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Added Apr 09 2012

The recently published Urban Institute report on the impact of CHA relocatees on crime rates has stoked tension in communities between CHA and non-CHA residents.

The report is very nuanced. The topline summary provided by the media has served to only confirm the worst fears of middle class residents of communities with CHA relocatees.

While media attention has been focused on the impact of CHA relocatees on crime rates, some points must be made. First, crime rates dropped across Chicago in the 2000s. Second, the amount of the reduction in crime in communities with CHA relocatees is related to the concentration of CHA relocatees. Communities with low numbers of relocatees experienced a larger reduction in crime rates than communities with high numbers of CHA relocatees.

More importantly, the report demonstrates that communities that converted traditional public housing to mixed income transformation sites experienced significant reductions in crime rates. For many years the Fourth Ward has had traditional public housing projects such as Washington Park, Ida B. Wells, Madden, Darrow, and Lake Michigan Homes. The CHA transformation plan has converted traditional public housing into mixed income developments.

Mixed income housing disaggregates toxic concentrations of poverty, increases the median income of neighborhoods, grows population density, and spurs retail development.

Current and future mixed income housing developments in the Fourth Ward require drug testing for all residents, regardless of income, and prospective tenants submit to a rigorous selection process.

Finally, I have made it clear to CHA in public and private meetings that lease provisions must be enforced and that CHA residents who fail to comply with their leases must be evicted.

  • We are under sieged with these people in our communities!!! South Shore, Chatham, Bronzeville and West Hyde Park. CHA drops these people in our communities and they don't moniter their behavior!! The ignorance, dysfunction, uneducated and criminal element must go! Our little piece of paradise was invaded by a drug dealer who was living with a CHA resident and he and she turned this community upside down with a parade of junkies, hookers and all kinds of horrible people. They must go!!!

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Bronzeville Conservator

    Class stratification among African American in Chicago, can be worse that white racism!

    Check out the term 'spacial deconcentration" and HUD, HOPE VI, Section 3 regulations, if you seek to understand the systematic exploitation, victimization and disenfranchisement of lower income public housing residents, over the past 40 years in Chicago.

    Bronzeville Curmudgeon

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    Alderman Burns,

    I hope that the CHA will rigorously enforce the rules and regulations to keep the developments and surrounding neighborhoods intact and peaceful.

    So many of us have had unsatifactory experiences with developments when the fanfare following building dedications ended to be replaced by the unfortunate but steady erosion of the maintainance and monitoring aspects.

    When the developments open, can you mandate that the CHA have a reporting liason to your office on a monthly basis to resolve community and or resident concerns? I see this as a way to insure CHA keeps their end of the bargain. After all, CHA has no right to believe they have earned any trust from market rate Bronzeville residents.

  • Rather than justifying the proliferation of our community with these so called mixed income properties, how about becoming a voice of fairness and reason in insisting on true diversiification and spread this mixed income concept throughout the city, maybe that is too much to expect that the entire city bear this burden.

  • Just to the north of Bronzeville, it was announced that Motor Row was awarded an Entertainment District zoning, to me that means jobs and entertainment dollars, it seems that we are missing out on a lot of the things that go hand in hand with solid growth, like our vision is narrow and our goals are small. Too much of anything is never good(mixed income houising), diversify the approach to the building up our community is all that we ask.Good retail, paved streets, clean lots, responsible buisness owners...etc.,etc.,

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    I have an example of a hard working CHA resident, passed the vigorous screenings and is an excellent example of the system working for those who deserve it. The problem is she has teenage trouble making kids, who she says "visit" but the truth is they live there on and off and bring their friends, who bring their girls, who bring their children all while this woman is working 3 jobs and has no clue what goes on in her home.

    WHO DO WE CALL? the problem is we dont know who is ON the lease, who and how many actually LIVE in the homes.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    GCF, you have just shared why EVERYONE is afraid of any CHA participation in their area.

    I lived in a far southside neighborhood for years and that was the pattern that forced me to move. The visitors and kids had no incentive to be respectful as they had nothing on the line. The lease was in an older persons name, who never seemed to be around when the trouble was kicking off.

    The persons managing the property were only visable when it was time to show the place to the next family. Make no mistake, unless the CHA guarantees 24/7 onsite management; expect each of these developments to become run of the mill nuisances in no time.

    I wish one of the families had broken this pattern as I might have stayed. I realized that those I saw as troublemakers, they knew as friends and protectors. How could they tell those people to keep it down or stop certain behaviors because our new complex won't allow it? (translation or interpretation; I am now TOO GOOD FOR YOU; GO HOME) Doesn't seem likely to happen and it didn't!

  • Bronzeville is and should be developed as a destination, what with the historical past and proximity to Downtown, this is an easy sell, you can not and should not flood it with cheap pre fab housing and expect the resources that come with a richly developed community. Look no further to the south and west loop as examples of an aggressive plan with its diversified approach in its development.

  • As I think about your defense of mixed income CHA, I think to myself this is the same thing they touted about the High rise CHA projects when they were first built in the 40's and 50's, and we all know how that turned out. Buisnesses and Jobs bring stability and sustained growth and this should be our focus, we should throw out the warehousing of people idea, it never worked. If you give a Man a sandwich he eats today, if you teach him to fish, he eats everyday.

  • BURNS??? THE CHA residents who fail the screening process will then be the one's in the scattered site locations throughout the community in Douglas & Grand Boulevard. CHA & other low income residents at places like Lawless Gardens and smaller scattered buildings and also those who reside with private apartment owners who do not screen their voucher holders are what we are left to live around, which in my opinion is a real nuisance!!

    Please explain how what you are doing is a benefit to existing single family and townhome property owners!! Your message sounds more like you want to make sure that CHA residents are in mixed income developments so they can benefit from great neighbors and any property owners outside of this scenario can just run for cover from the perpetuators of blight.

    Do you ever walk through the area Burns??? CHA rejections that flock to scattered site housing is a serious problem!!!

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    Does anyone plan to be at the Fourth Ward Community Meeting?
    CHA is responding to this report there.

  • Burns, if you place a message online, you should also reply online as well!

  • Alderman Burns, I hope I can expect more than this from you when you become my alderman in the South Loop. Nobody is going to rent a 1 bedroom for $1100 in a dangerous setting. This plan has missed the market and is totally out of touch with reality.

    When you can't afford the market rates in a neighborhood, you move to where the rents are where you can afford them. There is no right to live in any neighborhood.

  • When and where is the fourth ward community meeting and also the time!

  • Mr. Burns,

    I would think if you were going to bother posting this "announcement", you could at least respond reasonably to some of the controversey that it has caused. We had the same experience with Mrs Dowell on another thread. It seemed that it took a considerable amount of time to engage her after her original post. There are some bright motivated members here that are requesting answers to tough questions, not overly simplified window dressing that is so often used to appease voters. food for thought.

  • I think you have a prime example to look to within your own ward, something that we would all embrace here on 35th, and that is 53rd, this is what we want. 53rd is being constructed and has projects on the planning board that if they were on 35th would be an ideal blueprint for this area, I for one would be estatic. Mr. Burns we elected you for our representation to lead us into the future with bold ideas and plans, this is our vision of Bronzeville, Human warehouses are what killed this area in the past and we don't want to repeat history.

  • Soulquarian Loving my lake view in Hyde Park

    If you ever have any complaints about a CHA voucher holder (renting an apartment or house via CHA voucher) call 312-935-2600. If the person occupies a CHA public housing building call 312-913-7266 or 312-724-8500 (senior public housing). If we don't make the complaints, nothing can be done. The complaints can be anonymous if you fear for your safety. Just make sure you have the correct address; if you know their name and floor/apartment number that's even better.

    @GCF, it's okay if you don't know how many people are on the lease. The CHA can view their account and find out. Having unauthorized people leaving in the home is a violation in addition to a lot of the other issues people have touched upon.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    Thank you SoulQuarian! This information is invaluable.

  • Soulquarian Loving my lake view in Hyde Park

    @ Wendell, you're welcome :)

    @ Concerned Mom, I agree with your statement about the private owners not screening the voucher holders. Some owners do not check with previous landlords or the CHA about the tenants' past behavior and view renting to a voucher holder as a guaranteed rent payment on the first of each month regardless of the havoc the tenant may cause. If you suspect a slumlord, you can report them as well.

  • Thank You Soulquarian!! Your information is very useful.

  • I plan to be in attendance on Monday. I had to juggle some other plans but this is too important to miss.

    Soulquarian, thank you for the phone numbers. I'm hoping to never need them.

  • Thanks for the phone numbers. I plan on sending an email to my block club with that information. Now when and where is the fourth ward meeting also the time...

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Bronzeville Conservator

    I have a schedule conflict and must travel to Springfield Illinois on Monday to participate in legislative lobby days next Monday and Tuesday April 16th & 17th. A delegation of urban preservationists and community civic engagement leaders are traveling to the State Capitol in support Chicago tourism initiatives including developing Bronzeville as an international heritage tourism destination.

    Ray, we are on the same page!

    Part of the south loop community is located in Bronzeville and includes the illustrious history of "Record Row' and the Blues Heaven Foundation. The faith based initiatives of Quinn Chappel, Bright Star church and Pastor Cory Brooks church community development project on the corner of 67th & Martin Luther King Drive must be collaboratively supported within the Black Metropolis National Heritage Area designation..

    That is why the defensible boundary discussion must be addressed in the comprehensive plan for the revitalization of the historic Bronzeville community, as a premier international heritage heritage tourism destination attraction.

    Here are the facts from a heritage tourism perspective:

    Chicago's visitor industry represents 124,000 jobs, $11.1 billion in direct spending and $616 million in tax revenue. Projected at a rate of 50 million visitors annually, the direct impact could increase to 155,000 - 165,000 jobs, $14.7 billion in direct spending and $1.2 - $1.3 billion per year in tax revenue. The result of this new, cohesive strategy by represents nearly $4 billion in additional annual revenue for the city of Chicago.

