"Manufacturers are the backbone of our local economy, and the products they produce and the jobs they provide keep Chicago competitive with the rest of the world. There are signs that our economy is beginning to turnaround, and the expansion of Eastern Accents in Chicago provides hope for a better future," Daley said at another stop on the "Neighborhood Appreciation Tour" he is making before he leaves office in May.
Eastern Accents recently purchased an 89-year-old building at 4227 W. Belmont for $380,000, with a land write down of $120,000. This sale was completed after Eastern Accents had previously rehabbed their primary facility at 4201 W. Belmont and built a 60,000 square foot addition at the south end of the parcel.
This sale completed a campus development in which Eastern Accents now owns and has improved all of the property along Belmont from Tripp Ave., west to the Chicago Milwaukee railroad and south to Barry Ave.
"Keeping manufacturing in our city means getting people back to work and creating new jobs. It is companies like Eastern Accents that will be critical to Chicago's future economic success," Daley said.
In addition to Eastern Accents, other companies have benefited from locating in these two wards.
The city has dedicated $40 million in TIF-generated public infrastructure, schools and business-related improvements throughout the 30th and 31st wards, including:
The City also used TIF funds as Small Business Improvement Funds to help owners of commercial and industrial properties to repair or remodel their facilities for their own business or on behalf of tenants. Approximately 15 small businesses in these wards have received a SBIF grant, including Grota Restaurant, at the 3100 block of North Central, which received a $105,000 grant.
TIF funds also supported TIFWorks, which stimulates business success by funding workforce-training costs for companies located in tax increment financing (TIF) districts.
There are four TIFWorks projects in the 30th ward, including one being funded by the Pulaski Industrial TIF for $78,000 to Aspira, Illinois at 3909 W. Fullerton for Management, Excellence in Youth Service and Safety Training.
To help improve education in these wards, the Chicago Public Schools have opened two new schools, Federico Garcia Lorca Elementary School and North-Grand High School, and made improvements to 14 others.
Daley noted that In addition to schools, that city has carried out its commitment for new and affordable housing.
"Further, there are seven green roofs in these wards that were either required through our Sustainable Development Policy or were supported by our Green Roof Grant program or TIF funding." Daley said.
The City also created a Mobile Food Pantry to serve low-income residents. The City partnered with the Greater Chicago Food Depository to provide two grocery bags of fresh produce and shelf stable products to residents in low income areas and/or areas with limited access to mainstream grocery stores. In 2010, the Mobile Food Pantry was held 77 times at 42 sites and served over 18,200 residents from April through September.
The Chicago Park District has made many improvements to parks and open space throughout the community, including improvement projects at 10 parks, and new playgrounds at 12 parks. The city also rehabbed the field houses at at Kelvyn Park in and Blackhawk Park, and installed artificial turf courts at Kilbourn, Kosciuszko, and Greenbaum parks
During Daley's tenure as Mayor, the North Pulaski Branch of the Chicago Public Library opened, which includes a African American Heritage and Hispanic Heritage collection.
The CTA has undertaken big projects that have benefited these Northwest Side communities over the past 22 years.
Since the inception of the CAPS program in the early 1990s, there has been significant involvement of Residents, Schools, Youth, Businesses, Faith-Based Institutions, and Community Based Organizations in the 30th & 31st Wards. This involvement has led to a strong partnership between the Police, the Community and the City, which has resulted in a decrease in crime and disorder. The result of this partnership is greater quality of life for the residents in these wards.
"These projects represent only the highlights of what we have accomplished in the 30th and 31st Wards,” Mayor Daley said. "And it is easy to identify the reason for improvements: cooperation."
"Thank you for participating in the process. Thank you for your ideas, your input and your time," he said. "Working together we've brought Chicago into the 21st century, and given it a bright future. It's been a joy and an honor to be your Mayor."