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Latino State News

Rahm Emanuel Visits Little Village Chamber of Commerce

Knowing the importance of neighborhood communities, Rahm visited Little Village in South Lawndale last week to meet with the Chamber of Commerce. He joined the Chamber at Davila’s Restaurant to discuss the community’s needs.

Little Village has the largest Mexican-American population in the Midwest. With more than 1,000 businesses on 26th street, more sales-tax revenue is generated for the city there than any retail corridor besides the Magnificent Mile. Rahm heard from the business community and its leaders about the needs of the area and the importance of keeping the community vibrant.

Their top issues for Rahm were tourism, building a strong sense of safety, and helping residents find jobs. Another main issue was the lack of parking on 26th street, prohibiting tourism and new visitors in the area. Rahm was impressed with the passion and interest the community’s rich history has created, as second and third generation families who grew up here want to see it succeed. With a smile, Rahm told the Chamber the next generation taking over is the story of Chicago.

Following the meeting, Rahm took a tour of the neighborhood with Juan Rangel, CEO of United Neighborhood Organization, or UNO. UNO is one of the nation’s largest Hispanic-based charter school managers, operating nine schools in Chicago.

On the tour Rahm stopped in to visit local businesses, including a beauty shop and shoe store. He saw first-hand the tight-knit community that comprises Little Village. During the tour people came out to say hello and show their support. A woman driving a school bus was especially excited to meet Rahm.

The tour wrapped up with a brief press conference, where Rahm discussed the issues and ideas raised during his visit, and stated his interest in making sure Little Village continues to thrive.