Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and Mayor Rahm Emanuel have announced today that the state will earmark $1.5 million to help rehab 35 buildings in the historic Pullman neighborhood on the far South Side. Founded in the 1880s by industrialist George Pullman, the neighborhood was once the home to the Pullman Palace Car Company, and was one of the midwest's most important factory towns. Today, many of the historic buildings still remain, however the city and state will step in to help rehab and flip nearly three dozen properties in the area.
The state money comes from a national settlement that involved the country's five largest banks who were accused mortgage fraud during the foreclosure crisis. Earlier this year, the city was approved to purchase 20 single family homes in the area, which will be transferred to the Chicago Neighborhoods Initiative to be rehabbed and sold as a part of the city's "affordable historic home revitalization initiative". $1.3 million of the state funds will go to rehabbing and selling the 20 homes. With the remaining $200,000, an additional 15 buildings will be purchased, rehabbed and turned into 40 rental units. In addition to the state money, the city will also chip in $400,000 to help families finance the rehabbed single family homes.
According to the city, the Pullman area has received over $226 million in public and private investments, which have led to the creation of nearly 1,500 jobs. The area is also a popular tourism destination for history and architecture buffs, and witnesses nearly 300,000 visitors a year. Earlier this year, Senators Dick Durbin and Mark Kirk along with Representative Robin Kelly announced a plan to turn the historic district in a national park. As Pullman continues its improvement in the next year or two, big changes could be in store for the historic area.
·State, city to rehab homes in Pullman neighborhood [Tribune]
·Mayor Emanuel, Attorney General Madigan, Alderman Beale and Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives Announce $1.5 Million Grant to Continue Affordable Home Rehabilitation in Pullman [City of Chicago]
·Previous Pullman coverage [Curbed Chicago]