On Tuesday November 27th, 2012, Skidmore Owings and Merrill convened a meeting with community stakeholders on adaptive re-use strategies for the Michael Reese Hospital site at West Point Baptist church, 3566 South Cottage Grove.
The second of three townhall styled stakeholder engagement and consultative meetings, the meeting featured presentations from developers, community leaders and stakeholder groups. At issue was the proper use and adaptation of the 37 acre tract of land that previously housed the historic Michael Reese Hospital.
Positioned between the government & financial sector of the South Loop and the intellectual, cultural and civic engagement centers of the historic neighborhoods of Bronzeville and Hyde Park, the site should serve as a bridge and springboard for Chicago's efforts to help the state of Illinois and the nation win the future.
In keeping with Chicago's Cultural Plan and the Mayor's RFP, re-development and
adaptive use of the former Michael Reese site should conform to the following
guidelines. The redevelopment must create “high-quality, 21st Century” jobs; attract established companies and foster creation of new companies in emerging business sectors; attract individual and institutional investors to support those
companies and foster redevelopment of the nearby Bronzeville and South Loop
communities.’ Any plan must “balance financial risk and return, using private and public investors while at the same time generating a positive return [direct and indirect] to the city on its initial investment.” While “market conditions will
dictate what shape” the development ultimately takes, any Project should be integrated with Chicago’s Cultural Plan and thus should highlight the following themes:
* A Focus on Families and Neighborhoods
* Capacity Growth of Multiple Sectors
* Global Positioning through an international trade and commerce center
* Profound Civic Impact
* Broad commitment to Sustainability, Projects of Scale and Innovation to help Chicago, Illinois and the nation win the Future.
* Retain lifelong residents and attract professionals.
* Reinvigorate education and training, job creation and entrepreneurship for all
Chicago and create opportunities for lifelong learning.
* Honor authentic Chicago culture in daily life.
* Facilitate neighborhood planning of cultural and commercial activity.
* Strengthen capacity of service providers and small business owners at critical stages of growth.
* Optimize city policies and regulation so initiatives thrive.
* Promote a culture of innovation as a fundamental driver of prosperity to continually strengthen our --quality of life.
* Make Chicago a global cultural and commercial destination.
* Place a priority on education, families, culture and innovation - what we do and how we work together to win the future.
* Integrate innovation into civic life - across public, nonprofit, and private sectors.