Editorials

EDITORIAL: Time to revive WhistleSTOP

We are all well aware of the gun and crime problem in Chicago. And we are also aware that it has spread to many unexpected places like last week to Michigan Avenue and Millennium Park. And we have all noticed the upswing in incidents in the neighborhood. Most recently an attempted robbery of a University(…)

EDITORIAL: Who is Sophia King?

“Who is she?” From the moment Sophia King was selected by Mayor Rahm Emanuel as the Interim Alderman of the 4th Ward, due to former Ald. Burns’ abrupt exit in February for a position at Airbnb, the most prominent question from Hyde Park residents has been “Who is she?” We’ve received phone calls, emails and(…)

The Hyde Park Herald endorses Christian Mitchell

The Hyde Park Herald endorses incumbent Christian Mitchell for State Rep. in the 26th District Democratic primary. After taking stock of the candidates running in this year’s election we’ve noticed that many of our local elected officials such as State Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie (D-25) and State Sen. Kwame Raoul are going unchallenged in the(…)

What about Reese?

Like everyone else we talk to, we are in favor of bringing the Barack Obama Presidential Library to the South Side of Chicago. We think it will be a powerful symbol. It probably will also be a modest but positive economic contributor, and it can be thoughtfully accomplished without displacing residents. We do wonder, though,(…)

Some advice for Will Burns

We anticipate a solid victory for Ald. Will Burns (4th). Although perennial challenger Norman Bolden seems to have finally made significant inroads into Hyde Park — as evidenced by a letter signed by numerous Hyde Park residents that appeared in last week’s Herald — he is still challenged organizationally and financially. That combination is lethal(…)

Hairston deserves four more years

Even with a wide variety of alternatives to choose from, we are endorsing Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) for another four-year term. Hairston continues to manage a ward that extends across multiple neighborhoods with passion and commitment. While there are always Hyde Parkers to be found who say she spends too much time in South Shore(…)

Sunshine is still the best disinfectant

The best of Hyde Park’s impulses have been on display in recent weeks in response to allegations of harassment of young people by the University of Chicago Police Department. A community meeting was held to air grievances. A task force is in formation under the auspices of the Fifth Ward office. Hyde Parkers are being(…)

Considering the Jackson Park fishkill

There is much to like about the plans for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) Jackson Park facelift, named Project 506. We have carefully reported the details of this proposal and provided links to the plan published by the USACE on our website. All of this coverage has been done with the tacit support(…)

Editorial: MAC’s major misstep

As we were going to press, just one of three adjacent townhomes owned by MAC Properties/Antheus Capital at 5110-5114 S. Harper Ave. remained standing. The other two were destroyed by a demolition crew, and we think it quite likely that the third will be gone by the time you are reading this. These greystones, built(…)

Editorial: Support Murray’s stand on testing

Murray Language Academy’s local school council is officially putting Chicago Public Schools on notice that it is tired of students and teachers being put through the ringer for the sake of a battery of standardized tests of questionable value. Their opposition comes in the form of a resolution, so it is hardly earth shattering, but(…)

Being part of the solution

We are disappointed but not altogether surprised at the decision by Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) to suspend her experiment in participatory budgeting. While she cites expense, we cannot help but wonder whether the handful of voters who bothered to take advantage of her offer to help select budget priorities for the ward was anything approaching what(…)

Harper greystones deserve preservation

Antheus Capital’s decision demolish three historic greystones on the 5100 block of Harper Avenue to pave the site for parking has, in our view, no redeeming justification. We fear the announcement marks a turning point in the way the New Jersey-based company is thinking about its responsibilities in the neighborhood. When Antheus founder Eli Unger(…)

Editorial: 53rd Street must also incubate local business

When Hyde Park was preparing for the dramatic remaking of the neighborhood that came to be known as Urban Renewal in the 1950s, offices for the City of Chicago were established on the second floor of the Harper Building on the northwest corner of 53rd Street and Harper Avenue. There, the ambitions of civic leaders(…)

Editorial: Lawsuit reflects need for input

Plenty of Hyde Parkers may be unhappy about the proposed high-rise across from Nichols Park on 53rd Street, but just a handful of residents have decided to do something about it. As a result, a lawsuit was recently filed against the city of Chicago, claiming the zoning changes required to build the project are illegal.(…)

Plan the future of 53rd Street

With the demolition of the Mobil gas station across from Nichols Park slated to begin next week, the 13-story development planned for that site — Vue53 to the developers, McMobil to everyone else — seems all but certain. Many Hyde Parkers have complained about the scale of this project, but without the support of Ald.(…)

Ray needs leeway

For months, Antonia “Toni” Hill has been leading Ray Elementary School as its interim principal, following the removal of Tatia Beckwith. Owing to what has to be a technicality, Ray has been unable to conduct a formal search for a principal because the position is not officially vacant. Meanwhile, Hill has proven herself a capable(…)

Editorial: More shenanigans at CPS

This has been a school year of endless anxiety for thousands of students, parents and teachers in the Chicago Public Schools. A list of more than 100 school closures led to 50 schools ultimately being shuttered. You would think everyone deserved a breather after endless public meetings and a herculean effort on the part of(…)

Canter vote a good start

Canter vote a good start

The Chicago Board of Education voted last week to phase out Canter Middle School, 4959 S. Blackstone Ave., instead of abruptly closing the school’s doors at the end of this year. This means a shock wave that would have affected half of Hyde Park’s elementary schools and many, many families has been averted. We congratulate(…)

Editorial: Dollars should follow values

The Fair Trader quietly closed its doors a couple of weekends ago, and for the most compelling of reasons — not enough customers. Amidst the clamor in the neighborhood around the proposed McMobil high-rise and the ongoing conversation about Harper Court and its value to the retail scene in Hyde Park, the loss of this(…)

Editorial: and a little travel advice

As of this weekend, the Red Line reconstruction project begins, which means Red Line service ends for at least five months. Residents from across the South Side who use the Red Line to get around will be shuttled to the Garfield Green Line stop. In the oft-understated parlance of the CTA: Expect delays. We have(…)