November 2013

McCormick Entertainment District plan puts some local businesses in jeopardy

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority (MPEA) officials unveiled the McCormick Place Entertainment District last May…

Former Ickes residents want to come back to the community

More than a dozen former residents of the Harold Ickes Homes and members of the Chicago Housing Initiative (CHI) community organization recently gathered at a vacant lot at State Street and Cermak Road to voice their frustrations with the Chicago Housing Authority’s (CHA) slow response to providing replacement housing for the more than 1,000 units that disappeared when workers demolished the last of the buildings in 2010.

Bridgeport Citizens Group uses art, gardening to improve safety

The Bridgeport Citizens Group (BCG) has fought crime by attending C.A.P.S. meetings, promoting “positive loitering” to keep a watch on the community, and hosting “smoke outs” or community barbeques.

City to build new Chinatown library

One of the busiest libraries in the city will be moving to a new home in 2015, as the Chicago Public Library (CPL) recently unveiled plans for a new Chinatown library. The current branch is located at 2353 S. Wentworth Ave., a rented space on the first floor of a two-story retail center. The library averages 21,000 visitors a month.

New curbs, sidewalks built on 16th, 18th, and 19th Streets

Alderman Daniel Solis (25th Ward) has announced the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) agreed to construct new sidewalks, curbs, and gutters on 18th Street between Western Avenue and Leavitt Street, on 19th Street from Western to the alley to the east, and on 16th Street from Wolcott Avenue to Wood Street. In addition, CDOT agreed to replace sidewalks, curbs, and ramps on Leavitt north of 18th and resurface Leavitt.

Community groups polarize over proposed Ashland BRT

Community groups continue to oppose or advocate for Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) on Ashland Avenue as the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) prepares traffic count data and analysis and environmental impact reports.

St. Matthew’s Church needs to repair roof

St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church, 2108 W. 21st St., has “an urgent need” to fix its roof before winter arrives, said Pastor Julio Loza. “We will appreciate any support for this need.”

Proposed Taylor Street liquor store meets opposition

Near West Side residents opposing plans for a new liquor store at 1455 W. Taylor St. have caused Ald. Jason Ervin (28th) to pause the process and call two community meetings to discuss the issue.

New community group (NOWL) forms in West Loop

Residents recently met to launch the Neighbors of West Loop (NOWL) community group. NOWL seeks to enhance the quality of life for residents and neighbors of the greater West Loop community. Members want to engage those who wish to collaborate to improve the neighborhood and promote sound development and businesses in the area.

New Ping Tom Park field house is dedicated

Hundreds of Chinatown, South Loop, and Near South residents joined Mayor Rahm Emanuel and 25th Ward Alderman Daniel Solis at last month’s ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Ping Tom Memorial Park field house at 1700 S. Wentworth Ave. The 30,000 square foot facility, designed by Wight and Company, provides a multi-purpose gym, a state-of-the- art fitness room, two meeting rooms, an indoor pool, and a 3,200 square foot rooftop terrace.

Circle Interchange construction now underway

The four-year, $475 million Circle Interchange overhaul at the junction of the Dan Ryan and Kennedy (I-90/94), and Eisenhower (I-290) expressways began Sept. 9 with closing the Morgan Street bridge, followed by soil testing around the Peoria Street bridge, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT).

Chili Cook-Off; Casino Night; Round-ups

The Alliance for a Greener South Loop is hosting the Greener Together Contest to fund a green community project in the South Loop. Anyone who lives, works, goes to school, or plays…