A library slated to be built in Barack Obama’s name is having a tough time breaking ground. This time around the hold up is oh, so ironically delicious.
After several years in the making, construction for the project was finally due to start 2018, but will be delayed from this year until next so that a federal review process can take place, the Washington Times reported.
According to the Times:
Before the presidential center can be built, the federal government will review its impact on Jackson Park. The park on the city’s South Side is on the National Register of Historic Places. The project’s environmental effects will also be analyzed. Any adverse effects must be resolved before construction is allowed.
The revelation that an environmental impact study was a big part of the delay sent people’s “irony meters” on overdrive.
Every time I think irony is dead, the Lord deems fit to shower me with unmerited favor… https://t.co/gNQsGBBAoa
— Like Uber, but for Libs (@UberLibs) July 31, 2018
You gotta love it- Mr. Regulation tied up in regulations https://t.co/IkKOMIa9R4
— PKM04558 (@PKMinMaine) July 31, 2018
Awesome and ironic! https://t.co/oIQYXx0kKG
— Osucowboys (@osucowboys) July 31, 2018
The Obama Foundation said it plans to break ground for the half-billion dollar project in 2019, but no specific date has been announced, the Times reported.
The presidential compound will consist of three buildings but has been plagued with set backs from the beginning. From its questionable architecture, to everyone wanting a piece of the action, the project has been met with mockery, and even protests at every turn.
Obama’s library was inspired by some of the greatest art of our time pic.twitter.com/AdHqteeE8g
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) January 10, 2018
via @chicagotribune: Chicago’s City Council meeting promises to draw a big crowd Wednesday because…
• Police union calls on members to protest
• Obama Library proposal
• $95 million police academy on the West Side #NoCopAcademy pic.twitter.com/RBPh1AC0uA
— Rachael Perrotta ? (@plussone) May 23, 2018
There’s been a lot of protests over this indulgence to himself. Only Obama would do something like this to the State and City that he claims to be his home town. What do you bet that Trump pays for his own Presidential Library completely?
— Josh “Chain Breaker” Randell (@JoshRandell3) June 16, 2018
The delays seem to be taking a toll on the Obama Foundation who are feeling a sense of “urgency.”
“We have a sense of urgency about this project (and) when we started, we wanted the public to know we would break ground as soon as possible,” said Michael Strautmanis, the vice president for civic engagement for the foundation, the Chicago Tribune reported. “But we also knew there were some things that were not in our control. We insist on going through the process with integrity and without rushing.”
With the announcement of the latest delay, the Black Youth Project 100 Chicago Chapter is demanding much more than just the mammoth library compound.
The Tribune reported:
“We have a new window of opportunity before the next election to protect the most vulnerable people in our community,” said Parrish Brown, an activist with the Black Youth Project 100 Chicago Chapter, in a written statement. “We’re gathering to make sure Mayor (Rahm) Emanuel and the local aldermen do the right thing, or we’ll have to elect people who will.”
The coalition wants an ordinance that would require that 30 percent of all newly constructed housing near the presidential center be set aside as affordable housing. They want a property tax freeze for the longtime homeowners closest to the site and an independent monitor to make sure local residents are hired to work on the project. In addition, they are now calling for a community trust fund and support for the neighborhood schools.
“Property tax freeze” in Chicago? Good luck.
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