In a statement signed by the group’s board president Lauren Moltz and executive director Juanita Irizarry, Friends of the Parks says:
“Contrary to recent reports, our board remains fully united on the preservation of our lakefront and ensuring that the public trust doctrine is not ignored. We do believe that the Lucas Museum has a place in Chicago for all to enjoy, but not at the expense of one our most precious public resources. We have always said we were open to discussions. Anything else you hear is rumor and speculation. We are not dropping the lawsuit.”
The Sun-Times reported Friday morning that the group’s board members voted overwhelmingly to drop the lawsuit and cut a deal with the city. It would potentially allow the city to go forward with a plan to demolish McCormick Place’s Lakeside Center to make way for the museum. The report says the city would agree to create more parkland along the lakeshore and elsewhere as part of the deal.
Calls to Friends of the Parks, the group’s lawyer Thomas Geoghegan, and the city have yet to be returned.
Check back for updates.
Follow Paris Schutz on Twitter: @paschutz
May 11: Friends of the Parks has made some powerful enemies in maintaining its opposition to any lakefront site for the Lucas Museum. Is it worth losing the museum in order to maintain the sanctity of the lakefront?
May 4: After Friends of the Parks declared its opposition to any lakefront site for the Lucas Museum, Mellody Hobson, wife of movie mogul George Lucas and board member of the Lucas Museum, said they were “seriously pursuing locations outside of Chicago.”
May 3: “We are now seriously pursuing locations outside of Chicago,” Mellody Hobson, wife of movie mogul George Lucas and board member of the Lucas Museum, said in a statement. “If the museum is forced to leave, it will be because of the Friends of the Parks and that is no victory for anyone.”
April 26: As Mayor Rahm Emanuel pushes McCormick Place as the new location for the Lucas Musuem, a group of faith and community leaders met Tuesday to throw their support behind the plan. WBEZ's Lauren Chooljian will bring us the latest.