Former Cub Jason Heyward, Fire team up to open sports complex on Chicago's West Side
CHICAGO (CBS) – Several charity groups including the Chicago Fire Foundation and Jason and Vedrana Heyward are combining forces to open the North Austin Center on Chicago's West Side.
The 10-acre, $31 million project will provide equitable access to education, sports and other services.
That includes the Jason Heyward Baseball Academy, his latest of many contributions to the local community.
"I see what that opportunity that they gave me and my brother, just through going to school and graduating," Heyward said. "But I also understood how much it took to get to this point and how much support it meant to have from them and so many others. So to put a facility like this one here … for me, who better to use their platforms and cross paths with the families that are going to walk through here?"
Heyward added that while he's no longer a Chicago Cub, he still continues to appreciate Chicago as home.
"We're very passionate about being involved in our community," said Fire head coach Ezra Hendrickson. "And this is the latest example of us doing just that. Here's a world class facility for the kids in the community to come out and have just a safe haven, a safe place for them to enjoy a lot of different sports and learn a lot of different things."
The Chicago Fire Foundation will provide 20 hours of free sports programming at the campus each week.
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