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Old September 23rd, 2006, 01:21 AM   #161
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How long are these "sculptures" supposed to last? Honestly, I think it's kind of boring and I actually like the "fairies" or whatever they are called - they're much more graceful and interesting to view.
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Old September 28th, 2006, 03:30 AM   #162
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http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/c...l=chi-news-hed

Kids' museum moving to Grant Park

Tribune staff report
Published September 27, 2006, 1:48 PM CDT

A $15 million gift from Allstate Insurance Cowill allow the Chicago Children's Museum to move from Navy Pier to Grant Park, city and corporate officials announced today.

Allstate also will donate $10 million to the Museum of Science and Industry for related children's educational efforts, city and corporate officials announced this morning at a Navy Pier news conference.

A time frame for the Children's Museum's relocation was not disclosed.

Its new, two-story building will be constructed on land provided by the Chicago Park District at the south end of Daley Bicentennial Plaza in Grant Park, near Monroe Street and Columbus Drive, WGN-Ch. 9 reported.

The facility will occupy [/b]100,000 square feet[b], nearly double the 57,000 square feet of its current quarters. Its new name will be "Chicago Children's Museum at Allstate Place," and its theme will be, "Kids Reinvent Chicago," WGN reported.

"This is a tremendous location for the new museum, within walking distance of Millennium Park, the Cultural Center, the Symphony Center, the Art Institute, the Field Museum of Natural History, Adler Planetarium and the Shedd Aquarium," Mayor Richard Daley said.

"No other city in the world has such a concentration of cultural institutions in one location, and now we'll have one more," Daley said.

Allstate Chief Executive Edward Liddy told WGN, "We wanted to make a statement that made a commitment to the City of Chicago, and we're supporting in a very large way two of Chicago's great institutions," ensuring a linked "science curriculum from kindergarten through high school."

The museum previously had proposed moving to a three-story structure that would replace a fieldhouse at the northern end of Daley Bicentennial Plaza, near Randolph Street. But residents of high-rises north of Grant Park objected, collecting about 2,100 signatures in opposition.

Ald. Burton Natarus (42nd), who sits on the Chicago Plan Commission, said in June that he would not support a museum at the north end of the park because of potential traffic problems.

The Children's Museum attracts 500,000 visitors a year and has outgrown its current location at Navy Pier. Museum officials announced in the fall of 2005 their interest in relocating to Grant Park.
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Old September 29th, 2006, 12:43 AM   #163
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http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/l...l=chi-news-hed

New children's museum site
Navy Pier attraction gets Grant Park spot, but some skeptical

By Noreen S. Ahmed-Ullah

Tribune staff reporter
Published September 28, 2006

The popular Chicago Children's Museum has settled on a new site in Grant Park after ruling out several other options, including a controversial plan for the north end of the park.

Mayor Richard Daley announced Wednesday that the Navy Pier fixture will move to a site northeast of Monroe Street and Columbus Drive currently occupied by an underground parking garage.

He said the move would put the children's museum within walking distance of other downtown attractions, such as Millennium Park and the Shedd Aquarium.

Museum officials expect to build a two-story, 100,000-square-foot building, nearly double the size of the museum's current space. They hope to break ground in 2007.

Beyond that, few details of the latest plan have been fleshed out. The architect chosen for the new museum said that no design or details have been drawn.

Museum officials declined to put a timetable or cost estimate on the project. Wednesday's announcement also included news of a $15 million gift from Allstate Insurance Co. that will help defray a total project cost that could exceed $40 million.

Officials hope to get around restrictive lakefront protection ordinances by keeping parts of the new museum structure underground, building into parts of the parking garage below.

"We need to be respectful of the park," said Chicago Children's Museum President Peter England. "We won't have a high profile."

Last year, the museum had proposed replacing the fieldhouse in the Daley Bicentennial Plaza on the northeast end of the park with a subterranean structure that would house both the children's museum and park functions.

Residents living across from the site on Randolph Street complained, gathering hundreds of signatures against the proposal. Ald. Burton Natarus (42nd), a member of the Chicago Plan Commission, refused to back the plan and proposed an alternate location.

