In what may have been the most fun urban planning project meeting in recent memory, former-president Barack Obama unveiled the plans for the Obama Presidential Library and Center at the South Shore Cultural Center.

Obama was joined by former First Lady Michelle, as well as Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Illinois Senate President John Cullerton, Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th), Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx, and a host of other local dignitaries, who shared their enthusiasm for the coming project and its future role in a South Side museum campus.

“We want this to be a living center which the community itself feels on an ongoing basis—they can bring their children, participate in activities, see a concert, learn how to make a movie, record music…learn how to organize,” Obama said.

In the informal round-table discussion, which lasted a little more than an hour, a jovial and seemingly stress-free Obama said that he hoped that the Center and its 200,000 square foot campus would be a transformational project for the community, and that it would transform the area into a “people’s park.” He also said that the center would be more than just a park, but a place where the next generation of leaders could be trained.

CHICAGOIST