Sunday, December 14, 2008

Promises, Promises

What she promised:

In 1992, Ald. Shiller wanted to give the Tribune Company a little gift: a parking lot along the east wall of Graceland cemetery. The neighbors indicated that they wanted a park there, rather than provide a then-thriving corporation with city land for out-of-area fans to put their cars.

Ald. Shiller said there would be a "compromise," promising: "The Cubs get to use the lot for parking 20 percent of the year. During the rest of the year, the area will have four half-court basketball courts, soccer fields, and, in the winter, an ice skating rink."

Last June, we went back to check out the cough basketball courts and soccer fields. You can see what we found by clicking here. So last week, when the city's streets were sheets of ice and the wind chill was below zero, we thought we'd go back over to see how those skating rinks were working out.

What she delivered:

Hasn't it become obvious by now that Ald. Shiller will promise anything to get her campaign donors' pet projects pushed through, and she'll deliver absolutely nothing that she promised to the community's residents in exchange?

Think of the Wilson Yard movie theaters and mixed-income housing. Think about the Wilson Yard "Crate & Barrel" store. Think of the architects' drawings that showed Aldi customers entering the store from the street, rather than building a bass-ackward store. Think of the movie theatres at Lawrence & Winthrop. Think of the never-seen Target "letter of intent" that she's said has been in her possession for years. Think of the soccer fields. The skating rink. The four half-court basketball courts.

In the 46th Ward, it seems promises don't translate into much reality.


  1. "In 1992, Ald. Shiller wanted to give the Tribune Company a little gift"

    Shiller may not have kept her end of the bargain, but ask yourself what was the "bleepin" golden thing this parking lot was worth to the Trib. Have they been holding up their end of the bargain?

    It does seem odd that the Trib is a black hole when it comes to news about Uptown that paints Helen in a bad light. Even their token paragraph about the Wilson Yard lawsuit (Citizen group sues the city of Chicago) was lacking the word "TIF."

    Of course, this could just be lazy reporting.......or could it....hmmmm

  2. There are some basketball hoops up there. No nets though.

  3. I guess we should be relieved, that she didn't try to slip in some narrow, hi-rise no-income housing here?

  4. Here's your opportunity to skate, thanks to Ald. Tom Tunney:

    Ice Skating in the 44th Ward