But the new site may provoke more controversy, some warned.

Grant Park Advisory Council President Bob O'Neill said since the announcement Wednesday, he has fielded several negative calls about the proposal. He, too, is skeptical about the plan.

"It's problematic," he said, citing several legal decisions that have kept others from building in Grant Park, dating to the early 20th Century. "It's another building in the park, and before we were getting a one-for-one replacement."

O'Neill also bemoaned the fact that under the plan, the museum will no longer be solving the problems with the leaky fieldhouse.

But Randolph Street residents who led the charge against the museum's early proposal are relieved.

"We accomplished what we wanted," said Kerri Johnson, a mother of three who, like other young parents in the area, was concerned that a museum would attract more traffic to Randolph.

Richard Ward, president of the New East Side Association of Residents, said he too supported the change in location.

The museum has hired a new architect for the site--Krueck & Sexton, architects for Millennium Park's Crown Fountain. The firm is working on the new building for the Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies on Michigan Avenue.

Mark Sexton, principal for the firm, said he is still trying to gather facts from the museum, such as what officials would like on the inside.

In a meeting last month, Sexton tried to create a metaphor for the building by showing an image of a tree with roots spreading out horizontally, a bit above and bit below the surface of the ground.

"This was a visual image on how we thought the museum in the park should work," he said. "It should not be a separate object. It should be integrated into the park."

He hopes to bring some of that integration with nature by using the park's natural slope. Monroe Street is up to 15 feet above ground level near Columbus Drive, and the Daley Bicentennial fieldhouse is approximately another 15 feet higher than that, he said. England said he does not want the new building to be any taller than the proposal for the fieldhouse site, which was largely underground.

It could be a building similar to the Daley Bicentennial fieldhouse with a green roof that people could walk over and a southern glass wall that brings in light, said Ewa Weir, a vice president at Jones Lang LaSalle, a real estate firm working on the project.

Sexton said the fieldhouse does not bring in enough natural light, something he would like to address in the new museum building.

The museum's earlier proposal was estimated at $35 million to $40 million, sources said. Sexton said without a design it's hard to determine what the new building will cost; prices can also be driven up by environmental costs and the desire to build deep below ground.

During Wednesday's news conference, Allstate also announced a $10 million gift to the Museum of Science and Industry for a new exhibit.
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Old October 5th, 2006, 01:00 AM   #164
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http://www.chicagotribune.com/entert...ck=1&cset=true

U. of C. has $100 million idea to raise arts profile

By Blair Kamin and Patrice M. Jones

Tribune staff reporters
Published October 4, 2006

Best known for its star-studded lineup of Nobel Prize-winning economists and scientists, the University of Chicago wants to raise its arts profile--and, some say, shed its nerdy image--by erecting a $100 million creative and performing arts center along the south side of the Midway Plaisance.

To symbolize its ambition and spur fundraising, the university is holding a design competition for the still-unfunded project among five architectural heavyweights, university officials told the Tribune Tuesday. They include Daniel Libeskind, the planner for the reconstruction of New York's World Trade Center, and three winners of the field's most prestigious honor, the Pritzker Architecture Prize.

Citing a litany of star arts alumni--among them novelist Philip Roth, film director Mike Nichols, composer Philip Glass and the writer Susan Sontag--Danielle Allen, dean of the university's humanities division, said: "We'd like to see a building that will raise the profile of the really exciting--but heretofore stealth--arts world on our campus."

Even the university's competitors hailed the idea, saying it would uplift some arts programs that, in their view, don't merit a four-star rave.

"If someone said to me they were interested in being a theater major and asked me what I knew about the U. of C., I would say, `They don't have much,'" said Dominic Missimi, executive director of Northwestern University's American Music Theatre Project.

"In doing this, they may round out their appeal for some students. They have something of a nerdy image," said Robert Baker-White, chair of the theater department at Williams College in Williamstown, Mass.

A nerve center for the arts

U. of C. officials characterized the proposed 100,000-square-foot facility as a nerve center for the arts, saying it would allow students and faculty in disciplines from cinema studies to computer animation to study, create, rehearse and perform under one roof.