    That is why Black Metropolis Convention & Tourism Council a 501c3 not-for-profit Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) in good standing with the State of Illinois, created the Bronzeville Visitor Information Center and has effectively supported the collaborative development of Bronzeville, as a premier African American oriented heritage tourism destination for past decade.

  • Happy making better choices

    Ray you make a great point about 53rd but the difference is, that is led by the Univ and there is no way that UoC will allow the type of behavior or housing this discussion is about to thrive. The city won't either bc that is a major star for the city. Ppl will stop spending 50k plus/yr for their kids education and that can't happen.

    If the goal is to have mixed income areas why not do this city wide? I lived north and honestly would go back if I win the lottery :) Sometimes ppl need a change of scenery to have a change in attitude. There is NO WAY the behavior I have witnessed would have been tolerated where I lived. As soon as 2 or more ppl stop and you hear more than a whisper a cop on a bike, in car, or a segway is ushering you away with no issue taking you to jail if need be. In my area 12 ppl are yelling and playing music from a car and the police drive by like nothing is wrong and the residents shrug it off. When I call 911 the operators tone is like I am the crazy one and when I go ask them to be quite myself they look shocked. I learned that the culprits where all part of the program and since they have moved things are better.

    The vision of CHA resident is tainted bc there are good ppl who participate in the program but it has been over run with bad apples. Our areas have NO major business players that have a vested interest in seeing it flourish and can do something about it (there may be some trying but I just can't say who there). That would be great but until then we the locals will need to make the noise and do the actions necessary for change. How is the question but forums like this are a great start. I really enjoy this group even when we don't see eye to eye..thanks to you all

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    @ BC, we all are for that effort. The best of luck while in Springfield on business.

  • First let me give some of my background, I was born at 3629 s. King dr. in 1950 and my family moved to the Ida B. Wells extensions at east 36th place where we lived for 16 years, I graduated from Doolittle grammar school and went to Phillips high, I have recently moved back, so my roots run deep here, I am a Jazz lover and history is a hobby of mine. I know the history of the Great Migration, the Black belt, the Jazz venues that proliferated this area. Nowhere in this City is there more to be celebrated than what has happened in Bronzeville, we are situated in one of the most storied parts of this city. I am encouraged by the work of Bronzeville Curmudgeon and plan to meet you soon. We are the gatekeepers of our community and we set the tone, politicans only respond if the heat is on. Only the squeaky wheel gets the oil, the next change that occurs will effect our community for the next 50 to 100 years and we have to ask ourselves is this our vision of Bronzeville if the answer is no, we have a responsibility, change the way we want it is on us, let's not drop the ball.

  • BC how come we couldn't tie into that venture being proposed on motor row, I think 35th is an ideal location to be featured as an historical tourist destination and this is something that could be featured all up and down 35th, street poll banners, Wall murals, statues.....etc.,etc.,

  • Transplant New to the south and LOVING it!

    Until there the amount of mixed income housing levels north of Roosevelt equal our neighborhood, Burns should demand a moratorium on any CHA additions south of Roosevelt. Hope that isn't a nuanced statement ... But clear and to the point. If mixed housing is so jolly gee great, take it up north!

  • Read This!!

    I pasted this from another thread.

    " Two nights ago, two armed gunmen robbed my son as well. Our son was coming home late in the evening from DePaul University when he was robbed at gunpoint in the Gapco Community within Douglas, in the 3400 block on Giles. The robbers took his book bag which had his psychology notebook inside, along with a textbook and U-Pass. Our son is also a member of a dance club at DePaul and his jazz shoes were also in the book bag. He also had on gym shoes and they were taken from his feet. Then one of the gunman started searching his pockets for money. All this happened outside of our house before he could reach our front porch. Our daughter heard our son yell for help from her 2nd floor bedroom window and alerted us. We then rushed to open the front door and the gunmen fled north on Giles. The gunmen actually came from across the street; one of them was hiding alongside another row house across the street. They then rushed across with guns as he was entering through our iron gate. I can’t help but wonder if they were looking for textbooks to turn in for cash as well."

  • You are so lucky they didn't shoot him and ask questions later!!!
    We must be more alert when walking. What time of day was this?

  • @soulquarian Thank you for the numbers. The problem is, as I have experienced myself, when you contact CHA to complain it is very difficult for them to prove someone is "living" there. How do you prove someone is living there and not just visiting? And how do you prove which person the clothes in the closet belong to? How do you prove that you don't have just one teenage boy living there you have 5? And how do you prove that the home is a gang hang out? Once they are notified that they are going to be investigated everyone scatters and it gets very quiet for a few weeks or a month. All the annoying behavior stops and then like clockwork, it goes back to business as usual.

    This is why, in my experience, even after years and years of complaining we saw no change.

  • Majurej the article was on another website. However the post did say late evening, so it has to be after sundown.

  • If you can get these aldermen to put up some historical markers on Record Row and in Bronzeville you would get a lot of tourists. Someone should also look to the preservation of the Vee Jay /Brunswick building, which once had a studio built by Michael Jackson's later producer and sound engineer. The Dixons are not cooperating with anyone in a position to get Chess Studio going, whether it be Sun or Marshall Chess. That's not helping.

  • This developing Bronzeville as a historic tourist destination is a win on a lot of levels, Jobs, beautification of area, pride in neighborhood, tourist and entertainment dollars, festivals, art & craft fairs,etc.,etc

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Bronzeville Conservator

    Catherine537, Don't get bamboozled by what you read in the media about Blues Heaven Foundation. It is an authentic, sustainable African American cultural institution created and sustained by the Willie Dixon Family.

    It is blatant disrespect to blues lovers from all over the world, that Blues Heaven Foundation, has not been adequately funded as a significant heritage tourism attraction by the City of Chicago and the State of Illinois.

    Over the years, as an experienced Bronzeville tour guide, I have personally taken hundreds of visitors from all over the world to view and experience the history and tremendous artifacts represented in Blues Heaven Foundation.

    My heart goes out to the Willie Dixon family and his descendants for continuing to sustain and effectively manage Blues Heaven Foundation, in spite of the tragic loss of two key family members who formally ran the day to day operation.

    It has come under attack recently by insidious people who want to come in and take over Blues Heaven Foundation, as the South Loop area emerges as a potential entertainment district.

    Remember, the so-called "Motor Row District" also includes a least publicized "Record Row" history!

    It is dishonest and unscrupulous for the Chess Records family descendants to attempt a bogus takeover of Blues Heaven Foundation, in the light of how Chess Records historically exploited African American blues musicians.

    For the record of all time: Buddy Guy, Willie Dixon and Muddy Waters were three of the Great Black musicians who electrified the blues in Chicago!

    If you don't understand the history of the emergence of electrified blues in Chicago and Chess Records, just ask Buddy Guy!

    He is still around too set the record straight!

    Spoke graciously about the issue on Channel 11 last week!

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Bronzeville Conservator

    Ray, incorporating your 35th Street banner proposal concept into the draft plans for a Bronzeville/35th Street Illinois Main Street Project, would be a relatively easy next step for organizing 35th Street Merchants in helping express their collaborative economic self interests. has established some pretty good relationships with several businesses along the 35th street commercial business district. I think the businesses along 35th street from White Sox Park on the west end to the lakefront on the east end, would be very interested in getting involved in a sustainable marketing campaign that would generate new business opportunities from the emerging Bronzeville tourism industry.

    We generated 80 paying guests for buffet lunch at Pearl's Place just a couple of weeks ago, from a educational tour of Bronzeville.

    All the tour buses want to stop at the Bronzeville Visitor Information Center, then walk out to the enter section to experience the Gateway to Bronzeville, anchored by the restored, historic Supreme Liberty Life building, the Victory Monument and the Map of Bronzeville enplanted in the ground in the median strip on the boulevard at 35th & Martin Luther King Drive.

    Maybe we can get the students and administrators at Chi Arts Academy, to help local civic leadership design the street banners and other marketing materials, before they abandon Bronzeville for a new school campus at the old Malcolm X College site!

    Bronzeville Curmudgeon

  • BC I listened intensely to Ald. Fioretti as he described his idea of Bronzeville, I get the impression that he understands the enormity of developing an area with the history that is unique to Bronzeville, you can't just put in an homogenized devlopment that would not do honor to the history here. I also got the impression that when he traveled through the area with prospective developers they were aghast at the present condition of the area(Litter, loiterers,vacant buildings and lots and this is veiwed as an negative, because ingress and egress is impossible if you have to navigate through a sidewalk of people loitering. On King dr you have a walk of fame of famous and influential Chicagoians, my only fault with this is you have to be walking it to the know it was there, I stumbled on it by accident, I would like for every one of those stars to have a banner with a likeness of the individual honored there, much like the post in front of Ida B. Wells home.

  • I also came across a website with an article about how Illinois Institute of Technology is very interested in the future development of 35th st corridor, maybe we could get them to have their students draw up some renderings of 35th.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    I have an elderly neighbor that told be that many, many years ago, IIT would knock on doors of the homeowners to get them to sell their homes. This is proof to me that they most likely want the land and other realestate in the area. However they would probably want it at a huge discount. In order for this to happen, our property values would need to be driven down by crime and other factors like blocking desirable businesses from building in our community and only allowing questionable businesses to flourish. When I first moved to Douglas about 13 years ago, IIT was already participating in the Bronzeville Charette in collaboration with Gapco and the City of Chicago. My husband was a participant. The end result was that IIT got millions of the Bronzeville TIF to build their new Dorms, Delasalle got a large facility built on 35th and the residents who wanted 35th street developed, who actaually worked with the City of Chicago to develop a plan for desired businesses, got their time wasted. I say this because 35th is still blighted. If IIT wants to engage the community again, then it's probably because they want more Bronzeville TIF money for additional campus development. Does anyone know what happened to Leonas. They wanted to build a restaurant on 31st in the past. They actually sought out our community. We all know that the college students and community residents would have fully supported this business. Did someone block them from building in our area?? What is really going on?? On another thread, someone commented that Aldi's was no longer comin to Cottage Grove. Again is someone blocking businesses from developing? Is someone paying the businesses to stay away?? When we peel back the onion we may more than we could have ever imagined.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    I suppose the question that needs to be asked to our leaders is what business over that past 13 years have expressed an interest in operating a high quality business within Douglas? (Businessess that are larger than mom/pop stores like Leonas) The next question could be, if they wanted to buidd in our area, then what happened? What zoning get hindered, did realesate developers north of our community with the help of the Near South Planning Board discourage them?? Are the Instituions of Higher Learning in our area the culprits?? We have 20,000 residents, average income for a family about $100,000, for an individual $80,000 and yet we are unable to get a straight answer from Fioretti as to why we are unable to get a grocery store or other desirable businessess. Something has to be going on.. We are being forced to shop outside the area to support other communities. Perhaps this is the reason. Douglas is a prime place for desirable businesses, yet Fioretti talks about the history on our sidewalks, along with the statues, instead of addressing our need for viable high quality business development.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    I meant $150,000 not $100,000 according to the Census. Excuse my typos for "build" and "got hindered."

