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Article: Voters Reject Lakefront Expansion

From The Phoenix (Loyola’s official school newspaper):

By: LeeAnn Maton
Posted: 11/12/08
Edgewater residents voted to prohibit lakefront expansion by a margin of 60 percent in response to a controversial proposal that would expand and connect lakefront parks from Hollywood Avenue to Evanston.The proposal, promoted by Chicago group Friends of the Parks has recently ignited a vocal debate between supporters and opponents.”I thought it was very telling that 53 of the 54 precincts actually voted against Friends of the Parks’ plans,” said John Redell, an organizer of the opposition Web site www.stopthelandfill.org. Opponents view the expensive plan as unnecessary.Of the approximately 24,000 ballots cast in the ward, 11,500 voted to prohibit lakefront expansion. Eleanor Roemer, Public Trust & Policy director for Friends of the Parks, said a significant number of people with ballots didn’t even vote on the referendum and that voters calling her organization said they didn’t realize they were voting against park space when they cast their ballot.Roemer says the organization “take[s] seriously the expression of people’s concerns” and she hopes that dialogue with the community continues as planning moves forward.”It doesn’t change our goal,” Roemer said about the referendum. “It doesn’t change that we believe this will be a huge benefit not only to Rogers Park and Edgewater but to all of Chicago.”

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