Gazette Chicago 04 07 2017 E Edition Page 1

By Eva Hofmann Some neighborhood organizations in the West Loop are working on new initiatives to foster economic development and a safer environ- ment for residents and visitors. The West Central Association (WCA), along with the Metropolitan Planning Council, recently unveiled results of a study on land use and parking, which will serve as a guide for WCA's Madison Street Initiative and other ways to promote growth in the neighborhood. WCA is developing strategies around the study and will provide details on a comprehensive plan An independent community newspaper since 1983. Near West/Tri-Taylor University Village West Loop South Loop West Haven Bridgeport/Armour Square Chinatown Bronzeville East Pilsen Heart of Chicago April 7, 2017 FREE Vol. 34, No. 12 Neighborhood groups work on improvements for West Loop's residents and businesses Continued on page 12 INSIDE Other highlights: Local community says to keep Arrigo Park passive. See page 18. Sophia King wins 4th Ward special election. See page 19. Local churches offer Holy Week and Easter services. See page 38. Combine learning and fun at area's summer camps. See page 30. Children's Hospital UI Health names Van Voorhees new head. See page 8. New senior housing development in planning stages for Chinatown Graphic courtesy of Chicago Department of Transportation The City recently announced the launch of the Fulton Market Streetscape Project, a modernization effort designed to accommodate outdoor markets and make the neighborhood more pedestrian friendly. Near West Side marijuana dispensary open for business By Igor Studenkov The Chinese Consolidated Benevo- lent Association of Chicago (CCBA), one of the oldest Chinese-American advocacy organizations in the city, will demolish the Chinese Commu- nity Center at 250 W. 22nd Pl. and build an eight-story building in its place. The first two floors will house the organization's offices and com- munity center programs and activi- ties. In a major change from the cur- rent building, the six upper floors will feature a senior housing devel- opment with 92 apartments. Ac- cording to CCBA documents sub- mitted to the City of Chicago, of- ficials expect to start construction this summer and complete the project by December 2019. The CCBA is a nationwide Chi- nese-American organization that assists the Chinese-American com- munity. Its Chicago branch began in the 1880s. In 1958, it raised funds to build the current Chinese Com- munity Center, where it remains to this day. CCBA president Yman Vien on May 18, 2016, submitted an ap- plication to build an eight-story building on the community cen- ter's current lot and the surround- ing lots stretching from 246 to 262 W. 22nd Pl. Because the project would be too wide and too tall to comply with the lot's current RT4 zoning, which allows single fam- ily houses, two-flats, townhouses, and low-density multi-unit struc- tures, she filed to change the zon- ing to B3-5, which covers shopping Continued on page 6 By Jake Ekdahl The medical marijuana dispensary originally planned for the Fulton Market area has opened instead on the Near West Side. The Herbal Care Center (THC for short) is located at 1301 S. Western Ave. near the Illi- nois Medical District. The site for- merly held a Firestone Auto Care shop. Owner Perry Mandera, a truck- ing executive, also owns the Cardi- nal Fitness gym and VIP's Gentle- men's Club. Marijuana has been legal for medical purchase in Illinois since November 2016, but dispensaries have only recently begun to open. "We really wanted to be a well- ness shop, and not just a canna- bis dispensary," said Hunter Sut- terfield, who manages The Herbal Care Center. Sutterfield previously managed the Harvest of Tempe dispensary in Arizona. Sutterfield was optimistic about The Herbal Care Center's location, with so many healthcare facilities nearby. Ald. Walter Burnett Jr., in whose 27th Ward Mandera originally hoped to open the dispensary, op- posed a medical marijuana dis- pensary in the Fulton Market area because the West Loop commu- nity did not want it there. Sutterfield said the company saw no such resistance in its new location. "Things are going great," he noted. "The community reacted very well, very welcoming," Ald. Jason Ervin (28th Ward) has said he has no objection to The Continued on page 17 St. Therese School principal earns Golden Apple award. See page 14.

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