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Obama Library May Displace Young Athletes In Jackson Park

(CBS) -- When the site for the Obama Presidential Library was revealed, Jackson Park learned it would be home to history.

But the blueprint for the grounds could force parents and kids to play elsewhere.

CBS 2's Jeremy Ross reports.

The Wolf Pack Program huddles kids into youth sports. Director Ernest Radcliffe says his program has called this gridiron and nearby fields home for 19 years. But days ago he learned it could eventually be evicted.

"I don't believe we have a whole lot of time here," he says.

It's an area where the more than $500 million Obama library is expected to open by 2021.

The footprint for the facility stretches from 60th to 63 and runs from Cornell to Stony Island, possibly running through where running backs and Anthony Johnson's son plays. He calls it a "Catch-22," a paradox, because many locals are excited about the project, too.

Radcliffe says he doesn't have a plan to relocate yet. Traveling to other sidelines could mean crossing potentially dangerous gang lines.

"I'm all in favor of the library, but I'm in favor of this field as well," Johnson says.

The Obama Foundation released a statement Friday night:

"We understand the importance of the fields to the community and will be working closely with the City and the Park District to consider all implications."

 

EMERGENCY COMPONENT - LOCAL

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