Benjamin Van Horne of Greenline Homes

Our Story

Benjamin Van Horne, Founder

Greenline’s Benjamin Van Horne grew up in Washington, D.C. After earning his BA in international relations from George Washington University, he spent a couple years in St. Louis where he was impressed by the work of for-profit affordable housing developers in North St. Louis. He came to Chicago in 1998 with the goal of working in affordable housing development.

In 1999, Van Horne formed Greenline Development, Inc. and acquired a vacant 24-unit apartment building at 6647 S. Maryland for back taxes. The building was in demolition court and had significant fire and water damage, but it remained a well-built 3-story apartment building erected in the 1890s a half block from Oakwood Cemetery. Despite this and other challenges, Greenline Homes was able to get the project gut rehabbed, and the result was 20 affordable 2-bedroom condos that became a calling card for Greenline’s work.

Greenline Homes then focused on building new construction 3-, 4-, 6-, and 8-unit, new construction affordable condo buildings. These homes won recognition for their combination of quality and affordability from Chicago Magazine and other media plus a Bruce Abrams Award from the Chicago Association of Realtors. Greenline Homes has gone on to produce more than 70 single-family homes, townhomes, and condos across the city. Since 2009 Greenline has focused on building LEED certified single-family homes.

Benjamin Van Horne is a Certified Green Professional under the National Association of Homebuilders National Green Building Standard and a LEED Green Associate. He is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council-Illinois Chapter, The Southside Builders Association, the Citizens Climate Lobby, and the Sierra Club.

Vision & Values

Greenline Homes is committed to the following socially responsible development principles:

  • Development without displacement

  • Opportunities for moderate-income, first-time homebuyers

  • Mixed-income communities

  • Energy efficiency and environmental stewardship

  • High-quality design and construction

We demonstrate our commitment to these values by prioritizing affordability when we select our materials and technology, by constructing well-built homes, and by working closely with partners in the communities where we build.

Our Green Homes

Every Greenline home reflects craftsmanship and quality, sustainability, and an eye to affordability.

Our process has allowed us to become one of only a few builders in Chicagoland producing homes of such high quality at such an affordable price.