Proposed architecture for Obama's Presidential Center released

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Barack and Michelle Obama have released a set of new renderings and a movie showing the cultural complex celebrating his presidency, which is to be built on Chicago's South Side.

The foundation released a video Tuesday night, in which Obama made numerous same comments repeated in the email, and called his Center an example of "what ordinary people have the power to do together".

Despite such claims, a coalition of eight community groups on the South Side is demanding the Obama Foundation sign an agreement guaranteeing neighborhood involvement in the development and maintenance of the Obama Center. Because at the end of the day, the real action won't happen here. That was true when I was a candidate for president, and it's true now.

There will also be a two-story forum building with meeting spaces, an auditorium and a public restaurant.

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Obama said the museum tower, which will contain a ticketed exhibition space dedicated to the Obamas, the Civil Rights Movement and broader African-American history, represents "ascension, hope and what ordinary people have the power to do together". "It requires listening", read the Foundation statement. Not just listening for show, but actively incorporating what we've learned into the plans.

Obama stressed that public input has and will continue to be central to the design process. However, those design changes did little to address the community's concern with disrupting the Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux-designed park.

"While we don't expect everyone to agree with every element of the plan, we look forward to working with people across the community and the city to make the most of the opportunity to create a global destination that will showcase the South Side to the world", the spokesperson said in a statement. And we're far from finished.

More than 100 U of C faculty members who say they support the location of an Obama Center near the campus nevertheless are opposing plans for it on economic and preservation grounds. "We want it to be a place full of life and activity, where Chicagoans and visitors alike can explore, exchange ideas, learn, and have some fun". "It's a public recognition of many people's stories". "The economic impact to the people who live there now would be fantastic". "So, as you might guess, I've been pretty hands-on in the plans for this Center - and Michelle has, too".

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