Besides Libeskind, whose addition to the Denver Art Museum opens Saturday, the architects in the design competition include the three Pritzker Prize winners--Hans Hollein of Austria, Fumihiko Maki of Japan and Thom Mayne of Santa Monica, Calif.--as well as New York architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien.

The architects, who toured the campus Sept. 15, are to present two models and six illustrated boards next month to a jury composed of the original selection committee for the project and additional representatives from the university community, U. of C. officials said. The jury is to select a winner in January.

Following a well-worn path for architecture competitions, the university hopes this one will jump-start fundraising.

"We are working hard on securing a naming gift," Allen said, adding that university officials have started "several open conversations" with potential donors. Asked if the prospective givers include Chicago's billionaire Pritzker family, sponsors of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, she said: "No comment."

A family member, Thomas J. Pritzker, is on the university's board of trustees.

University officials said that a key fundraising threshold--25 percent of the total project cost--must be crossed before the U. of C. could hire an architect. A little more than $1 million has been raised, they said, leaving the project about $24 million short of that threshold.

But Tom Wick, the university's senior director of development, said the university planned to run the design competition at the same time it undertook "the quiet phase" of the fundraising campaign. The idea, he said, is to cultivate "the major donors so that we will be able to close the major gifts in the next few months to meet that threshold."

Meant to house a 350-seat multipurpose performance hall and three black-box theaters, as well as music practice rooms and a recording studio, the art center would be used primarily by students and faculty, adding to rather than replacing the university's Smart Museum of Art and the university-associated Court Theatre.

University officials envision the arts center and a 900-bed dorm that is scheduled to be completed in 2008 at 61st Street and Ellis Avenue as a hub of student life on the southern end of the campus, much as the new Ratner Athletics Center and a neighboring dorm have created a hub on the campus' north end.

Hyde Park role envisioned

The center would provide an amenity not only for campus residents but also for residents of the surrounding Hyde Park neighborhood. "The building should be a gem that the city, and the South Side should be proud of," Allen said.

The center would rise at the western edge of the Midway, the greensward that joins Jackson Park on the east with Washington Park on the west. It would occupy the same block as--and likely be connected to--a landmarked, L-shaped cluster of historic buildings known as the Midway Studios.

The studios, which consist of a barn and a Queen Anne-style three-story home, were the home and studio of sculptor Lorado Taft, whose "Fountain of Time" monument punctuates the Midway's western end. Along with later additions, the studios are the home of the university's department of visual arts.

Other notable modern designs along the Midway are the university's School of Social Service Administration, a black, steel-and-glass box designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and the Laird Bell Law Quadrangle, a modern complex designed by Eero Saarinen that evokes the university's historic quads.

Other campuses have arts centers, but U. of C. officials envision a unique variation on this theme, a place where artists can collaborate with people from different disciplines.
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Old October 12th, 2006, 06:53 AM   #165
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Grant Park Advisory Council public meeting

Chicago Children's Museum's proposed, two-story new building for Grant Park

Monday, October 16, 2006 - 6:30 p.m. Daley Bicentennial Plaza
- 337 E. Randolph just east of Columbus Drive.

The Chicago Children's Museum has proposed building a two-story building on the northeast corner of Monroe Street and Columbus Drive in Grant Park. This would be diagonally across from the new Modern Wing of the Art Institute of Chicago currently under construction. We need to hear from you at this first, public meeting on the proposed building for Grant Park.

Thank you very much for your interest and participation.

Phone: 312-829-8015

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Old October 12th, 2006, 10:28 PM   #166
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From Crains:

Oct. 12, 2006
By Lorene Yue

Art Institute gets $19-million donation


(Crain’s) — Chicago hedge fund billionaire Kenneth Griffin and his wife are giving $19 million to help build a new Art Institute wing, one of the largest private donations ever made to the museum.

The gift, announced Wednesday by Mr. Griffin and his wife, Anne Dias Griffin, will be used to fund the $350-million Modern Art wing, scheduled to open in 2009.

The 264,000-square-foot wing will house the museum’s modern, contemporary and architecture and design collections and will feature a two-story central court that will be named the “Kenneth and Anne Griffin Court.”

