Friday, April 22, 2011


On April 4, the 43rd anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., officials of Lawndale Christian Development Corporation gathered with elected officials and West Side civic leaders for the ribbon-cutting ceremony opening the Dr. King Legacy Apartments at 1550 South Hamlin Avenue, on the site where Dr. King and his family lived in 1966 during his protests against segregated housing in Chicago. The new complex contains 45 units of affordable housing and commercial space on the street level. The original building was destroyed during the riots that were sparked by Dr. King’s murder.
    The City of Chicago is a partner in the development with Lawndale Christian Development Corporation through $6.5 million in loans and tax credits. The Dr. King Legacy Apartment units are energy-efficient. Ten units are set aside for Chicago Housing Development voucher holders and the development also includes green space and a number of sustainable features, including a partial green roof and the use of recycled materials in construction.
    The apartments are located within the new 4-acre Martin Luther King Historic District, part of a larger effort attracting affordable housing and commercial development to North Lawndale. Ultimately, the district will include a new campus park, a new library, a job-training center, and the Martin Luther King Fair Housing Museum.
    “It is developments like these that help our neighborhoods grow stronger and demonstrate how working together we can collectively provide affordable housing and economic opportunities citywide,” declares Mayor Richard M. Daley. He said that one of the things he is proudest of as Mayor is the City’s long-standing commitment to affordable housing.
    “Chicago has made much progress in many areas since Dr. King lived in this neighborhood,” the Mayor said, “although much remains to be done. But, our schools are better. Our neighborhoods are stronger. And we have moved past the years when racial politics and rhetoric divided our city.”

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