  • Grandma please don't refer to these elected officials as being our leaders. I'm a fan of yours, but please let's stop with this subjective attitude when it comes to these people who were elected to do the will of the people. Only in the black communities are they considered leaders. In any other community they are either the Alderman, or the Mayor, and in some communities the local dog catcher. They are voted into a position to SERVE the people not lead them. I'm only harping on this because we all need to realize that they work for us and if they don't do the as expected then we should fire them. Me myself, right now... they would be fired.

  • By the way grandma, you hit the nail on the head. Black communities are forced to purchase products in communities they don't live in. This is just another way of sucking the wealth out of our communities, along with drugs, and foreign business owners. Alderman Burns is well aware of this. He wants to make sure that the community west and South of Hyde Park have to spend their dollars in Hyde Park. Why else would he take the most viable commercial Avenue in our community (Cottage Grove) and committ it to low income housing as approved to retail development. Cottage Grove is right off the Drive and 1 minute from the Dan Ryan. Will Burns is not a fool, he is very calculating. By time people wake up it will be too late, by then it will be time to run another game on them. Uplifting Black communities in Chicago would political suicide. If we were to take our dollars and spend them in our community, then our community would be empowered. Will Burns and Pat Dowell couldn't bring anything to this community. They don't have the know how. Will burns has been the Alderman for less than two years and already he has given up on this community, saying the only way to bring businesses to this community is to bring low income housing. That is shear non-scented. What weak official.

  • I meant to say nonsense not non-scented. I also meant to say what a weak elected official.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    Thanks thatblows1, I try to remeber not to call them our leaders as I also feel like we are being sold out.

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    Hi Everyone,

    Tomorrow is the meeting to discuss this at 6:00 P.M. The King Center 4314 S. Cottage Grove Main many of us who have vented here will be there tomorrow?

    Can we have a show of hands please? I'd like to see if we can have an organized group of protestors. Will there be at least 5-10 people??

  • Transplant New to the south and LOVING it!

    I will be there!

  • I will be there. Lets organize.

  • I would be in that group so long as it only consisted of like-minded people... let's do it.

  • I'm there, Grandma might be on to something, something is fishy. Ald. Fioretti went vague when it came to Bronzeville.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    My husband and I usually attend these types of meeting, but I am working on a special project at work and my schedule ends at about 11:00 p.m. Please share the information online if you get a chance. I'm at work right now. Have to go now!!

  • After rattling off several accomplishments in other areas of his ward the only thing he could say about Bronzeville was what he did at Dunbar park, he seemed to back away from Bronzeville with the "it's only a small part of the 2nd ward". Which when you have 3 alderman all making claim to this area, the silly game is in full play. With what I suspect that CHA is a big land holder of this area we might be already behind the eight ball, they just won't admit it.

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    I will try to create a placard with EVERYBLOCK on it so that we can place it over where the group can congregate.

  • That works and lets us know where you'll be with the with placard. I have a feeling the place is going to be packed. I would also like to suggest for those who can; that maybe we try to be there at 5:30pm so we all sit together and may be even go over talking points.

  • GBresident Bronzeville Community Resident

    Here is the link to the actual Urban Institute Public Housing Transformation and Crime Report. I would like to suggest that we download read it, so that we are prepared to argue on the facts.

    Here are links to other reports and overviews concerning CHA's Plan for transformation.

    One thing that stands out from this report is that those families who were relocated were told they would be able to come back to the community if they want, but the overwhelming majority has chose not to. So those who were promised they could come back don't want to. Therefore their argument that people were promised they could come back doesn't hold water. What they are actually doing is building low income housing for a new generational cycle of poverty, crime, under-education, despair, and demoralized families. with little to no ability to up-lift themselves from their condition.

    See you guys tomorrow.

  • Meg M Slooper gone Hyde Park

    I'm not sure if I can make it tomorrow night with work. I'm new to the area and still learning, too; it won't help if I show up uninformed. For we newer south side residents, where can we go to learn more about the history of CHA policies? Or housing in Chicago in general? I think the concentration of subsidized housing in a handful of communities is crazy, but I want to learn more and be able to use their arguments against them...

    Totally agree with the posters who mentioned Cottage Grove. We live near there, and it's so frustrating that we have to wander down 53rd or 57th to find something to eat if we want to go to a nicer restaurant most of the time. I'm also baffled by the section of 53rd to our west, just past Washington Park: when you're a block from the El and a couple of blocks from a huge city park, you shouldn't be able to see anything but mixed-use development...all those empty lots speak volumes about the city's messed-up priorities.

    Good luck tomorrow, everyone!

  • GBresident Bronzeville Community Resident

    Meg-M try to show up tomorrow if you can. You will learn a lot. Also I posted a couple of links that will give provide you with factual information. Hope you are able to make it.

  • GBresident Bronzeville Community Resident

    Mspolitix, please look for me tomorrow.

  • I would point out that any redevelopment of the 35th St. corridor needs to start at State Street. DeLasalle and the police precinct both need to be forced to give up their ludicrous surface parking that robs the streetfront along both state and 35th and disconnects IIT and the newly built residential and retail from Bronzeville. Almost nowhere else in the City do you find an L stop that has absolutely zero retail immediately next to it.

    Connect IIT's State Street Village dorms down to the nearly empty Overton Building with mixed use retail/residential/office, and return the same down 35th Street, and we will have the beginnings of a revitalization of this corridor.

    Without being forced to go deep into the city to address their needs, IIT students would support any businesses that come through there, in particular restaurant/bar or school-related retail. Eventually those IIT students, as I did, would even actually CHOOSE to make the Bronzeville area their home (god forbid).

    Beyond that, the closing of All Faith Pavilion offers another perfect mixed-use opportunity to fill in the empty space between Giles & Prairie.

    The Pentecostal Church on Indiana could easily be partnered with in constructing a retail building along 35th that their ridiculous parking lot now occupies. A precast concrete structure would allow them to keep their parking on top of the new building.

    Everything along 35th is about the ability to walk in the neighborhood at a human scale. Nobody wants to walk past oceans of asphalt (or in Pentecostal's case, gravel) to get from place to place.

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    MegM I tried to do some background reading into the history of the CHA. I found this link informative. (

    When Congress passed the Housing Act of 1949, which provided substantial funding for public housing, CHA was ready with a map of proposed sites for projects to be built on open land throughout the city, but the city council rejected this map altogether. White aldermen rejected plans for public housing in their wards. CHA's policy thereafter was to build family housing only in black residential areas or adjacent to existing projects. This rejection explains the concentration of public housing in the city center on the South and West Sides.

    In 1966 a group of tenants sued the CHA, alleging that the agency was perpetuating racial segregation by siting projects in the ghetto. In Gautreaux v. Chicago Housing Authority, a federal judge enjoined CHA from building additional family housing in black residential areas. He ordered the agency to build scattered-site housing elsewhere in the city. Thereafter the authority built no more than a handful of scattered-site dwellings.

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    Hills v. Gautreaux -

    ......a number of Chicago families living in housing projects were awarded Section 8 vouchers allowing them to move to the suburbs in compensation for the housing project's substandard conditions.

    A number of families chose to move, while others stayed, and Northwestern University researchers studying the two populations concluded that low-income women who moved to the suburbs "clearly experienced improved employment and earnings, even though the program provided no job training or placement services.

    The disparity arguably proves that concentrated poverty is self-perpetuating and simply alleviating this concentration offers an avenue for improving the quality of life of those afflicted by urban poverty

  • Placing underserved citizens in an area with no employment and no services, is wrong. Any politician who does not see this or does not pretend to see the shortcomings in this doomed to fail scenario is blind or has not understood the history of this failed policy of lumping the poor in places with little resources inadequate education and little if any employment opportunities. The obvious result is CRIME and then we wonder how do we end this vicious cycle. Putting the fox together with the chickens is very predictable, I am very tired of these worn out, never worked ideas being shoved down our throats.

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon, since the Dixons get only positive press I dont know why you think I am bamboozled about Chess. My information is first hand. They are a foundation that refuses to open its books or account for all the money that has been raised for them in the past, by federal grant and by star fundraisers. It's great that they saved the building, but the time of the most beneficial care of it has passed to others. You better look at the artists who worked for Berry Gordy and Ewart Abner at VeeJay before you bring out the old saw about the Chess Brothers. Ripping off and underpaying artists was an equal opportunity pasttime. These old arguments are why nothing is getting done. Get over it and move on is what is needed.

  • Grandma, the history on the sidewalks of Bronzeville is one big key to attracting quality businesses in my opinion.

    Fioretti is a lame duck, I think this will adversely affect his ability to get anything done. I don't see the point of working with him any longer I'm afraid. If he needs the council or the mayor, what will they do for him?

  • Yes they have Ald. Fioretti in their sights, they cut his ward down to next to nothing, they really are trying to diminish his visibility. On the question of Mixed Income housing of the 50 wards, how many have these projects are destined for their wards?

  • Also in the report that Ald. Burns calls nuanced, in areas where CHA high rises were removed crime has decreased by 70%, now I can't speak for everyone, but for me once a problem is removed why bring it back.

