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Children's Museum Orphaned (Sort Of)

By Alicia Dorr in News on Oct 17, 2006 6:02PM

The debate over the possible locations for the new Children's Museum site flared up at a meeting of the Grant Park Advisory Council. That is to say, of course, that there was some continued opposition to the idea of it even moving to Grant Park.

When 42nd Ward Alderman Burt Natarus spoke out against one of the first ideas for building the new museum on the Randolph side of the park, he had 2,100 signatures of his constituents, mainly residents in the high-rise buildings north of the park, behind him worried about possible traffic congestion, among other things. Last month Daley and officials from the museum announced that they had a $15 million gift from Allstate Insurance to go ahead with the plan to build a two-story building.

The new 100,000 square foot building is an answer to the overcrowded museum space at Navy Pier. Basically, they aren't staying there. But as option after option for the new site in Grant 19163478_817dc694eb_m.jpg Park were mulled over, the battle continued to appear to be largely between They Who Want The New Museum and They Who Want The "Free-And-Clear" LakeFront.

It seems like museum officials can't please anyone. The subterranean structure wasn't good enough, and now the center of debate is the plan for a structure at Monroe and Columbus. Many of the more than 50 people at the meeting voiced discontent with this plan, too. While it remains to be seen whether the museum will actually end up at that site is up in the air — what isn't, though, is the fact that the structure will be built in Grant Park. With $15 mil and Daley, that much, at least, seems certain.

Photo via Girlfactor.