KOCO is a founding member of the Obama CBA Coalition to create a community benefits agreement (CBA) between the Obama Foundation, the University of Chicago, the City of Chicago, and the community. This will be in the form of a city ordinance (similar to what was created for Chicago’s 2016 Olympic Summer Games bid). KOCO and the Coalition have also registered as ‘concerned parties’ within the federal review process for the Obama Presidential Center (OPC). Because of the historic designation of Jackson Park, and the massive proposed changes that will come with the construction of the OPC, federal approval is required before construction can legally begin. The Coalition is working to ensure there is consideration given to the potential gentrification and displacement that can result from this development. Updates can also be found at: obamacba.org.
The CBA was developed through two years of engaging hundreds of community residents to hear their concerns and recommendations. Six areas of concern were identified: economic development, education, employment, housing, sustainability, and transportation. Recommendations include: 30% set-aside of affordable housing for new and rehab construction, freeze property taxes for long-time residents, local hiring for all jobs connected to the OPC, creation of Black business corridors, etc. The full CBA can be found here: http://www.obamacba.org/ordinance.html.