CHICAGO (FOX 32) - Despite traffic-halting protests, two controversial developments are getting the go-ahead in Chicago. The city council approved billions in financing for The 78 development, as well as the highly controversial Lincoln Yards.
It's a signature deal for Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who got help from Mayor-elect Lori Lightfoot.
“I know there's a lot of hard feelings, a lot of strong feelings, and that's OK,” Mayor Emanuel said. “But at the end of the day, we've had that debate, and it’s time to move forward and shape a single future.”
That future includes Lincoln Yards, a $6 billion riverfront development on the North Side, and The 78, a South Loop build so big it would create Chicago’s 78th neighborhood.
The council OK’d TIF funds for both to the tune of $2.4 billion.
“This is a pretty good deal for the City of Chicago no matter how you slice it,” said Ald. Patrick O’Connor, 40th Ward.
While Ald. O'Connor celebrated, the alderman-elect who unseated him protested.
"There's a mandate in the city to have new leadership to be able to look through deals like this and not rush it through,” said Andre Vasquez, 40th Ward Alderman-elect.
But it was Mayor-Elect Lightfoot who dropped her opposition after developers promised to use more minority and female-owned firms
However, don’t expect these votes to end this debate. Mayor-elect Lightfoot says she will work improve these deals and bring community voices into the process going forward.