Acquisition of Land for Two New Schools Approved by City Council

Mayors Press Office, 312-744-3334 Kevin Smith, Public Building Commission, (312) 744-9277

The Chicago City Council today approved a pair of resolutions, introduced last month by Mayor Richard M. Daley, which will allow the Public Building Commission of Chicago to acquire land on which a new high school and a new elementary school will be built.

With the City Council’s action, the PBC can begin the process of purchasing property in the Back of the Yards neighborhood for a new high school to be built near 47th Street and Hoyne Avenue and a new elementary school to be constructed at 38th Street and St. Louis Avenue. The new schools will be part of Mayor Daley’s “Modern Schools Across Chicago” initiative.

“The strength of any school is found in the dedication of the faculty and in the pride of the students, and both are strengthened by a structure that encourages both the faculty and the students to aspire to great things,” said Mayor Daley. “These two new schools will feature a modern, environmentally friendly design that will serve the Back of the Yards community for many years to come.”

Preliminary plans for the high school call for use of the Chicago Public Schools’ prototype design, a 200,000 square-foot structure suitable for 1,200 students. The new school would feature a gymnasium/auditorium as well as music, art and library facilities while satisfying multiple requirements for LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification.

At the new elementary school, meanwhile, preliminary plans follow a prototype design calling for a 105,000 square-foot building with various amenities. It also would satisfy multiple LEED certification requirements.

Tentative schedules call for the new elementary school to be ready in fall of 2010, while the new high school could to be ready in the fall of 2011.

The Public Building Commission of Chicago, formed in 1956 by then Mayor Richard J. Daley, oversees the building of public facilities for such clients as the City of Chicago, the Chicago Park District, the Chicago Public Library, the Chicago Public Schools and the City Colleges of Chicago.