Mr. Griffin, 38, is a trustee for the Art Institute and president and founder of Citadel Investment Group. He declined to comment beyond remarks in an Art Institute press release.

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“Anne and I are delighted to be able to help the Art Institute build the Modern Wing, a freestanding addition to the museum campus that we believe will be one of the world’s great museum buildings,” he said in the statement. “We visited the Art Institute on one of our first dates. For us, our relationship with this great, encyclopedic museum can be described as ‘love at first sight.’”

Ms. Griffin is managing partner and founder of Aragon Global Management, also a Chicago-based hedge fund.

Together, the couple has emerged as prominent players in Chicago’s art community, lending pieces from their growing collection to the Art Institute and making monetary donations.


"Green Dancer," Edgar Degas
The Griffins recently bought “False Start” by postwar painter Jasper Johns from media mogul David Geffen for what the New York Times reported was $80 million.

That painting will be loaned to the Art Institute for its “Jasper Johns: Gray” exhibition, which opens Nov. 4, 2007, at the Art Institute. The exhibition also will be shown at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. The Griffins also donated $500,000 to support the exhibition.

Other works the couple have recently acquired include “Curtain, Jug, and Fruit Bowl” and “Self-Portrait” from 1895 by Paul Cezanne, “Little Dancer, Aged Fourteen” and “Green Dancer” by Edgar Degas and “Water Lilies” of 1905 by Claude Monet.

Mr. Griffin ranked 512th on Forbes magazine’s 2006 list of richest people in the world. He ranks 207th among the 400 richest Americans, according to Forbes magazine
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Old October 13th, 2006, 05:26 AM   #167
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^ Chicago needs more of these guys.
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Old October 13th, 2006, 05:43 AM   #168
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanSophist View Post
^ Chicago needs more of these guys.
^ He's under 40 and is Chicago's newest billionaire.

Actually, it's either him or Morningstar's Joe Mansueto. Can't remember which came first..
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Old October 16th, 2006, 06:15 PM   #169
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South Grant Park Sculpture Park Update







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Old October 16th, 2006, 07:23 PM   #170
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..

Last edited by Loopy; June 20th, 2010 at 04:59 AM.
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Old October 16th, 2006, 08:12 PM   #171
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I'm going to withhold judgment on this one until they finish the site. My hope is that there is more done to the site than just cement pads for these things to stand on: benches, landscaping, and berms. Do you just come upon them or is there a point of entry? How are they lit?

It’s hard to get a sense of the impact that 106 9 foot sculptures will have. This isn’t an instillation that you judge on the individual piece, but in the entirety of the composition.

I have to agree with Loopy, there is a huge spectrum of public art that goes well beyond the Disney feel of Millennium. Like most public art in Chicago over the last 30 years including millennium there is bound to be public outcry. Face it most people to "get it" whatever the work is. But take heart Chicago - We have one of the most impressive collections of public outdoor art in the world.

The South Loop and Museum Park is going to have find a way to embrace this installation as our own!
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Old October 22nd, 2006, 12:20 AM   #172
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Stalled museum seeks a name
For $8 mil., donor can be immortalized on facade

By Gregory Meyer


Organizers of a planned broadcast museum in River North are reaching out to big donors, and offering naming rights, to save the troubled project.

Construction stopped on the building at State and Kinzie streets five months ago after the contractor said it was due millions. Now the Museum of Broadcast Communications is trying to find someone to pay $8 million to be immortalized on its facade, says Bruce DuMont, the museum's founder and CEO.

The museum's board approved the naming initiative in April as Pepper Construction Co. halted work. In August, Pepper filed a lien for $4.5 million in unpaid bills.

Two candidates have already turned the museum down, but more are being courted, Mr. DuMont says.

Overtures were made to Oprah Winfrey, whose foundation has already kicked in $250,000, he says. A spokeswoman for Ms. Winfrey says, "She has no plans to make any additional contributions to the museum."

After moving out of the Chicago Cultural Center in December 2003, the museum broke ground on the 70,000-square-foot building. Budgeted at $20 million, the price has ballooned to $33 million.