  • CCoB -- Concerned Citizens of Bronzeville Our goal is to build power & resources in B'ville!

    Just an FYI to all of the folks leaving a comment. This whole CHA community meeting has left some confusion. This meeting is about the Urban Institute's Report on CHA and not a follow-up to the HUD Neighborhood Choice application. It's good to be organized about a movement, but also you have to look organized. This is like protesting to a book publisher that supplies books to a school system that provides low quality education. You are upset with the school system, not the book publisher. Get organized and determine your true target. Also, read the report in it's entirety, I'm curious to see what people think about the results. Like us Facebook too!

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    I think Ald Fioretti is being punished for challenging the power structure during the mayors race. He was very cautious in answering questions about Bronzeville and at times almost gave off an air of sadness.

    It seems that he knows way more than he was telling and probably didn't want to risk further damage by leaking it live on CanTV. We are a cash cow and no one let's one of those just wander away.

  • Mike in Bronzeville Concerned Home Owner

    Wendell could you clarify. I did not see the CanTV. What impression did Fioretti give?

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident
  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    Mike, I got that impression after Fioretti's answer to my on air question during the CanTv interview. I asked if he could explain why Bronzeville wasn't focused more on attracting business and retail as opposed to continuing with the failed experiment of low-income housing. (the south loop model vs. bronzeville's model)

    He paused and very gingerly began to describe our historic markers and sidewalks. As to the low income housing issue he said the entire city needed to agree housing of that type is needed and that effort would take vision. I agree in principle with that but realize that is not how the south loop became the retail juggernaut it is today.

    He said he often took investors and developers on tours of Bronzeville and their wasn't a concrete dealbreaker cited ruling us out of the marketplace scramble.
    (unless they had insider knowledge of CHA plans for rebuildng)

    Watch the CanTv segment and you can see how evasive he became. (thanks for the link Grandma) The two major apartment complexes located near McCormick place rival
    the spending density of most north or near northside neighborhoods, so it is dishonest to suggest we need even more economic data to convince the developers we are prospects and not suspects.

    It just seems so odd that no one has been willing after all this time to expand thier markets here. Unless of course they have been told hands off a bigger game is in play.

  • Grandma, did you mistakenly confuse me with Mike in Bronzeville? Btw, I look forward to meeting you.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    Yes Pastor Mike, I thought you wanted to know about the CANTV session. I didn't realize there were two Mike's. Thanks for letting me know.

  • Grandma, still looking to me you, let me know when and where?

  • Mike in Bronzeville Concerned Home Owner

    Thanks Wendell and thank you Grandma for the link. It looks like Fioretti was skirting your question, I wonder if that is a good or bad omen for us.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    I wonder too Mike....So many things seem to be hidden from us until the establishment is ready for an announcement. I hope the politicians are farsighted enought to see the folly of banking on importing the very poor in hopes they will placehold until the city finishes planning for high end developments down the road.

    We are the only ones who have and possibly will continue to risk investment/home owning in Bronzeville. Why risk damaging that and being forced to spend decades trying to repair the neighborhoods image?

  • I have a question, I attended a meeting for residents in the ward I live in with my alderman to have explained to me that a report that said as a result of CHA being removed from an area meant a 60% reduction in overall crime and a 70% reduction in gun related crime, was nuanced. Now within 2 hours after this meeting and within 3 blocks of where it was held a young man was shot to death in an CHA complex. My question is am I supposed to not act on the obvious and let someone give me there take on these events, I also was basically told be careful what you blog, well how else do you express your concerns, because I am tired of being underserved, I don't want crime in my neighborhood, this is not the norm, I had heard that in every session of the state of Illinois Legislature they tried to insist that sec. 8 vouchers be accepted citywide and was voted down everytime. What.......they don't want this everywhere in this City, could it be that they know what we live with everyday.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    Ray, you have captured it perfectly. Did someone suggest you might be better off not expressing your opinion?

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    Yes, at the ward meeting our blog from here came up and we were "warned" about it. Makes you wonder if the thugs in our neighborhood are the officials as well.

  • The Alderwoman that was before Perkwinkle spoke about the CHA lawsuit that was led by the residents of the CHA building at 39th and lake park, and she reminded everyone that a lot of us were one paycheck away from needing CHA housing so you should be a little more understanding. I also noticed that University of Chicago had a representative there not asking for anything but tweaking what they already had, it must be nice to just have something without any resistance. I learned that 53rd and 35th are looked at entirely different,

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    Thanks, GCF. Who was the speaker who offered the warning? Who is watching/reading this forum other than politician's? Most of the contact information is minimal and we may want to share that with Becca from EB to have a chat with them.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    Thanks for the information Ray. My opinion of that previous alderwoman is if she was that great she would be the sitting alderperson right now.

    Does she know that folks in Lincoln Park are no more than a mortgage payment of two from the street too? This economy has spared no one. Until we are forced to live in CHA housing (for free) why would we accept it knocking down our resell value?
    What a ridiculous argument for accepting the minimizing of our neighborhoods.

  • If it is any consolation someone complained to one of the HUD people that if it wasn't for section 8 Oakwood Shores would be vacant, so what was predictable is happening.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    Yup, I knew it.... The next announcement will be a conversion to all Sec. 8. We have heard loud and clear from folks of all backgrounds and incomes that say they would not live in those developments under any circumstances. So, it has to be deception to say the market rate component mixed with CHA/Affordable is viable.

  • You would be more likely to ban Section 8 and CHA than to get lower crime neighborhoods in the City to accept them. Your reps have to fear you more than they fear the greater numbers that support them.

    Business follows money. People were living in the South Loop for years without a grocery store. They didn't come here because of urban planning; they came when the money and number of people reached critical mass.

    53rd St has always been different from 35th St. If there were no U of C there would be no Hyde Park and parts of Kenwood.

    The fact that CHA housing would be put next to McCormick Place while they are trying to develop the area is very strange.

  • If you do the math, where are you going to house these folks, they had to own up to the fact that those displaced people completely destroyed good solid middle class neighborhoods, SouthShore, Chatham, etc.,you have to provide people with Jobs and resources not just place them in established areas, this is why the section 8 program worked in the northwest suburbs.

  • People would naturally move to where the rents are affordable and the jobs are unless some unnatural element like price supports are introduced. Of course there are not enough jobs right now.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    @ Ray, I suggested as much on the CHA PFT idea site. This will only work by exporting folks to suburban areas with jobs, training and opportunities. How the heck are they going to make it in a densely populated area with the following ills; food deserts, city unemployment rate of 11.7% (higher for AA's) and crime issues?

  • That alderperson who made those comments is Shirley Newsome.
    She also said "they outnumber us." So I guess we are suppose to submit and allow them to destroy our communities after working so hard to live the way we do. They are here on a pass.

  • The one thing I learned is that these arguments are striking a nerve because they have merit, you can't be silent and expect change. The best thing about being in this country is the ability to speak, and if you see something that is wrong and not speak about then you deserve what you get.

  • I have news for Shirley Newsome, she's not the only one who has bangers on speed dial if need be. We will not be silenced. This reeks of collusion and corruption. I have been in regular discussions with some of the wealthiest folks in the country about the development of Bronzeville. The discussions have gone surprisingly well. If I could ever get some monetary muscle to steamroll the alderman cronies who perpetuate this mess, the light will shine and the roaches will scatter. If I reach any definitive milestones in my discussions, I will notify you all privately. I am also working with some multimedia associates and PR people to blow the lid off of this reality when the time is right. I'm trying to angle it in a manner that will maximize political damage. Emperor Rham and his court may be in for quite a surprise;) I find it hilarious that Newsome had the balls to tell you to be silent! Really, in 2012 in America? I guess she's about as bright as some of the other folks I encounter around here on a daily basis;)

  • We that know the History of Bronzeville, know the potential also, in my opinion this is hollowed ground, with the number of prominent people and accomplishments in every field, T.K. Lawless,Ida B. Wells, Louis Armstrong, the birth of Gospel, Blues, Jazz, the soldiers that fought from the Armory on Giles in WWI, the greatest migration of any time in America took place here. On 33rd and Calumet stood the Civil War infamous Douglas prison, with all that has gone on here I would go out on a limb and say what is more enticing than to celebrate and build off of this, there is no area in Chicago that can make these claims, this is a TOURIST destination.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    Ray your are absolutely correct. One of our greatest assets is our voice and you should feel free to express your concerns without someone suggesting that you close your mouth while decisions are being made to impact the community. I read a comment in "The Lakefront Outlook" yesterday about Walgreens wanting liquor in their store on 47th. Many of us know that we now have liquor at the Walgreens on 35th. What I did not know was in the past was that Precwinkle gave her opinion concerning liquor at Walgreens on 35th & KIng Drive: "she may be negotiable on the store's 3405 S. King Drive location. The King Drive location did secure the right to sell alcohol in November 2011" So she suggested not on 47th, but negotiable on 35th.

    Ray my point is that you should continue to voice your concerns because it appears that the aldermen and other entities have no problem voicing theirs!!

  • Black politicians want to keep black folks poor, disenfranchised, and on the municipal teat. They then pander to these folks that they actually harm and seek credit for protecting their govt. subsidies! Bizzaro world for sure. It's shameful.I am all for providing help to those in need. That is not what this is about and the politicians all know it.No one else will willingly accept this housing in their wards so it's dumped in the same few. These folks are rather dim because the city could develop Bronzeville into a gold mine if they were not so short sighted. Wendell, you and I both knew that mixed income housing would turn into ALL subsidy housing for the reasons we have pointed out:/How else would it have gone? I guess we should just shut up and be happy to live in a slum or move the hell out of we don't like it?! All so a few politicians can continue to warehouse poor black folks in areas where they have no hope and no future, live with no resources, and anchor the politicians voting base. I say hell no. Let's bring this crap to light! This is really dispicable when you think about it!:(

  • Grandma I have to admit how stunned I was in that I was expected to ignore a study on the effects of CHA and crime, I live with this truth everyday, then to compound this you ask me to not sound off, well in my world that is not the definition of Democracy. I will speak when my neighborhood is in a bad condition, and I will work to make it better, it is my duty.

