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The Obama Presidential Center will help to continue the revitalization of historic Jackson Park

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Barack and Michelle Obama have been doing their best to keep the vision that they built for us the people while in office and one of the biggest projects they have been working on is The Obama Presidential Center.

The Obama Presidential Center will be a new landmark for the South Side and an economic engine for the city of Chicago — drawing hundreds of thousands of visitors every year, creating thousands of new jobs on the South Side — and will help to continue the revitalization of historic Jackson Park. The campus will remove barriers and seamlessly connect the park to the lakefront, and will be unified with other local South Side institutions. It will be a place for all seasons, with winding landscapes, a sledding hill, and quiet spaces to read or reflect. The majority of the space will be free and open to the public.

The Foundation will include the following buildings: Forum, Museum, Library, Plaza, Atlethic Center

The Forum Building

The Forum is two-story public meeting space, with one story above grade and one below ground, where people of all backgrounds can come together for programming. Visitors might take in a performance in the auditorium, create something in the broadcast studio, visit the public winter garden, or even grab a bite to eat in the restaurant. Like much of the Campus, the majority of this space will be free and open to the public.

The Museum Building

The Museum building is a tower — representing ascension, hope, and what ordinary people have the power to do together. Its design was inspired by a photo of four hands coming together. Like these hands, each facade of the four-sided tower will be a little different from the next — enhanced with texture and detail, and offering a beautiful and unique experience from all angles.

The Museum will serve as a landmark for the Campus, welcoming visitors to the Center, Jackson Park, and the South Side — but will have a relatively small footprint within the Campus. Its lower floors will house exhibitions that tell the Obamas’ story, as situated within the context of history: civil rights history, African-American history, the history of Chicago, and United States history. The rest of the building will be filled with other public spaces, including the top floor which will feature a reflective observation space that will be free and open to the public, with spectacular views of Lake Michigan and Jackson Park.


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