City grapples with surge in migrants
Mayor Lori Lightfoot is urging Texas governor Greg Abbott to stop busing asylum seekers to Chicago because the City is not receiving federal aid from FEMA or the CARES Act to provide the adequate resources, and criticized his “lack of consideration or coordination in an attempt to cause chaos and score political points.” In a public letter, she said, “the national immigration problem will not be solved by passing on the responsibility to other cities.” Since Monday, several police stations have been allowing new arrivals to sleep on the floor before they are placed in a shelter, which has become a logistical headache. Mutual aid groups and non-profit organizations are collecting food and toiletry donations and delivering them to the stations, while they attempt to relocate families to temporary homes. A Family and Support Services Commissioner said “we’re receiving over 100 people a day”. Abbot responded to Lightfoot’s letter, saying she should take up the issue with President Joe Biden.
Promontory Point landmark
Hyde Park’s Promontory Point is now protected under landmark designation after a unanimous City Council vote on April 19. Residents and activists fought for more than twenty years to preserve the last remaining limestone revetments on the city’s shoreline. Backed by 5th Ward Alderperson Leslie Hairston, Promontory Point Conservancy stood their ground; residents at one point sent hundreds of letters to the commission on Chicago Landmarks demanding its protection and rehabilitation. Promontory Point sits between 54th and 56th Streets and was completed in 1939. The landmark status protects its exterior elevations, pavilion rooflines, pathways, council rings, fountain, and of course, the limestone steps. In January, the city gave $5 million towards preserving the historic nature of Promontory Point. It is now expected for city officials to begin renovation on the limestone barriers, marking a victory for the South Side.
The $400 million wasted on unfriendly sheer drops and massive concrete structures while the limestone blocks were pushed into the lake should be stopped by removing the perpetrators from power on the boards of the city plan commission, park district board and the Army Corps of Engineers (where are the engineers?). A very attractive solution is to replace the lost wood lagging with Lannon stone and reset the blocks with
maybe a sidewalk in front of the first step that satisfies ADA rules. The cost is less than $10M if sanity can prevail.
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