  • Ray,
    Perhaps you will find this link as ironic as I do? You will notice that Ms. Newsome describes herself as a "squeaky wheel" who outspokenly attempts to attract resources to her south side neighborhood. By suggesting that you/ we should be silent, her hypocrisy is embarrassingly evident. Foot in mouth....

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    JRMD thanks! Also to note that "For 18 years, she’s been the board chair of the Kenwood-Oakland Conservation Community Council, working to bring resources and attention to her underserved slice of the South Side."

    For 18 years she's FAILED MISERABLY time for change we are still in dire need of resources and are still underserved.

  • The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over and expect different results, time for new blood, fresh ideas and approaches, plantation politics are dead and rest in peace. The energy is here and will not go away. I am encouraged by what I have heard from people on here who have very well thought out plans that will indeed bring good change to this area, when the water rises all boats are lifted.

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    I read this story and am thankful we are being proactive and not reactive...evidence of yet another south side neighborhood's problem with CHA.


    Expect the very best today not only for yourself and your life, but your community and surroundings!

  • Happy making better choices

    I was at the mtg and was shocked at the warning myself. We don't agree with each other 100% of the time but we are able to express our opinions in this space so why the warning? No one is threatening harm but I guess some feel threatened by logical open discussion.

    As we all step outside of the silos the city has created, the light will shine on the need for a new day and action

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    @ Happy, we have to be striking a nerve by speaking out against this ill conceived development. I would think that any number of politicians should be rushing to condemn the warning and how clumsy it was to make a statement like that. I am however, glad she said it just to show how desparately they want this thing.

    These guys have a lot of nerve, we want to dialogue and set the tone for where we pay our taxes not the ELECTED reps.

  • Alderman Burns,
    I don't believe in that liberal nonsense of "we can't concentrate poverty". People need to live where they can afford. There is nothing wrong with low income people living in low income areas.
    If people want to live in nice areas they need to work hard and make something of themselves like everyone else who live in this did. Its not fair to homeowners who have their life savings and had to work had for their home while others don'have to do the same but will get the same.
    We don't want or need any influx of more poverty. If its so great Why isn't it done in Lincoln Park or Lakeview?
    You aren't dealing with docile sheep (your ideal constituancy) we don't believe or accept the mixed income B.S
    (thats mostly in middle class black areas).

  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    So for all those calling a meeting, we've set one up!

    Please RSVP here so we have an idea of how many are attending and it can be organzied.

    The information you enter on the form is CONFIDENTIAL only for me and the other organizer.

  • Alderman Burns
    We will not let our area be run dictatorial. You may not roll over us and impose your will against our wishes. This is a democracy, and you are a public servant. You job is to listen to what we want and follow our orders, we don't care what you think or have to say about anything that doesn't follow our wants and needs. You should be on the side that pays taxes and contributes to making the area better. Remember how it collapsed after the middle class left, and got better when we came back. You and Dowell are too comfortable with CHA. Let me inform you of what happened to the last person who was comfortable with the CHA . Alderwoman Tillman got fired , and the same will happen to you if you don't stop with this subsidised housing crap. We have hired you to represent us and our best interests so we will tell you what we want and you will do it or you will be standing in the unemployment line with Pooky nem who you gladly support.

  • Alderman Burns,
    There are very few stable middle class black areas. Why is this? So why would you and your other counterparts seek to destroy them or keep them down? Are you afraid that upperincome people aren't as easily fooled by your b.s, that you can't control us or keep us in our place under your thumb? I can asure you there is no need for you to worry about us as long as you do your job and side with us over them. You see what subsidised housing did to Chatham. At one point chatham was a vibrant middle class black area. We already have enough subsidised housing, CHA aleready owns too much property, then on top of that all the section 8 landlords.

    So the conclusion for today is this:

    We will find a challenger in the next election and we will finance that person and get rid of you. We are not just talking here. We need someone who shares our vision, goals, and values, and you and your counterparts, need to demostrate that.

  • @Tina Dawson

    You go girl!! I think it's safe to say that these charlatans have been put on notice.Just once I would want one of these "legacy figures" to have the intellectual honesty and courage to acknowledge that these policies do not work. How much has life improved for the average brother & sister in the areas of CHA BS? They are preventing these areas from realizing their potential and if that's not a civil crime, I can't imagine what is. Truly sad but there are some surprises in store. Stay tuned!!:)

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Bronzeville Conservator

    It is time to turn lemons in to lemonade!

    JRMD and Ray, you are representatives of the next generation of economic emancipators for Bronzeville, as an emerging international African American heritage tourism destination.

    The ultimate goal is to create wealth and economic sustainability for the masses and thereby break the cycle of poverty in Bronzeville! Partnerships for Sustainable Communities

    Heritage Tourism development is our wealth generator...

    Just returned from Springfield Illinois, advocating for state tourism funding for the historic Bronzeville community.

    Tourism: Illinois' Hidden Revenue & Jobs Generator

    $2 Billion
    The estimated amount of tax revenue generated by Illinois tourism each year. This funds education, health care, public safety and social services around the state.

    32,218 Teachers Salaries or 30,280 Police Officer Salaries or 38,948 Firefighters Salaries, the number of public service salaries that are equivalent to the revenues Illinois tourism generates each year!

    The number of jobs in Illinois that are related to tourism, Illinois tourism is one of the state's largest employers.

    The amount of money the average Illinois family saves in taxes each year because of Illinois tourism.

    $6 to $1
    The rate of return on investment that Illinois tourism generates. Every $1 spent on tourism promotion earns $6 in state and local tax revenue.

    86.4 Million
    The approximate number of visitors that travel to Illinois each year. New visitors means new money for the state.

    When international visitors come to Chicago, they seek the authentic cultural experience of electrified blues, jazz and gospel music and the grassroots politics that lead to the election of the first African American President of the United States.

    Bronzeville, has emerged as an African American oriented urban heritage tourism destination of international significance!

    Bronzeville Curmudgeon


  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    BC, have you heard if any of the NATO dignitaries or vistors will be touring Bronzeville? Sounds like a great opportunity to show ourselves globally.

  • @BC
    Fantastic!! Great info. We should meet as I would love to be involved. Why couldn't Bronzeville be as storied culturally as the French Quarter in NO!? Do you have any idea how much revenue the Quarter generates for their state!? Instead of warehousing people and perpetuating despair, let's create some economic generators for god's sake!!:)

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Bronzeville Conservator

    Bronzeville as an emerging tourism destination is:

    - An Employer.

    - a reliable source of REVENUE.

    - A SOLUTION to the state,city's budget woes.

    - A NECESSITY for the economic development of Bronzeville and the south lakefront region of Chicago!

    TOURISM: The ANSWER To Bronzeville's problems

    The Honorable State Representative for the 26th Legislative District Kimberly du Buclet, who represents the historic Bronzeville community in the Illinois General Assembly sits on the Convention & Tourism Committee.

    Incumbent 26th District State Representative du Buclet was not allowed to bring her candidacy before the voters of the 26th District in the recently held Democratic Primary election, but will be serving as your Bronzeville State Representative until her term ends in January 2013.

    Representative du Buclet district office is strategically located at 405 East 35th Street, in the historic Supreme/Liberty Life building at the Gateway to the Black Metropolis Historic District. Call her at 773-285-1110. Her e-mail address is

    She seems to be a very intelligent, articulate and dedicated African American legislator, who would be more that amenable to assisting her constituency in developing Bronzeville, as a premier heritage tourism destination.

    Bronzeville Curmudgeon


  • @gcf- Thanks for reading my post. I wish you luck in your efforts. Yes we have issues with CHA but we have always had issues with CHA. We have been one of the only African American communities to keep them from building high rises.

    A person you may want to reach out to is the Honorable Lewis Nixon. Prior to becoming a judge we was chief regional counsel for HUD and lead counsel for CHA.

  • I thought someone mentioned a planned CHA project near McCormick Place, but I cannot now find it on the thread. If anyone knows anything about this, please be so kind as to post it below. Thanks.

  • Did anyone hear The CEO of CHA talk about adding more
    section 8 housing at 51st and Lake Park during the meeting?

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    @ Catherine, I think this is the housing someone discussed earlier in the conversation; PRAIRIE COURTS 2615 S. Prairie CHICAGO, IL 60616-2817. I hadn't heard about more being planned so far....

    To date, it is pretty quiet as Mercy Hospital and McCormick place call the shots in the area. I am sure that both parties would discourage more housing coming to any nearby proximity. (Tourists, visitors, etc)

  • @ majurej, from my notes of the meeting the CHA President, Charles Kelly stated that a developer has applied for TIF funds for a project being built on 51st & Lake Park and as such there will now have to be low income/affordable units within the development.

  • Thanks Wendell. Well that creates one strong link between South Loop and Bronzeville. Clear, hold, build is my anti-crime philosophy.

    I see more clearly what folks are saying about the assimilating power of the suburbs to alter behavior. I think this is less true of any part of the city itself, except the extreme northwest side, having lived all over both.

  • Thanks T. W......JESUS @#$#$# CHRIST!

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    Your welcome Catherine:) There is no way an alderman could explain to those two entities how more low-income housing would be helpful in attacting conventioneers and tourism dollars.

    People still remember the years past when the projects were located nearby and how the tourists were cautioned not to go roaming through the neighborhood. Even the bike path was not exempt, ambushes and strongarming were common if you went too far past McCormick place. Now there are runners and bikes passing through freely and a new marina opening up next month!

    I think they get it and want to keep building on that platform going forward, at least I hope so. A strong link between Bronzeville and the South Loop is our best hope in keeping some sustained development going.

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Bronzeville Conservator

    Wendell, NATO is coming to Bronzeville!

    Call the Bronzeville Visitor Information Center. Speak with our Chief Information Officer, Norman Montgomery, who will provide details. 773-819-5170

    Amy Rule the Mayor of Chicago's wife, spoke glowingly about the historic Bronzeville community as an international tourism attraction, during her trip to the NATO Summit in Brussels!

