CHICAGO – Alderman Milly Santiago (31st Ward) is pleased to announce the investment of almost $2 million allocated from TIF funds for a renovation project at Kosciuszko Park located in West Logan Square. The park has been in need of support for significant improvements. Currently, the baseball fields flood, the soccer court needs new turf, and the playground needs an update and spray feature so kids can cool off in summer. A capital needs assessment determined the park needs ADA compliant benches and tables and new doors and window guards in the pool building, as well. The outdoor basketball court has not had hoops or been used in years and will be converted to an outdoor exercise station.
Alderman Santiago worked with the Mayor’s Office, the Department of Planning and Development, and the Chicago Park District on this project.
“It’s a great day for our Ward, Kosciuszko Park is going to get some much needed renovations! People have concerns about TIFs taking money from public facilities,” said Alderman Santiago. “But this project is a clear testament of the use of TIF fund investments in our communities, especially for public parks. I’m pleased with the support of the Mayor’s office and DPD in supporting my vision and commitment to improve the quality of life for 31st Ward residents.”
“At the Chicago Park District, our number one priority is to make parks and programming accessible to individuals of all ages and abilities. We are pleased to have this opportunity to renovate an already vibrant park and to upgrade the park features that our residents use to stay engaged and active,” said Chicago Park District General Superintendent Michael Kelly.
In addition to the renovations, Kosciuszko Park will be one of the few parks on the Northwest side to receive a Dog-Friendly Area. This will add safety and security - but will not come from TIF funds. The money was earmarked through a Participatory Budgeting process instituted by Alderman Santiago, and driven by community members and volunteers.
Alderman Santiago has also secured additional TIF funding for the Portage-Cragin Library and Foreman College and Career Prep, and looks forward to announcing those projects soon. She remains committed to fighting for additional funding for schools and parks and other amenities that can bring more stability for the families and children who are setting their roots in the 31st Ward, and will continue to do so.