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I don't even want to think about it. One local office-and-gift store is marking down mugs, soft children's puzzles, and "'Anatomically Correct' dinosaurs."

How to have a full church, according to the Chicago-based US. Parish newsletter (August 1988): remove the extra pews! "And if the pews are old but beautiful, you can sell them to people who want them for their homes. Go to your local antique store. You'll bust a rivet when you see what old pews are selling for."

Economics 101. "During an April session of a local talk show, Susie Myers, a resident of South Armour Square who stands to be displaced by the proposed Sox stadium, made her plea to save her neighborhood. In response, commentator Bruce DuMont remarked that 'The White Sox contribute a lot more to the city's economy than the Susie Myers [sic] do.'

"DuMont is dead wrong," writes Mary O'Connell in The Neighborhood Works (August/September 1988). "Susie Myers and her husband have worked all their lives. They own a home. They shop at grocery stores, paint stores, hardware stores, downtown department stores. They pay taxes that keep the city and state governments working. They . . . don't just contribute to the city's economy: they are the basis on which the whole economy is built. Drive away the Susie Myers of this city, and there will be no taxes to build stadiums for any sports teams--and no bodies to sit in the seats."

"There is some evidence that CHA has a policy of emptying buildings in areas where development is taking place," reports the Chicago Urban League in Chicago's Public Housing Crisis: Causes and Solutions. At a time when demand for low-cost housing is high, the vacancy rate in four CHA high rises increased substantially between 1986 and 1987. CUL's Robert Slayton writes, "These locations all had at least one thing in common, namely, they were all under pressure by developers: Abbott Homes [up from 16 percent vacant in 1986 to 36 percent in 1987], part of ABLA, is in the gentrifying area around the University of Ilinois-Chicago campus; Cabrini Extension [up from 27 to 39 percent] is similarly in the fast-developing River North section; and Henry Horner Homes [from 7 to 17 percent] and Henry Horner Extension [from 35 to 44 percent] are both close to the site for the proposed Near West Side stadium. This pattern suggests that the Chicago Housing Authority may be consciously clearing out buildings in areas where land prices are rapidly rising or other pressures exist."

"Nowhere else has such significant authority been given to parents, citizens, and educators at the school level," says Dr. Donald Moore, executive director of Designs for Change, commenting on the Chicago school reform bill. "When it is carried out [following July 1, 1989], this reform legislation will put the school system that has rightly been called the nation's worst in a position of national leadership in carrying out fundamental school improvement."

The two largest Hispanic-owned businesses in the state--according to a Hispanic Business survey reported in the Chicago Reporter (July 1988)--are Travelmasters, Inc. of Arlington Heights and Century 21 Agmont Real Estate, Inc., of Chicago.

"The rebuilding of Chicago's neighborhoods requires leadership," writes Patrick Barry in Chicago Enterprise (July 1988). "The Loop has been rebuilt over the past 30 years thanks to a few dozen individuals who focused their energies on the rebirth of a dying central district. That job is nearly finished. Now the tougher job of whole-city redevelopment must be tackled. What's missing are a few visionaries to get bureaucrats, neighborhood activists and developers to work together."

What's that rumbling we hear in the near western suburbs over the Forest Preserve District's deal with the Metropolitan Sanitary District? MSD contractors will place more than two million cubic yards of Deep Tunnel limestone borings on the wide-open spaces of the Miller Meadow forest preserve just west of Forest Park, between Roosevelt and Cermak. The FPD says it will use the rock to build two hills on the formerly flat ground--unless it decides to sell the rock instead. Citizens to Save Miller Meadow doesn't like being surprised and has taken out full-page ads in 12 suburban newspapers "imploring" FPD superintendent Arthur Janura to abandon the plan and repair the damage. What a world--you just can't dig a tunnel in peace anymore.

If a business incubator succeeds, it loses, according to George Kalidonis in Economic Development News (June 1988). "As tenant firms become successful and grow, they leave the facility. In other words, the success of the incubator operator works against the operator's profit interests." Although incubators are designed to ease the birth of profitable businesses, Kalidonis says, the incubators themselves are usually better run by government or other not-for-profit organizations.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): illustration/Carl Kock.

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