    It is time to get organized Ray. JRMD, Catherine537, Wendell and anybody else on this tread that perceives themselves to be inspired economic and spiritual emancipators of Bronzeville....

    Anybody interested in building a new hotel and conference center in Bronzeville?

    We will be needing the additional rooms beyond the new Hyatt hotels under construction, and supported by your tax dollars at McCormick Place and in in Harper Court in Hyde Park.

    Where is a good place to erect a new hotel in Bronzeville?

    Bronzeville Curmudgeon

  • To: Bronzeville Curmudgeon:

    Here's a great location for a hotel in Bronzeville (see weblink below):

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    BVIC, I just read something about The NearSouth Planning Board

    This organization was north of Douglas and I noticed that they are now in Douglas at 2600 S Michigan. This organization has been in existence for many years and mentions their connection with communities not only north of us like Burnham Park, Central Station and Chinatown, IIT, but areas of Douglas as well: The GAP, Lake Meadows, Prairie Shores, South Commons, Mercy Hospital, Woodland Park.

    I noticed that they mention themselves as a community organization serving businesses, property owners, developers and institutiuons for 64 years.

    Another curious comment mentioned on their website is that they promote the neighborhood, monitor direct growth, interface with the city and work to eliminate blight.

    Is anyone on this thread affiliated with this organization?? It appears that IIT, Illinois College of Optometry, Draper & Kramer, DelaSalle, McCormick...have a connection to this organization as well.

    BVIC are you connected with this organization?? You keep talking about plans for this area. Do they work with you or against you in regards to development plans??

    On another note, a hotel at 3113 S. Rhodes, right off the lake would be the best spot. Pershing East (pre K - 3rd grade)) is currently at that location, but it could join with Pershing West (4th-8th) at 3200 S Calumet for this to occur. There is enough space for them to become one school or share the same building.

    Again a hotel right off the lake that has a roof deck cafe, small omnimax...could be nice!!

    Again this is just food for thought. I can only make sort comments because this is a busy season for me at work as I am at work right now. This is just an answer to your question!!

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    Have to go!!

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Director, Bronzeville Visitor Information Center


    Have you checked out the boardf of directors of the Southside Planning Board and whos' interest they represent. Very few African Americans on the board and no institutions that represent the authenic African American cultural experience of south lakefront communities.

    In my grassroots opinion the South Side Planning Board represents regentrification in its most arrogant form, and the re-establishment of white supremacy in the real estate development of south lakefront communities.

    So ask Leroy Kennedy from IIT who serves on the board, what is new, innovative, inclusive or racially collaborative about the South Side Planning Board after being around for the past 64 years?

    Rember, that same group of established white real estate interests drove the demolition of the historic Pickford Theater!

    Bronzeville Curmudgeon

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    BVIC I do not know enough about this organization to pass any judgements. On the topic of the Pickford Theater, I remember an article in the newspaper about it and Pat Dowell gave the impression that the building had to be demolished as if it could not be saved.

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Director, Bronzeville Visitor Information Center

    Grandma, are you of African American decent?

    Historically, real estate development in Chicago has always been dominated by politics, geography, race and class.

    The Pickford Theater building was a beautiful landmark structure of significant value that could have been saved and reutilized just like the Supreme/Liberty Life building, Chicago Bee Building and most recently the Forum building at 43rd & Calumet.

    DelaSalle High school administrators were put in charge of maintaining the histroric structure by the Daley Administration. The school systematically neglected its responsibilty to preserve and maintain the structure, allowed it to deteriorate until 3rd Ward Alderman Pat Dowell consented to its demolition.

    These Bronzeville landmark buildings are important because they represent African American historical institutions. We are concerned about the preservation and adaptive reuse of the old Defender building at 34th & Indiana and Unity Hall at 3140 South Indiana!

    Both building are on the National Register of Historic Places under the catagory of the "Black Metropolis Historic District". A dedicated group of civic leaders and urban preservationists including myself, under Mayor Harold Washington won the landmark designation for Bronzeville in 1983.

    What has the South Side Planning Board done in its 64 year history, to preserve or enhance any African American cultural experience or institution in predominantly Black south lakefront communities of Chicago?

    Maybe as a grandmother, you have not been around long enough to really understand the authentic 100 year old histrory of Bronzeville, and the racial restrictive covenants that were emposed on Afrcian Americans by civic leaders associated with the University of Chicago?

    Bronzeville Curmudgeon

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    BVIC, I was excited when I initially heard that DelaSalle would restore the Pickford Theater as well. When DelaSalle purchased the building, was it purchased using Bronzeville TIF?? did Pat Dowell offer to restore this structure using TIF funds? This building sat vacant for years before DeLasalle purchased it. Where were the historic preservationists then?? These are just questions that are crosisng my mind right now.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    BVIC the Near South Planning Board assisted me in getting new street lights for our area, I am not a member of that organization but I did call them and ask them to support me in new street lights for the Calumet/Giles/Prairie Landmark District under previous Alderman Haithcock. I shared that a proposal with a petition with signatures had already been submitted to our alderman and the president of tthis board did assist in the endeavor!! To make a long stroy short, street lights began to be installed from 31st-35th on Giles. This was my only dealing with this organization at that time.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    I also want to mention that in the propasal that was submitted, I also requested for our street, sidewalks and sidewalks to be redone and that was taken care of as well!

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    Sorry, I meant "streets, sidewalks and curbs."

  • Sheila A. Donovan Have been an owner at the Stratford since 2001.

    It took me 6 months to get the NSPB to act on getting 26th St. between Michigan & State cleaned up. The very building that the Board is in is one of the guilty parties of not keeping sidewalks shovelled in winter and trash off their lawn & sidewalk. The cab company used to have flowers just outside of their fence. Now it's weeds and trash. The empty building at the N.W. corner of Wabash & 26th is a major trash area. Empty booze bottles, car oil bottles, dirty diapers, dead pigeons, broken glass bottles. Under the L is another garbage-filled are. Mercy Hospital's vehicle lot at 26th & State always has garbage outside their fence, as does the empty lot on the north side of the street.

  • Sheila A. Donovan Have been an owner at the Stratford since 2001.

    I'd been cleaning that area, personally, for years and needed help. After 6 mos. of back and forth contacts with the NSPB, the Kiwanis Club agreed to help clean up. They got kudos for being so helpful to the neighborhood. (My name was never mentioned.) Well, months have passed and the garbage is collecting again. I can't do any cleaning, as I've had health problems. I want the owners of these properties to be FINED for not keeping them clean. The South Loop Hotel at 26th & State has guests from all over the world....Asia, Europe, Africa, South America. I have personally spoken with them at the State Street bus stop. Many guests are attending McCormick Place Conventions, others are vacationing. They see the dead pigeons, empty booze bottles, weeds and are suprised that a hotel would be in an area like this. I can't fight the garbage by myself. We need to get the OWNERS to clean up!

  • While there has been a lot of talk about CHA tenants, there has not been much mention of absentee landlords and slumlords in the area. These two, who at times are one in the same, cause a lot of harm in the community.

  • Good point! We have to deal with the building management companies and make them responsible for allowing bad CHA tenants in their buildings, but how?

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Director, Bronzeville Visitor Information Center

    In short Grandma, DeLaSalle High School was awarded the landmark Pickford Theater by the Daley Administration. Thereby city of Chicago tax payers subsidized the demolition of this important historical structure, while clearing prime real estate on 35th Street & Michigan Avenue for future expansion of the high school.

    In grassroots terms, it is called a landgrab!

    Another glaring example of insider patronage politics, where a private sector institution benefited directly from tax payer subsidies, in acquiring prime real estate, while at the same time destroying the authentic African American cultural history of Bronzeville.

    Another demonstration of a predominantly white Irish catholic institution acquiring more wealth and prime real estate at the direct expense of tax payers and inner city African American communities in Chicago.

    This unfortunate and unneccessary demolition action against the historically significant Pickford Theater building represents business as usual in Chicago politics....

    Bronzeville Curmudgeon

  • S.A.D, I walk 26th St. frequently and agree it is in need of improvement. It would be nice if the area could be designated for the court supervised workers who do clean-up at various locations. I've seen them on King Dr, near McDonald.

  • Alderman Burns,
    Now that you have voted affirmitively for the mayor's "Restore Chicago" private equity trust, what resources and strategy will you deploy to ensure a healthy part of that revenue makes it to your ward? I would suggest that if you are going to continue to support a disproportionate ration of CHA in our area, the least you could do is jockey for some if this proposed funding? Mayor Rham claims that there is only one initial project tee'd up. I can't imagine a better opportunity to make the case for the development of the Michael Reese site, Bronzeville and it's historic landmarks and the corresponding infrastructure. The pragmatist in me is rather skeptical but we would love to hear your plans for getting in on these funds for our area. This inclues alderman Dowell as well.

  • What we need now is a visionary and a mover and shaker up of things and someone with enough fight to step up and demand what we need, Ald. Burns this can be your golden hour, we are not going to be satisfied with buisness as usual and I think you are aware of this, Hyde Park and Univ. of Chicago will be okay with the rubber stamp, they are well established, but we need a fighter and you can almost concentrate your resources on this end of your ward, be bold make no little plans. This is who I want to get behind.

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Director, Bronzeville Visitor Information Center

    Ray, you and JRMD are the next generation of Bronzeville civic leadership that needs to step up and organize private sector resources for strategic entrepreneurial development enterprises.

    Black Metropolis Convention & Tourism Council (BMC&TC) a 501c3 not-for-profit Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) for the historic Bronzeville community was involved significantly in assisting and supporting Berand Lloyd in acquiring the landmark Forum building.

    BMC&TC's sustainable vision for the Forum building includes a fresh flower shop on the first floor east side of the building, just off the alley at the Green line el; a roof top outdoor sitdown restaurant on the second floor and dressing rooms on the rear 3rd floor section of the building to accomodate live theater performances.

    In addition the rear first dock area should be utilized for a regular Saturday morning farmers market where neighborhood farmers can sell their fresh produce. These progressive visions for the revitalization of the Forum building and the recently demolished Pickford theater building, have been floating around among civic minded residents in the Bronzeville community for at least a decade.

