HYDE PARK HERALD  EDITORIAL

What will taxpayers pay for new roadways?

Last week we wrote an editorial explaining that the Obama Presidential Center and the Jackson Park and South Shore Park golf course redesign are separate projects and should be viewed that way by the community . We suggested that the golf course project should be judged on its own merits and not tied to the OPC. Both the Obama Foundation and Chicago Park District have confirmed our statement. A statement from the Obama Foundation: The golf project is separate from the Obama Presidential Center. The Chicago Park Golf Alliance is overseeing the golf course project that has been discussed in addition to the OPC at the recent public meetings convened by the Chicago Park District and [5th Ward] Alderman [Leslie] Hairston. A statement from the Chicago Park District: The Obama Presidential Library Center is not a Chicago Park District project. It will be located in Jackson Park, on what was Chicago Park District land. (it is not City of Chicago land that will be transferred). You may be able to learn more here: https://www.obama.org/the-center/. The Chicago Park District is working on combining the South Shore and Jackson park golf courses. While the projects will[ be in the same park], they are separate and apart. There is a meeting being hosted Wednesday, Aug. 23, and Thursday, Aug. 24, by the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) at the South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. Shore Drive, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. During the meeting, roadway closures for both the presidential center and golf course renovations including Midway Plaisance (eastbound) between Stony Island Avenue, and Cornell Drive, Cornell Drive from 59th Street to Hayes Drive, Marquette Drive from Stony Island Avenue to Richards Drive, and northbound from Cornell Avenue from 67th to 65th streets, will be discussed. We are hoping that its representatives will be prepared to actively listen to community concerns, answer community questions that directly affect those living in the neighborhoods surrounding the Jackson Park and South Shore Park and be clear about which plans are directly related to the presidential center and which ones are directly related to the golf course redesign. We’d also like a clear answer to how much roadway construction will cost and how much of that cost taxpayers will have to pay for each project One need only to see the Herald’s letters to the editor for the past few weeks to gather that there is much controversy. The community needs clarification and facts. It will be interesting to see how much of that is presented at tonight’s meeting.