State plans to turn closed Southwestern Kmart store into refuge for immigrants

State officials plan to convert the former Kmart building on the southwest side into a haven for newly arrived immigrants.

But after being briefed on the state’s plans for the site at 7050 S. Pulaski Road, Ald. He said he hopes

In a statement, Tavares said he was “extremely concerned about the safety of our community and the people who live in this place,” adding that he was urging state legislators to engage local residents.

“We need a plan to ensure the safety of the community and its residents,” Tavares said.

Rep. Angie Guerrero Cuella, representing Ward 13, also expressed concerns about the safety of the planned facility.

“There are serious questions and concerns about the safety and humaneness of the proposed Kmart facility and its facilities,” Guerrero-Cuellar said. We have requested that the project be put on hold until we can confirm that it will be built as a decent house.

State Senator Mike Porfirio, who represents the 13th District, also said he is working with the state to keep the community abreast of plans.

“I have been in contact with the governor’s office and his administration to ensure that all community concerns are being addressed and informed,” Porfirio said in a statement. We are committed to working with our community stakeholders and colleagues to ensure this facility is safe and secure for all involved, including our welcoming families to the state.”

It’s not clear at this time when the building will start accepting immigrants. The mayor’s office and the Illinois Department of Human Services did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

According to past development presentations, the property is 96,268 square feet. It was one of a group of Kmart stores nationwide that closed in 2016, according to media reports at the time.

Similar plans recently Southside elementary school closed to shelter It was hit with controversy. The opening of the shelter was delayed several weeks after Aldo. Janet Taylor, 20, and her ward residents pushed it back to embrace community input.

When the school finally opened last week, some residents stood in front of buses transporting asylum seekers to the former James Wadsworth Elementary School.

Over the past few months, the city has received more than 5,140 immigrants from the southern US border on charter buses from Texas to cities in the north, including Chicago. In December, 1,531 new arrivals were living in city shelters. In total, he has 3,936 people seeking shelter provided by the city, Cook County and the state, according to city officials.

Asylum seekers are temporarily housed in other shelters and hotels in Chicago and suburban Cook County.

A recent proposal to house immigrants in schools on the South Side met opposition from the community State plans to turn closed Southwestern Kmart store into refuge for immigrants

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