    Hopefully, the new gentry including some of you younger upwardly mobile residents, will assist Bernard Lloyd in developing the Forum building into an anchor attraction on the Muddy Waters 43rd Street Blues District.

    Ray and JRMD, how strong is your indiginous vision for Bronzeville's emergence as an internationally significant heritage tourism destination?

    Bronzeville curmundeon

  • GBresident Bronzeville Community Resident

    I just want to point out to everyone concerned about our community being saturated with CHA housing, that the Bronzeville Curmudgeon is NOT on our side. When ever the post goes in the direction of people getting fired-up, and on one accord concerning the CHA issue, he tries to appease the conversation, by distracting or redirecting the conversation. Not only has BRVC done that in this post, but go back to other post and notice when it is that he/she jumps into the fray. It's when a movement is about to begin (or at least this is how it seems to me). Why not start a separate post to discuss something non-CHA related? Please I don't want this post to turn into an argument between me and BVLC, I think it's important to keep the focus on this proposed CHA expansion that could potentially lay waste to our community. If we're truly concerned about this CHA Iissue we can't afford to be side-tracked on this issue. I can't force bvlc to start another post in order to develop dialogue around his primary concerns, I can't make bvlc stop his pandering, nor can I make him stop scouring the different post searching for momentum to to suck the life out of, all I can ask is that we don't fall for the okey-doke.

  • GBresident Bronzeville Community Resident

    Our community is saturated with CHA housing, while our schools are being closed down, and turned-around; not mention there are no jobs, we live in a food desert. There is no place within reasonable distance of these home to acquire personal, and home keep products, the streets are in disrepair, there is no place for low income residents to aquifer various levels of medical attention. In other words this community does not have the infrastructure to support the low income housing that already exist, but our Alderpeople want to bring more CHA housing to this community. Does that make sense?

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    James I thought I was the only one who noticed this observation. There is an organization in Bronzeville that wants this area 100% African American and I wish I had bookmarked the site, because I am unable to remember the name of their alliance. They want; all businesses black owned, the community all black by any means necessary and I got the impression that they would be happy with CHA saturation as long as the community was black.

    A few months a go I saw a comment on the now closed "Chicago News Cooperative" by Harold Lucas at BVIC his comments were very abrasive to the extent that a white family in Douglas became very upset and mentioned that there are also white families that live in our community as well. He noted to Harold Lucas that our area was white before it became black and that his ancestors lived in our community as well. He went on to say that he still lives in Douglas because he likes it here. We all know that Douglas is diverse and some of the owners probably are here because Frankk Lloyd Wright designed some of the homes or because the creator of our community , Senator Stephan A Douglas who debated President Lincoln, has his tomb and the school that was built in the 1800's at 3200 S. Calumet still standing...... My point is, they are proud of their history as well and they they feel that it should not be ignored. I value diversity as my ancestors are from Ghana and we also have Japanese in our family, so I am sensitive to all races who would like to preserve their history.

    However, I also believe that all the homeowners are all on board with the CHA issue. In October, 2010 I reported to our state representative Taskforce how the City of Chicago uses CHA saturation to destroyvibrant black communities and then sell the land for $1 to developers. Our investments are not valued and it is sad how certain black politician ignore our concerns. They know that they are helping developers when they destroy our communities.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    James you are right about our schools being closed. I mentioned to State Representatives on the Chicago Educational Faciliies taskforve that transferring CHA families to Bronzeville is also a transfer in low academic performance from one community to another because they also enroll in our schools and the majority of them are failing students. Schools are the backbone of the community. If the school is stellar, it will attract homeowners and if it is failing, it is a drawback to many homeowners who have a vested interest in their children education.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    I believe the Donors Forum of Chicago is the place to go in order to receive guidnace on how to find out how an organization get's there funding. This place is a research library for organization that need grant funding. However when I was there about ten years ago, and someone there an application on there computer system that showed how to pull up tax returns, and on them it showed the grant information. My point is; some organizations may push for CHA because they run off of grants related to underserved communities. Therefore they fight to keep blight in the community for there own self-serving reasons to the detriment of our quality of life.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    Thanks James!! I started work late to make my comments!! Have to go now!!

  • GBresident Bronzeville Community Resident

    grandma you hit the nail on the head. There is no way the destruction of a growing community couldn’t be deliberate. The points you hit on, I’ve saying for the longest, so have others. It’s great when others recognize what you realize. It let’s me know that my perspective isn’t foreign.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    James, you and Grandma have peeled back the Onion totally. All these events are coodinated and planned to hold back Bronzeville until other interests can take over. It is clear that when the usual suspects start trying to steer the conversation they want us to stay away from this conclusion.

    Clearly, it seems there is a plan to thwart us from living as carefree and productively the South Loop or Prairie District residents do. Never more clearly was this demonstrated after I saw the news clip of the Prairie District neighbors at the Second Presbyterian Church the other night.

    I knew the meeting only was held for the community there because the politicians recognize them as a threat if not treated with respect. Guys, where the hell is our meeting for Bronzeville residents within three to four blocks of this deal? A hastily pushed e-blast or minimalist flyer to be distributed at zero hour is what it appears we are going to get!


  • GCF Resident in the Kenwood area since 2006

    A big shout out to Grandma and James! Thanks for addressing the racial tone that some were taking making those of us who were non African American wonder if we dont belong here.

    We all need to be proud of where we came from and focus on the bigger picture of where we are going from here. To like an individual because he’s black is just as insulting as to dislike him because he isn’t white.

    Just remember racism is when you have laws set up, systematically put in a way to keep people from advancing, to stop the advancement of a people and thats what we are fighting! FOCUS!!!


    Thank you GCF. We moved here because we wanted to be in a more diverse area. While looking at our place, we observed people of various races, and thought, this looks good. Then after being on this board a bit, I did retreat and began to wonder if we belonged here.

    I've always felt a wide range of people in a community makes it vibrant, interesting, and economically viable. We have friends from all over. However, I get the impression that BC would help me pack my bags.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    GCF, GRD everyone else in the comunity is glad to have you and we want to show ourselves welcoming to anyone who wants to live in or even visit Bronzeville. Kinda crazy to try and attract tourists with such non-inclusive rhetoric.

    I have lived in many places in the city and they ALL welcomed me as a neighbor and friend.


    Wendell, thank you! I know I must not let one overly active voice speak for others.

  • Mike in Bronzeville Concerned Home Owner

    GRD you are more than welcome and I have to chime in on the shout out to Grandma and James well said both of you.

  • Sheila A. Donovan Have been an owner at the Stratford since 2001.

    I, too feel tension on this board. I live in the Stratford where everybody gets along and are friends with each other. Our building has people from around the world, all colors and nationalities. All ages are represented in this building, too. We like it and would have it no other way. (I cringed at the person who wrote some anti-white-Irish-American-Catholic comments.) We are all people and should work together to improve our neighborhood. That's the common goal.


    Thanks, Mike and Shelia and too the others that expressed thanks by clicking that button, it means a lot to me.

    It also give me hope that more people are of the opinion that united we stand, divided we fall.

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  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Director, Bronzeville Visitor Information Center

    So Grandma, are white folks now coming back to Bronzeville to reclaim the land after discriminating against black in Bronzeville for the past 100 years. We can prove bronzeville began in 1916 as a predominantly Black community when white people moved out of the community to get away from black people.

    Yesterday a group of white students from Notre Dame University and I were blessed to take a tour of Blues Heaven Foundation. Willie Dixon's grandson was our tour guide for this great landmark facility on the history of Chicago blues. He was authentic in his presentation and spoke indepth about how his grandfather's legacy will be preserved in the old Chess records building as the city plans a blues district for the south loop.

    The whiter students on the tour of Bronzeville from Notre Dame University did not preceive me to be racist!

    Geographically, part of the south loop is in Bronzeville. Let's not forget the record row history including Vee Jay records is part of Motor Row.

    White people are always trying to rewrite the historical contributions of Black people in Chicago.

    Do you know who Richard Wright was?

    On this coming Friday, PBS is coming to the Bronzeville Visitor information Center to interview Prof. timuel Black and myself about the literary works of Richard Wright and his contribution to Bronzeville between 1927 and 1937.

    Yes I am going to dialogue on the international record about how white people systematically discriminated against black people in Chicago for the past 100 years.

    Here is a quote from Richard Wright in the forward to the book Black Metropolis. 'Will the negro find a meaning in his humiliation, turn his slums and sweat shops into modern cathedrals out of which will be born a new spirit that will guide him towards freedom

    Again in 2012, with a Black President in the White House from Chicago, this city is still the most segregated big city in America.


    Bronzeville Curmudgeon


    "I think it is disingenuous and insidious for white people on this thread to portray themselves as Africans Americans."

    Wow...I don't think anyone is doing that, what proof of it do you have?

    The point is, racism does exist, true. It exists in both camps. The other problem, in my opinion is to fight what you call white racism the same way, by exclusion of people. Racism is evil. Making people choose sides perpetuates the problem. Working together and moving forward ends it.

    You say Chicago in 2012 still remains the most corrupt and segregated, sure it is, because we keep doing the same thing.

    Yeah, don't don't get it twisted, don't get bambloozled! Sure let's get everyone all riled up. This reminds me of all the alerts at the airport RED, ORANGE... etc., hmm as long as we keep people afraid, we'll get reelected. More of the same.

    BC, sounds like you don't like change. As I said, we moved here because it was diverse, and I've also said on other threads that you've been on that I'm White, I haven't hidden that fact. I moved here thinking it's close to the lake, close to transportation, and I love the housing stock, it's beautiful. I was well aware that I was going to be in the minority here, that doesn't bother me at all.

    The only change I want to see here is more businesses, so we can have a fully functioning neighborhood. For most of us having these discussions, that's what they want too. In the end it comes down to income, and CHA residents aren't top income earners. I'm not for getting rid of what we have, I'm for a distribution throughout the city.

