After stumbles, Chicago on course to host Obama library

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tags: Chicago, Rahm Emanuel, Obama library



Chicago soon may win the Obama presidential library in spite of itself.

Earlier this month, it was far from a done deal. Although the Windy City was where Barack Obama launched his career and started his family, and where his former chief of staff Rahm Emanuel now serves as mayor, a seemingly mundane land use dispute nearly derailed the proposal to build the library at the University of Chicago. Meanwhile, Columbia University, Obama’s alma mater, stepped into the breach — offering 17 drama-free acres in upper Manhattan.

It took personal intervention by Emanuel, who faces reelection next week, to find a way to end the land dispute and put Chicago — specifically, the city’s South Side — back at the front of the pack. That would locate the library in the neighborhood the president represented in the state Senate, anchor it to the school where he used to teach and put it within walking distance of the home he still owns.






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