To the Editor:
Recent stories about the just released 7th Circuit opinion in the Jackson Park OPC lawsuit fail to understand that it is little more than a determined effort to completely duck out of deciding any of the irrelevant but sensitive legal consequences.
It is not a ruling on the merits, which both Plaintiffs and Defendants wanted. It leaves a number of options for further prolonging the lawsuit going forward, including a convenient way to simply file a more comprehensive amended Complaint and, in effect, start all over.
Pragmatically, it is arguably not a loss for Protect Our Parks but a win, because it will delay for another year or two any attempt to start construction of the OPC in Jackson Park.
If the Obama Foundation is anxious to immediately start breaking ground, all they really have to do is agree to relocate the proposed OPC several blocks west out of Jackson Park public property to the nearby available and underserved Washington Park location that POP has proposed, and where much of the the land is already owned by UChicago.
Since that will serve the interests of the Obama Foundation, UChicago, the public interest, and Mayor Lightfoot's announced new program of stimulating investments in historically underserved South Side neighborhoods, and is the only objective of the pending lawsuit, it would be unanimously approved as a win, win, win, win, win.
Herb Caplan, president, Protect Our Parks