The Chicago Clean Energy Project


The remnants of the former LTV metallurigal coking plant still remain on the site.

The remnants of the former LTV metallurigal coking plant still remain on the site.

It’s easy to see how a modern facility the size and scope of what is being proposed by Chicago Clean Energy would impact the southeast side of Chicago. What one finds today in much of the former industrial area is environmental devastation brought on by a century of unregulated industry and the neglect and abandonment that followed. To envision the fruition of this new project is nothing less than envisioning a rebirth of Chicago itself. Not the Chicago that exists for the few and rich found to the north, but the Chicago that once existed for hardworking SouthSiders who found contentment in a steady job and who kept their savings in shoeboxes under their bed.

While years still remain before hammer meets steel on this project, already it has broken ground on bringing hope to the people in the area. After decades of neglect, glimmers of promise are found in conversations had with the few storeowners remaining in the neighborhood, and government is investing millions in infrastructure improvements to roads and streets. Clearly it seems, something is in the air and you can feel the excitement building as hope returns to an area too long neglected by those in power.

While it hasn’t garnered a public outpouring of interest from the City’s movers and shakers, the Chicago Clean Energy project is far more important than hosting Olympic games or developing another downtown park. This project and where it will reside hits directly at the heart of what this city was intended to be all about. It reopens the long-closed doors that let our fathers and grandfathers lay down roots in this town: a shot at a decent life; opportunity for newcomers; hope for the forgotten.

Chicago needs this “big shoulder” project and through the grace of God and the wisdom of our political leaders, we will see it through.

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Posted by on Apr 2nd, 2012 and filed under Feature Story. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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