July 2015

Two years after fire, St. Basil prepares to reopen sanctuary

A fire caused by a candle so severely damaged St. Basil Greek Orthodox Church two years ago that services have had to be held in the basement since then. Services soon will move back upstairs to a fully restored worship space.

11th Ward plagued by sudden upsurge in violence recently

Police are continuing to investigate at least three recent violent attacks in the 11th Ward, including one described by a victim as “racially motivated.” Yet Alderman Patrick D. Thompson said detectives told him that, based on what they have learned so far, no evidence supports charging any of those they have already arrested with a hate crime.

Raise Your Hand organization offers plans for CPS solvency

Chicago Public Schools (CPS) is facing a budget deficit of $1.1 billion, and its leaders have admitted it is in a state of “crisis.” Some officials want to disband or significantly change the entire school system.

With election over, aldermen set their priorities, get to work

With the City of Chicago municipal elections over, local aldermen have set their priorities and are getting down to business. The Gazette spoke to several of them about their upcoming plans.

Thompson moves fast to fix potholes under viaducts

The crater-like potholes under the 33rd Street viaduct near U.S. Cellular Field now are history.

Reefer muddle: Marijuana dispensary now in doubt

A controversial medical marijuana dispensary planned for Fulton Market may not happen after all.

Differing views on Maggie Daley Park restaurant

A new restaurant slated for development in Maggie Daley Park is drawing opposing reactions from two groups that support Chicago parks.

Hero Ed Kulbida named 12th Police District commander

No can say Edward Kulbida has not paid his dues. The 30-year Chicago Police Department veteran and recent recipient of the Top Cop Award became the new commander of the Near West [12th] Police District on April 27. The National Association of Police Organizations presented the Top Cop Award to Kulbida after he was wounded in the line of duty last October.

Mocco fights graffiti in West Loop

Taggers are leaving their mark on the West Loop. “The graffiti we find in the West Loop are not gang related; they are all by ‘taggers,’” said local resident Patti Mocco, a member of Neighbors of West Loop who also is the Chicago Police facilitator for Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy Beat 1224.

Harrington to close; students to attend Columbia College

Harrington College of Design, which offers programs in interior design, digital photography, and communication design in the West Loop, announced it will close by August 2018.

Abreu’s Amigos; Farmers Markets; ward11.org

AARP Experience Corps is looking for volunteers age 50 and over who are willing to tutor students. The program serves children in kindergarten through third grade in the Chicago Public Schools. Many students progress a year or more in their reading level with the help of AARP Experience Corps tutors.

When politics fail, it’s time for elected officials to examine outside plans

The politicians have done a poor job in attempting to solve the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) financial woes for decades, but this year the situation has reached crisis proportions.