A Premier Land Use and Government Law Firm, Serving Both the Public and Private Sectors Throughout Illinois

Pioneering the representation of local governments and private developers in land use and government law.

Contact Us

Bridging the Gap between Public & Private Sectors

We distinguish ourselves by representing both governments and private developers concerning real estate interests. Most other law firms focus on only one side of that client base. This combination of public and private sector experience better prepares us to offer advice to all our clients, and affords us a unique, full picture perspective of the world of land use and real estate. No other government and land use firm in Illinois has this combination of experience in the public and private sectors. No other government and land use firm in Illinois has been ranked in Tier One in Zoning and Land Use by Chambers USA – America’s Leading Business Lawyers Guide, a highly respected lawyer rating service. And no other Illinois firm has five attorneys ranked by Chambers for zoning and land use in 2022.

Our Practice Areas

For the Public Sector

Dedicated representation for Illinois governments at all levels, including villages, cities, and special districts throughout the Chicago metropolitan area and the State.

We understand intricately all legal aspects of how local governments work; how they must respond under all the circumstances they face; why they must be especially aware of budgets, political and public communications concerns, and how and when they must be responsive to regulatory and other legal matters.

Elrod Friedman attorneys have advised Illinois municipal and local governments of all sizes and structures on all matters affecting their activities for nearly 40 years. We are able and committed to exceptional legal service to our clients.

Learn more about Public Sector

For the Private Sector

Dedicated representation for private sector developers, real estate owners, and other entities on zoning, land use entitlements, public financing and tax increment financing, economic development, public/private partnerships, and all aspects of the real estate development process.

We understand the law and the process of real estate development, inside and out; how the time pressures of real estate development must be adroitly managed in the context of an entitlement process; and how cooperation and understanding between the public and private sectors can result in approvals that pave the way for successful developments and community growth.

Elrod Friedman attorneys help the private sector with responsible development achievements and the public sector with accomplishing government policies, all within the proper legal frameworks.

Learn more about Private Sector

“Our firm thrives on our very specific and deep knowledge in the related areas of land use planning, local government and private sector development. Local government entities, as well as real estate developers, will greatly benefit from our new firm’s nimble, dedicated, and cost-effective counsel.”

Steven Elrod and Peter Friedman

Peter Friedman and Steven Elrod

The Difference

How The Elrod Friedman Team Works

Dedicated to the law. Dedicated to our clients.

At Elrod Friedman, we believe in civility and counsel guided by years of on-the-ground experience and engagement. We believe that our clients deserve high quality legal consultation to manage their opportunities and overcome their challenges. When you partner with us, you get:

  • The benefit of decades of nuanced, sophisticated experience
  • Relationships with public and private sector clients across the state
  • The ability to work with and across overlapping jurisdictions
  • A wide range of experience
  • True partners in your policy objectives and growth

We are problem solvers. We are responsive. We do not over-lawyer. We are efficient. We provide practical, thoughtful, useful, understandable counsel. We are clear and concise writers. We are good public speakers – forceful when necessary, but always polite and respectful.

Meet the Team

Our Recognized Work

Signature Land Use and Economic Development

  • Itasca Data Center Campus – easements, zoning, subdivision, and annexation approvals for a data center campus on behalf of NTT Global Data Centers
  • University of Illinois Steven S. Wymer Hall and Parking Facility –real estate transactional counsel for developer of $122 million public private partnership project
  • Planned Development Amendment Approval – obtained Chicago City Council approval of 297 (59 affordable) unit residential development in O’Hare Community Area, on behalf of Glenstar
  • Arlington International Racecourse Redevelopment – master planning and zoning entitlements for mixed-use development, including a new NFL football stadium, on behalf of Arlington Heights (ongoing)
  • Central DuPage Hospital – zoning approvals and public-private partnership agreement with the Village of Winfield for the redevelopment of the hospital site and downtown retail district, on behalf of Northwestern Medicine
  • American Place Casino development – negotiation of Development & Host Community Agreement and Ground Lease for a $500-million-dollar casino and entertainment complex, on behalf of Waukegan
  • Mellody Farm Shopping Center, Vernon Hills – zoning and TIF entitlements on behalf of Regency Centers and Focus Development
  • Edens Plaza Shopping Center, Wilmette – zoning approvals for appearance review and 150,000 square foot redevelopment of the former Carson Pirie Scott building, on behalf of WS Development
  • Oak Brook Commons mixed-use development – zoning and entitlements on behalf of Hines, including a Northwestern Medical Office Building and Alter Brewing Restaurant and Brewery (ongoing
  • Skokie Mixed-Use Residential Development – zoning approvals for a 494-unit residential building and first floor commercial, on behalf of developer Touhy Linder LLC
  • Establishment of Chicago’s Red Line Transit TIF District
  • Establishment of Chicago’s density bonus and neighborhood opportunity ordinance and regulations
  • Redevelopment of the former Purple Hotel site for the District 1860 Development, on behalf of Lincolnwood (ongoing)
  • Redevelopment and sale of Libertyville Sports Complex and Golf Learning Center (ongoing)
  • The Everton Development – zoning approvals on behalf of Warrenville
  • Multi-jurisdictional Intergovernmental Agreements for a multi-million-dollar stormwater infrastructure project on behalf of Winnetka
  • Graceland-Webford Mixed Use Redevelopment – zoning, construction, subdivision, property conveyance, and development approvals on behalf of Des Plaines
  • Writers Theatre – zoning, construction, and development approvals on behalf of Glencoe
  • La Grange Theater – entitlements and loan grants for historic movie theater on behalf of LaGrange
  • Elion Logistics Park, Wilmington – zoning and TIF approvals on behalf of Elion Partners (ongoing)
  • Largest Illinois floodplain buyout project and related acquisition of more than 50 flood-impacted homes on behalf of Des Plaines
  • Complex development and finance approvals for mixed-use, multi-facility public-private partnership for University of Illinois project, on behalf of Vermilion Development

Signature Litigation

  • Highland Park Assault Weapon Ban – Second Amendment challenge
  • Deerfield Assault Weapon Ban – Home Rule authority challenge
  • Lakeside Tower Apartment Building – Injunctive relief in an emergency hearing regarding unsafe conditions in a 14 story, 150 unit HUD subsidized building on behalf of Waukegan
  • Tinley Park housing discrimination – multi-million-dollar settlement on behalf of Buckeye Community Hope Foundation
  • Illume Condominium Development, Chicago West Loop – zoning entitlement challenge
  • Lake Bluff Sanctuary Subdivision – annexation challenge resulting in landmark Illinois Supreme Court decision on behalf of Lake Bluff
  • Stormwater Utility and Fee regulations – constitutional, statutory, and class action defense separately on behalf of both Winnetka and Peoria (ongoing)
  • Northbrook religious institution zoning – RLUIPA and First Amendment challenge
  • Kenilworth FOIA challenge concerning a high-profile murder case
  • Evanston “form of government” – election referendum challenge
  • Compass Global Logistics Hub (Joliet) – defense against state law contract challenge to local government multi-party planning and development agreements on behalf of developer, Northpoint Development (ongoing)

Recent News & Insights


See All News & Insights

We Are Dedicated To Our Clients

Our greatest sense of accomplishment comes when our legal counsel and strategy (whether behind-the-scenes or not) help lead the way to the successful implementation of a desired government program or action, or real estate transaction or development. We are uniquely qualified for these accomplishments. Public or private sector, we’re ready to be your partner.

Get the Representation You Deserve

Public or private sector, we can give you the legal support you need.

Let’s Talk