As one of the closest Bed and Breakfasts to both the Obama Library and the George Lucas Museum, Welcome Inn Manor wanted to take a moment to weigh in on the matter.
As of the past few months, this has been a hotly debated issue from residents pro and con on the matter.
Since Angie and I are lifelong Chicagoans, we also have our own views.
First, let’s discuss the Lucas Museum now in the planning phases. The museum (pictured above) has one of the most unusual designs for a building in Chicago. The museum is a showcase of storytelling images that include everything from comics and children’s books to digital art and film. Additionally, Lucas is donating his personal art and Star Wars collection to the museum. The estimated worth of the collection is $600 million.
While the museum seems out of this galaxy amazing (pardon the pun), the challenge is that Mayor Rahm Emmanuel gifted 17 acres of lakefront property near McCormick Place for the future spot.
However, the non-profit group Friends of the Parks stated that this project is a violation of the Lakefront Protection Ordinance and the 1973 Lakefront Plan of Chicago prohibiting “further private development” east of Lake Shore Drive. Both sides are contesting whether the museum violates this, and its affects on the city of Chicago lake shore.
Lucas stated publicly a few months ago that if this deal does not go through, then he will consider the offer city of Los Angeles to move the museum there.
The Obama Library is another story. Barrack Obama has clear ties to the south side of Chicago. This is where he taught, began as an activist, and started his political career. Anywhere other than Chicago, and he will have problems with angry Chicago residents.
The city aldermen recently approved a transfer of 20 acres from either Jackson or Washington Park to be used for the library. This was after Mayor Emmanuel approved the potential transfer if the president decides to move the library to Chicago.
That being said, it is still not a done deal. The commission for the library is still taking bids from groups in Hawaii, where the president was born; as well as in New York.
Plus, recent opposition in the city about the specific location has arisen from a number of sources who do not want to use parkland to build the library.
Conversely, Illinois officials are dedicated to doing whatever is in their power to keep the library in-state. This will probably not go through in the State of Illinois, but Speaker Madigan proposed last year to even give $100 Million towards building the library.
While the spot of the future presidential library is still in the early phases, it should be interesting to see what happens. Personally, we would welcome having the Obama Library so close to Welcome Inn Manor. Another way, we can show off our great city.
We want to know your thoughts? Do you like having the Lucas museum here in Chicago? What about the Obama Library? Would it affect your decision to visit the city?