Whether you’re new to the ward, or just new to ward politics, we’re happy you’re here.
Chicago is divided into 50 legislative districts, called wards. Each ward elects an alderperson every four years to represent the interests of the community. These 50 alderpeople make up the Chicago City Council, the legislative branch of the City of Chicago government. The next city-wide Council election is set for 2023.
The 48th Ward includes parts of the Edgewater, Andersonville, and Uptown community areas. Not sure if you’re in the 48th? Confirm your ward and alderman here.
Harry Osterman has been the alderman of the 48th Ward since May 2011.
An alderman is a ward’s elected leader and representative to City Council. They are active both within their wards and the greater city.
In the wards, aldermen work with the community and institutions like schools and businesses to improve life for residents. They have an annual budget for infrastructure improvements. They also handle issues like problems with city services or safety concerns. Aldermen have final approval for zoning changes and development in their wards. Known as “aldermanic privilege,” this ability to independently push something through or veto gives them significant power.
On the city council, aldermen represent their wards’ interests. They also propose and vote on city-wide legislation and approve the mayor’s proposed budget and appointments. They serve on committees to address issues like housing, public safety, education, environmental protection, and more.
Harry Osterman serves as the chair of the Committee on Housing and Real Estate and the vice-chair of the Committee on Public Safety. This gives him a significant influence on several issues that affect the entire city, not just the 48th Ward. These include police accountability and affordable housing.
48th Ward Office
5533 N. Broadway
Chicago, IL 60640
Lessons Learned from Deadly Chicago 1995 Heat Wave (from Scientific American; PBS produced a documentary on the 1995 heat wave called Cooked: Survival by Zip Code)
2021 Chicago Budget Community Engagement Survey Recap (from City of Chicago)
American Revolution 2 (1969 documentary by Howard Alk on the 1968 Democratic Convention and the Young Patriots Movement in Uptown)