090222 Mahalia Jackson Court Opening Colin Boyle 4570

CHICAGO – State Senator Elgie R. Sims, Jr. announced that a new area in Chicago is being recognized as a State-Designated Cultural District.

“For years I have worked to implement and promote economic development for our communities to improve,” said Sims (D-Springfield). “The designation will represent and preserve our Black history, develop opportunities and encourage empowerment, culture, and homage”

State-Designated Cultural Districts are communities, towns or specific geographic areas that have a distinct shared historical and cultural identity that binds the community together. The purpose of the program is to encourage economic development, support the preservation and development of history and culturally significant structures, traditions and languages, foster local cultural development and education, provide a focal point for celebrating communities’ unique cultural identities, and promote equitable growth and opportunity without generating displacement.

The new district in Chicago, Mahalia Jackson 79th Street Cultural District, is led the Greater Chatham Initiative. Now, they will be eligible to apply for $3 million in funding that will be tailored to fit the needs of individual Cultural Districts and support the goals of the program to foster economic development and help communities preserve their unique cultural identities.

Learn more about the Greater Chatham Initiative.