May 23, 2022

Federal Judge Tosses Obama Presidential Center Lawsuit

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

A federal judge declared Tuesday that “construction should commence without delay” on the Obama Presidential Center in historic Jackson Park.

But don’t expect groundbreaking any time soon. A crucial federal review is still pending, and the legal challenge against the city of Chicago and the Chicago Park District may not be over.

The decision by U.S. District Judge John Blakey to toss a lawsuit threatening to block the Obama Center means the project has cleared a significant hurdle. The lawsuit has loomed over the project since May 14, 2018.

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Source: Obama Foundation

From the Chicago Tribune

The center “surely provides a multitude of benefits to the public. It will offer a range of cultural, artistic, and recreational opportunities … as well as provide increased access to other areas of Jackson Park and the Museum of Science and Industry,” U.S. District Judge John Robert Blakey said in a written ruling hours after hearing arguments on both sides in a Chicago courtroom Tuesday.

The foundation still has to finish a federal review process before it can break ground on the $500 million, sprawling development. And the environmental group that sued to stop the project has vowed to appeal Blakey’s ruling. But Tuesday’s decision removes one major hurdle.

“Everyone’s had their day in court. … There’s been no rush to judgment,” he said before declaring there should be “no delay in construction. This case is dismissed.”

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See Also: Full Text of Judge John Blakey’s Ruling

See Also: MacArthur Foundation Provides $5 Million Grant to Create a Chicago Public Library Branch at Obama Presidential Center (June 3, 2019)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.