Obama Foundation files plans for presidential library in Chicago
Obama Foundation files plans for presidential library in Chicago
Daniel Borman Flickr The Obama Presidential Center design as seen from the south side of the campus
14 January, 2018, 00:50
The planned presidential center of Barack Obama has undertaken some major revisions to better harmonize with surroundings in southern Chicago, local media reported on Wednesday.
Mr. Lipson is one of more than 100 faculty at the University of Chicago who signed a public letter asking Mr. Obama to move his library. What happens to Olmsted's vision for Jackson Park will now be determined by a federal review, the city of Chicago and the Obamas.
Charles Lipson, a political scientist at the University of Chicago, which sits just blocks away from the center's future location, said Mr. Obama is "indulging himself" by building "a monument along the lakefront, where it will have a lot less positive impact than it could have had elsewhere".
"First, there are concerns that the Obama Center as now planned will not provide the promised development or economic benefits to the neighborhood", the letter explains. However, it questions the decision to locate the center in Jackson Park.
The letter closes with a blistering criticism of the project's estimated cost, which the professors argue will easily exceed $100 million and fall exclusively on the shoulders of the taxpayer.
The letter hammered the Obama Foundation's plans to build a 450-space parking lot, saying that it is "socially regressive" because it privileges people who can afford to have a auto. "The economic impact to the people who live there now would be unbelievable". The garage was initially slated to take up five acres on the historic Midway Plaisance, another part of the Chicago park system. "We've reimagined the landscape plans and the recreational spaces". Obama Presidential Center is "socially regressive". The presidential library will be housed on the city's South Side in the Jackson Park neighborhood. The foundation has adapted plans after hearing from the community and has committed to projects and programs to improve lives on the Southside.
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