Yet this Black neighborhood stands firm.
On January 11, Tom McMahon stood up to call to order a public meeting at the Pullman National Monument Visitor Center, introducing himself by simultaneously disavowing and affirming the importance of his own place in Pullman’s community: “I’m the president of the Pullman Civic Organization. I’m also a board member of Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives. Tonight, I’m just the moderator, here to ask questions and address concerns raised during the last meeting.”
Before it was demolished as part of a sweeping redevelopment plan, there were 1,426 households in the public housing project consisting of the Ida B. Wells Homes, Madden Park Homes and Clarence Darrow Homes. People displaced by the demolition, which began in 2002, were told they could return; at one point, more than 1,000 replacement units were planned for the site.
It’s one of the city’s busiest library branches with over 21,000 visitors each month, and for years residents have complained of overcrowding and outdated technology.
“Because right now it seems like ‘Oh, there’s just so much land, we have to get this into the private market or figure out what to do with it.’ But soon there will be none left, and whatever is left will be super expensive.”
The business-to-business loan market has been likened to that of payday loans; with misleading rates, APRs nearing 100 percent, and hidden fees, these unregulated lenders pose a serious threat to small business owners in Chicago and across the country.
Englewood’s residents would be able to breathe deeply, but not on 57th and Normal.
By this spring, a factory roof in Pullman will be home to a farm that grows up to a million pounds of pesticide-free produce a year. As 9th Ward Alderman Anthony A. Beale says, “That amount of lettuce is unreal!” When it opens up on top of eco-friendly cleaning product company Method’s new manufacturing plant, Gotham Greens’ rooftop farm will be the largest of its kind in the world. Not only will it grow produce year-round, but, along with Method’s plant, the farm will also bring close to 150 new jobs to the community. The plans are an exciting development for an area that has historically had a higher unemployment rate than the city as a whole, but they also highlight a divide between Pullman proper and the surrounding area. Continue reading
Rasaan Liddell, executive director of the newly founded Afro-Sino Chamber of Commerce, jokes that if someone were to run their fingers over the Chamber’s articles, their hand would come away smudged with ink. The Chamber’s headquarters on South Wabash Street were only completed last December, and consist of a multipurpose room and a medium-sized table where Liddell’s young son sometimes does his homework after school. Continue reading