What is an SSA?

The Special Service Area (SSA) is an economic development tool, created by state statute and city ordinance, which allows extra real estate property taxes to be collected to fund added services for a defined area. It is the only taxing body in which property owners choose to be assessed and have direct decision-making authority on the use of those funds.


SSA taxpayers cooperatively plan, provide, benefit from, and pay for services within their own area.   SSA-funded services focus on the public way and are in addition to services generally provided by the City. 

SSAs exist throughout the USA, as well as in other parts of the world, and are more commonly known as Business Improvement Districts (BIDs). There have been more than 50 SSAs within the City of Chicago and 800 nationwide.

About West Town SSA

West Town SSA was established in November 2004 by City Council ordinance and was set to expire in December 2014. It was successfully renewed for an additional 15 years and will expire at the end of 2029.  

The mission of West Town SSA is to maintain and improve the shopping, dining and nightlife within the SSA boundary by providing a cleaner, safer and more attractive commercial environment for consumers, residents and business owners.

West Town SSA Boundaries

The boundaries of the West Town SSA 29-2014 which will exist from 2015-2029 are:

Chicago Ave from Halsted Street to Western Ave,

Damen Ave from Chicago Ave to Huron St,

Ashland Ave from Chicago Ave to Division St,

Ogden Ave from Fry St to the Kennedy Expressway,

Milwaukee Ave from Erie St to Augusta Ave on both sides of the street, and Milwaukee Ave from Augusta Ave to Division St on the East side of the street,

Division St from Milwaukee Ave to the Kennedy Expressway on the South side of the street.

SSA Governing & Management

West Town SSA is governed by a 9-member Commission whose members are SSA property and business owners. SSA Commissioners are appointed by the Mayor and serve 2-year terms. The West Town Chicago Chamber of Commerce is the Service Provider agency which, under contract with the City of Chicago, is responsible for providing and managing the SSA services approved by the Commission. The West Town Chicago Chamber of Commerce reports to the Chicago Department of Planning and Development which oversees all of the the SSAs in the City.

2020 Commissioners

Photo by Motorkast

Michael VanDam - Resident / Property Owner

Chris Hunt - Seek Vintage

Sara Dulkin - Chicago Truborn

Steven Tobiason - Epic Spices

Adam Williams - Reach Fieldhouse

Jenny Rossignuolo - Urban Source

Candice Cusic - Candice Cusic Photography

Nora McCarthy - Gallery 2052

1819 W. Chicago Ave.

Chicago, IL 60622



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