    Racist regentrification??? I don't know why gentrification has to be a bad thing. I have Black friends, and they all seem to like the same stuff that I do. So pardon me for not accepting this as a concept.

    Some of my friends have been called elitist Blacks, they just shake their heads about that one.


    And, for what it's worth, we bought here after 2008, so I'm not angry about the market, and we plan for this to be our home for many years, not a quick sale.

    So stop stereotyping.

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    BVIC the reason we purchased a row house in Douglas was because it was near a beach, close to a major hospitals, right by major exressways, near a major university, near a grocery store and a few steps away from downtown! An although I treasure the history of the community in which I live, it is certainly not I why I took out a 30-year mortgage for a rowhouse. I also do not need a history lesson as I am familiar with both the black & white history of Douglas/Bronzeville. You ask me do I know who Richard Wright was and my answer is yes. However I marvel the Creator of the Heavens and Earth, the sea and all that dwell there in. The one who made us in his image and likeness. The one who told us to love our neighbor as thyself. For God so loved the world that he gave.....and there is no ther that is greater!

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    "There is no other that is greater"

  • grandma 13-year Douglas resident

    Did you know that God also has standards. He does not want evil doers in his Kingdom, so why should we let anyone into our community even is they are drug dealers, robbers and perpetuators of blight??

  • This will be my first and possibly last comment about this....I now see that this has denigrated to race. I am not surprised, this thread initially got mean spirited talking about those who are not economically as well off as others, so the tone had already gotten ugly. I wonder if anybody took notice when the 15 year old young lady from public housing mentioned how bad she felt reading these post?
    Now are we going to start looking at everybody based on how much they earn, what color they are or how long they have been living here? I thank God that I have grown to look at each person as a creation of God, even those who struggle financially. This community still has great potential and there are a LOT of bright spots within it, if only we could began to highlight and appreciate them and work on the things that are wrong. I enjoy living, working and worshipping in THIS community.

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  • GBresident Bronzeville Community Resident

    grandma, GRD, GCF, Wendell, Ray, JRMD, Tammi B., Catherine537, CCofC, tina dawson, thatblows1, Transplant, Concerned Mom, majurej. If we allow Bronzeville Curmudgeon to redirect our attention with nonsense, then we will really be fighting an uphill battle attempting to drive home our position home to those that actually matter. Let’s ignore his post they’re baseless and pointless, and discredit our intellect and resolve.


    It is apparent that BC has gone off the rails, now it's White supremacy? Again, wow! BC, you're the only one that has gone this thread and inquired about what race someone was. No one here has asked for that information for anyone else.

    James, you are absolutely correct about moving on. I'd like to see us concentrate on business development and lowering crime.

  • GBresident Bronzeville Community Resident

    Absolutely, GRD. And I firmly believe we have the minds and resources to within our community to bring the businesses in. We must figure out how to get our elected officials on board with the socioeconomic development of Bronzeville and Chatham. And I’m sure will. I just want say that I am excited to see folks doing why they can and uniting. We all realize that the CHA issue is not separate of business development nor lowering crime. We all realize that the issues we must address to make our community stronger inter-related. There are those of fight the fight on the blogs, keeping our issues in the forefront, and there are those of who take it to the streets (so to speak), what ever it is that we do how ever we do it, we do it because we believe there can be a greater community. that’s why it bothers me when people attempt to sabotage progress, whether it be progressive dialogue, or progressive action. Those of us that want our community to progress do something. I enjoy talking with everyone on the blogs, and I enjoy meeting with those that come out at various meetings. We all want a better community. I believe we’re going to become larger, more organized, more focused, stronger, and we will get what we want. ( a thriving community). not to sound to corner, but I am proud of all of you that engage in sharing your ideas, thoughts, and beliefs. That lets me know that there are still people in this community that haven’t been ground to dust by the machine.

  • GBresident Bronzeville Community Resident

    Please excuse my earlier typos.


    James, looks like I have my share of them also.

    Above should be: *that has gone on the thread... I missed the "on".

  • S,A,D@Stratford, please have management check the integrity of the 26th Street wrought iron fence, the western most section seemed to be leaning north toward the sidewalk when I walked past on a windy day. Thanks.

  • Sheila A. Donovan Have been an owner at the Stratford since 2001.

    Lesss, we don't have a fence on the west side of our building. (The front of our building.) Do you mean the fence on the north side of the Stratford?

  • Sheila A. Donovan Have been an owner at the Stratford since 2001.

    BC, I am not a racist and I am not a sneak, hiding the fact that I am Caucasian. You can see it in my photograph. You seem to be the person who wants to keep blacks segregated. If I was racist, I would not be living in the Stratford. I would not be tutoring black and Hispanic kids (on a volunteer basis) for 25 years.

    I think you need to do some soul searching and mind broadening and stop putting hateful comments on this thread.

  • Sheila A. Donovan Have been an owner at the Stratford since 2001.

    The above post should go to GRD, not BC, sorry. GRD I am not a racist. Read the post I addressed to BC in error.


    Should go to me? Why? I never inquired about your race or called you a racist. BC is the only one that asked someone their race, and also accused people of hiding it.

    The beginning of one of my posts was quoting BC.

    "I think it is disingenuous and insidious for white people on this thread to portray themselves as Africans Americans."

    Then I asked the below.

    Wow...I don't think anyone is doing that, what proof of it do you have?

    Really now!


    For the record, I never asked anyone, because it's not a concern of mine.


    Shelia, I'm still waiting for you to get back to this, as your post was pretty upsetting to me. BC was the one, I don't get why you'd retract that to him, that is where it belonged.

  • S,A,D@Stratford,Sorry I wasn't more specific- please have management check the integrity of the 26th Street wrought iron fence, the western most section seemed to be leaning north toward the sidewalk when I walked past on a windy day. Thanks. The 26th Street fence is on the north side of the building, it is the section of fence closest to Indiana Ave that seems to be unstable as I walk past almost daily, Again Thanks.

  • Sheila A. Donovan Have been an owner at the Stratford since 2001.

    GRD, I apolgize for addressing that to you in error. Scrolling up and down, created the confusion. I wish this site had a system that you could reply directly, within the space of the original comment. Again, I apologize

  • Let's stay focused and on topic friends!:) There is much work that needs to be done. Have a wonderful(yet chilly) weekend!:)

  • Man I have been away for a bit, what has happened to our discussion, let me try to be the voice of reason here. We here on this blog have way more in common than we know, We all live in and want what is best for Bronzeville, to reduce this to a discussion based on race is playing the silly game, let us be bigger than that. Trust me the Alderman is studying this conversation so let's get back on point. We have all invested here and have great insight to the needs of this community, getting caught up in racial qualifications is getting us away from what is important. I drove the area on sunday with my wife from 26th all the way to 57th from state all the way to the Lake, and was impressed with the number of mixed income projects already in place and the ones that are under construction, when you factor in the ones on the drawing board, well I think we have enough.What I also noticed was how beautiful this area truly is and the raw potential it has. When I think of a well developed community, it is like North ave., Lincoln ave., Old Town(Wells st.), Clybourne corridor, 53rd, 57th, so on and so on, what these areas have that we have do not have we have all expressed in great details on this blog, every voice is important and every voice should be heard and we should welcome the good and throw out the bad.


    Shelia, thank you for addressing the error.

    JRMD, and Ray, while I understand it's important to stay on topic, I couldn't just leave the post go unanswered. I'm sure you'd speak up if you were in my place.

    Ray, I do think we've been the voices of reason, however a few of us did see a person on the board that tried to stir things up in a bad way. When someone does that, it's important to lay it at their feet and call them on it.

  • when we are individuals we are weakend, when we come together is when we become strong. I have read a lot on here I don't agree with but the Big picture is our "community" that we live in and how to make it better, and I feel good about the People who have spoken here, they can be from wherever, what does that have to do with anything, I truly don't care, who says "I want to live in a bad neighborhood", right nobody. Ideas and visions have no color and are not about any race, once we get past this and we will, we are going to get back to the task at hand.

  • when a neighborhood is bad it's bad for everybody, same as when it is good, I cannot be true to myself and be content with my neighborhood as it is without doing anything about it, I don't care who is talking about making it better, just as long as they are talking.

  • Very interesting report on retail for area need pdf reader:​TheMetropolis_MarketStudy.pdf

  • Sheila A. Donovan Have been an owner at the Stratford since 2001.

    Lesss, I talked to the management office. They are aware that the fence leans slightly. They had examined it and determined that it doesn't present a danger, so currently will leave it as it. They will bring up this issue with the board.

  • Nikon shooter Bronzeville Resident

    Interesting reading in today's Chicago SunTimes:

    Some of these developments are right here in Bronzeville...

  • Bronzeville Curmudgeon Bronzeville Conservator

    May day, May day!!!

    May 1st, 2012

    Wendell in Bronzeville: You might have opened Pandora's box by drawing attention to a Monday April 30, 2012 Chicago Sun-times THE WATCHDOGS story.

    This under exposed feature story, is about a clout connected real estate development corporation, that has traditionally over billed city, state and the federal government for multiple millions of tax payer dollars.

    These funds were extorted by the developer while building so-called affordable mixed income housing development projects in Bronzeville, like Lake Park Crescent apartments, at 1061 E. 41st Street, South Park Plaza apartments, at 26th and King Drive. Park Boulevard, 3506 South State Street, Pershing Courts apartments, 39th and State and Chicago View Terrace apartments, 4801 S. Cottage Grove.

    This story reflects the inherent culture of corruption that has historically abused the tax payers of Chicago, for the benefit of a clouted and selected group of individuals who traditionally have controlled this city.

    Selected people in Chicago, have gotten wealthy from the failed and delinquent Chicago Housing Authority "Plan for Transformation".

    Stop blaming lower income public housing residents for the inflated real estate market that has effectively exploited and disenfranchised the so-called Black middles class in Bronzeville, and every body else who pays taxes in this corrupt city.

    Bronzeville Curmudgeon


  • Major question......How do you get around this ol boy network? Do we really have a say in this, or our we wasting time thinking that everything is on the up and up.

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