Mayor Lori Lightfoot joined the chorus of critics unhappy with the Legislature’s approval of a deal that could mean billions in state subsidies for Landmark Development’s One Central megaproject.
Lightfoot on Wednesday objected to Landmark lobbying lawmakers for the incentive package slipped into a state spending plan over the weekend “under the cover of darkness” in the waning hours of the legislative session, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
“I don’t like the way that they are conducting themselves,” Lightfoot told the paper. Her comments came hours before a community meeting where Landmark’s initial decision not to allow public comments was met with boos, Crain’s reported.
Earlier this week, four state lawmakers representing the area around the proposed One Central site complained they were iced out of negotiations over the potential subsidies.
The Legislature voted to allow Gov. J.B. Prtizker’s administration to negotiate a public-private partnership for a proposed $3.8 billion transit hub that would be a key element of the sprawling development. Landmark would build the hub and then be reimbursed for the costs by the state over 20 years before turning it over to the state, Landmark President Bob Dunn has said.
Landmark officials responded to the criticism from Lightfoot and the lawmakers saying the project is still in its infancy stages and promised a “robust” vetting process involving neighbors, officials and community leaders. [Chicago Sun-Times] — John O’Brien