Chicago to Waste Millions on Park Plan

-By Warner Todd Huston

The Chicago Park District is wasting millions more of the taxpayer’s money by hiring a New York landscaping firm to redesign portions of Grant Park and Northerly Island just as it recently announced plans for employee lay offs to try and balance its $400 million budget.

Chicago residents will recall that in the dead of night in the Summer of 2003 Mayor Daley sent bulldozers onto Northerly Island to destroy the Meigs Field airport runways so that he could reclaim the property as another one of his vaunted park space projects. In 2003, Daley made the silly excuse that Meigs Field airport was a “security risk” in a post 9/11 world, but everyone knows this was just another example of Daley’s arrogance.

Since 2003 little has been decided about that space but that appears to be changing.

The Chicago Park District has announced plans to award this design project to the firm of Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates Inc. based in Brooklyn, New York at a cost of $4.2 million.

So, the Park District carps about its budget woes it announces projects it can’t afford while at the same time awarding a contract worth millions to a firm outside the city and state.

Sounds like typical government waste to me. How about you?
“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
–Samuel Johnson

Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer, has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and is featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s,,,,,, Human Events Magazine,, and the New Media Journal, among many, many others. Additionally, he has been a frequent guest on talk-radio programs to discuss his opinion editorials and current events and is currently the co-host of “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Conservatism” heard on BlogTalkRadio. Warner is also the editor of the Cook County Page for

He has also written for several history magazines and appears in the new book “Americans on Politics, Policy and Pop Culture” which can be purchased on He is also the owner and operator of Feel free to contact him with any comments or questions : EMAIL Warner Todd Huston

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