Mr. DuMont, a local radio and TV host, says he's raised $14.5 million from private donations but needs more to secure remaining financing from the state and private contributors.

SETTING THE PRICE

Naming rights is a common fund-raising tool for non-profit organizations, but determining a price can be tricky. Asking too much could repel potential donors.

But, "you don't want to give the name away," says Don Fellows, president and CEO of Marts & Lundy Inc., a consultant to non-profits. "You want to protect it, make sure the value is appropriate."

Mr. DuMont insists the price is right. "You can have your name on this institution in perpetuity for $8 million. So, you'll be up there with Shedd and Adler and Field. We're looking for someone of vision," he says.
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Old October 22nd, 2006, 04:03 AM   #173
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^I figured...I have emailed them five or six times now to see why they had stopped construction with no response...hopefully something will happen, it sure is an unfinished eyesore right now. Can't we just drape an ad over it for now?!http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=401933

Last edited by danthediscoman; October 22nd, 2006 at 06:21 AM. Reason: Because I don't think before I type and then I have to go back and change things I regret typing...like this reason.
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Old October 27th, 2006, 06:53 PM   #174
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South Grant Park Sculptures Up


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Old October 28th, 2006, 10:22 AM   #175
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No to the scrap metal... I hope and predict that this installation will be gone in 5-10 years, a victim of sabotage or "safety concerns".

It's just an opinion, and I speak only because this "art" is being inflicted on Chicago by my fellow country-woman. Why does she punish America like this? Let's put this ugly thing in Germany instead... they deserve it more.

I know, the point is that it should be ugly, and here I really have a fundamental disagreement with people who think that public space should educate or "shock." No, it should invite, it should edify. Public space is generally bad enough in America as it is, we don't have to make it worse. No strip malls, no surface parking, and no scrap metal sculpture.

Abakanowicz is quoted as saying in the above article: "I'm not making a decoration... I'm making a statement, a statement about nature and our consciousness." I think this is just so wrong. Anything can be a "statement." The dilapidated Metra station at Roosevelt is also a "statement", is it not? So is the vacant response of the Columbian at street level on the corner of Roosevelt and Michigan. And so on...

BTW, any new OMP pics, Chicagotom??? Thanks!
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Old October 28th, 2006, 08:35 PM   #176
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Jaroslaw, I respect your opinion and your eye for the asthetic. Never the less, I have to disagree with you on this one. It's still too early to tell. With the fencing around it your not able to get any long view. I have looked at it from the Metra bridge and through the fencing and I can't wait for the grand opening on November 16th. There is a good post SSP with some very good close ups from the Trib.

I think this will turn out to be another internationally recognized addition to Chicago's World Class outdoor sclupture Collection.

Also I updated OMP1




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Old October 31st, 2006, 12:01 PM   #177
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A new museum for Chicago

City could land floating museum
Non-profit group hopes to turn Coast Guard vessel into a riverfront attraction

By William Mullen
Tribune staff reporter
Published October 30, 2006


Long a welcome sight to mariners experiencing trouble on Lake Michigan, the recently retired U.S. Coast Guard cutter Acacia should soon be familiar to strollers and tourists along the banks of the Chicago River.

The decommissioned 180-foot icebreaker and buoy tender was donated to the state of Illinois, which is working with Chicago and the non-profit, locally based American Academy of Industry to make it into a riverfront museum dedicated to the city's rich maritime history.

Moored temporarily at Burns Harbor in Indiana, the 62-year-old Acacia is still outfitted with almost all its working gear--minus machine guns and ammunition.

"The Coast Guard sailed it in here, tied off and left it with us with the engine still running and food in the fridge," academy president Dan Hecker said as he showed off the vessel on a recent Sunday afternoon after the deal was announced.

The boat is to be shifted soon to a Chicago location for the winter. Both the city and the academy would like to have the ship open as a museum by next summer, Hecker said.

Hecker, 46, said he and his brother, Marty, 40, founded the academy in 1995 with the goal of turning a vessel into a maritime museum. Initially, the group boasted more than 200 members. But after years of failed attempts to find a ship, the active number dwindled to "maybe a dozen," he said.

