Library, apartments open on Taylor St.
March 1, 2019

Developers and City officials cut the ribbon to open the Little Italy Branch Library officially on Taylor Street.

The Chicago Housing Authority (CHA), the Chicago Public Library (CPL), Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Alderman Jason C. Ervin, Related Midwest, and other community leaders on Jan. 24 opened the Taylor Street Apartments and Little Italy Branch Library.

Located on Taylor Street near Ada Street, the structure holds the library branch and 73 apartments, including 37 CHA units, 29 affordable units, and seven market rate units.

“Chicago is breaking the mold and uniting the strengths of our neighborhood libraries with great housing that is affordable and accessible,” Emanuel said. “Bringing together world-class libraries and housing builds strong neighborhoods and provides a place for all community residents to gather, share, and succeed.”

“Libraries have always served as the foundation of healthy, thriving communities where residents can gather and engage in accessible, enriching activities,” said Curt Bailey, president of Related Midwest. “We are extremely proud to bring the Little Italy Branch Library and Taylor Street Apartments to the Near West Side.”

The library offers an early learning play space, designed to develop children’s early literacy skills through play; the YOUmedia space for teens to explore digital and 2D and 3D design, music, recording, and technology; and workforce development support and technology tutors called CyberNavigators for adults who want to learn computer skills or apply for a job online. The library also will provide training sessions on resume writing, interview prep, and industry-specific skills.

“We know how essential our libraries are to the communities of Chicago as neighborhood anchors,” said CPL Commissioner Brian Bannon.

“The Taylor Street Apartments and Little Italy Branch Library will together provide a vital community anchor where children and families go to read, learn, discover, and explore,” Ervin said.

“We are looking forward to the opening of the apartments soon and know that our investment in these innovative developments will serve neighborhood residents well for years to come,” said CHA CEO Eugene E. Jones, Jr.

Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP designed the structure, which Related Midwest developed in partnership with W.E. O’Neil and the Bowa Construction Group.

To contact the Little Italy Library, call (312) 746-5656. For more information on the apartments, contact Related Midwest at (312) 832-4114.