"I was beginning to give the idea up when I got a call last April from a state official asking me if we would be interested in the Acacia," Dan Hecker said.

Plans to sell the ship to an African nation apparently had fallen through, and Coast Guard officials, reviewing their options, pulled a letter from the academy from their files. By law, the Coast Guard could not convey ownership to the academy but arranged to do it through state officials.

City sees benefits

City officials see the Acacia as an asset in their efforts to spruce up the Chicago River's image and are looking at several mooring spots, said Brian Steele, spokesman for the Transportation Department.

Ideally, he said, the ship would go along the river's main branch, perhaps between Clark and Dearborn.

"The concept of the ship becoming a maritime museum is a very appealing one," Steele said. "There are myriad issues that have to be settled in choosing a site for it, including easy public accessibility, making sure the ship does not disturb normal river navigation and incorporating it with city plans for a river walk."

Plans are for much of the ship to be maintained as a time capsule, showing how it worked up to the time of its retirement.

"The initial primary artifact for the museum is the Acacia itself," said Marty Hecker, a Coast Guard naval architect in Maryland. "It is an exceptional ship."
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Old November 1st, 2006, 01:14 AM   #178
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I disagree here. There are stretches of the North Branch (around Kinzie) and of the South Branch (between Van Buren and Roosevelt) that would be perfect for a ship like this. Why the Main Branch?
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Old November 2nd, 2006, 01:37 AM   #179
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http://newsroom.eworldwire.com/view_...e.php?id=15852

Landmark Defender Building Could Be Chicago Gospel Museum

Nov. 1, 2006

International Gospel enthusiasts have come up with a plan to preserve a historical Chicago landmark while attracting a tourist base to the area.

The Sun-Times described in vivid detail in an article entitled "Sounding the alarm for Chicago landmarks," the deep concern of Preservationists about the former Chicago Defender headquarters. Reporter Kevin Nance noted, "Since the Defender's departure in January, the building has been vacant and subject to vandalism. Windows have been broken out, and copper gutters and downspouts have been removed for salvage value." In addition, the article pointed out the possibility of further damage from Chicago's freezing winter.

With buyers evaluating the building for purchase discouraged primarily by its location in the Motor Row Landmark District - along with facing difficulties with local authorities in subjecting the facility to any changes, the solution is seems to be pointing to the City of Chicago. By acquiring the building, restoring and converting it into an International Gospel Music Museum, Chicago stands to create the greatest archives of the cultural impact gospel music made in America.

Widespread misconceptions abound about the origin of gospel music - which was, in fact, influenced by the Negro spirituals and Christian hymns but is an art form in itself originating from and spread from Chicago by Thomas A. Dorsey, the Roberta Martin Singers, Salllie Martin, Mahalia Jackson, the Caravans, Soul Stirrers, Norfleet Brothers, James Cleveland and Albertina Walker. A January 2006 fire destroyed the historic and beautiful Pilgrim Baptist Church on South Michigan Avenue, and much of the original and irreplaceable Thomas Dorsey / Pilgrim Baptist Church memorabilia.

Additional 1950's development of Lake Meadows, Prairie Shores, Dan Ryan Expressway and later changes have left only a few of the classic and significant buildings in Bronzeville intact - the Defender building is by far the most unique. Built in 1936 by the Illinois auto dealers on Michigan Avenue's Auto Row, and serving as the 50-year home of the Chicago Defender newspaper, this building has strong cultural and architectural appeal. It would be a fitting tribute to this glorious music genre to transform the former Chicago Defender headquarters into an international tourist attraction in the historic Bronzeville area, since Gospel music is popular worldwide.

With an ideal location - near the Loop and McCormick Place - acquisition of the building by The City of Chicago would solve the immediate problems associated with vandalism, preserve it for future years and add to Chicago's diverse cultural attractions.

Persons interested in forming a committee to study and present a proposal to the City of Chicago to save and preserve the former Chicago Defender Headquarters are invited to join Gospel Music Capitol of the World Productions and Toyota on Western.
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Old November 2nd, 2006, 02:09 AM   #180
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^ That's a great idea
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