CHICAGO – At least six locations in three different states entered official bids by Monday’s deadline in an effort to house Barack Obama’s presidential library.
Four of the confirmed bidders are from Chicago, the president’s hometown, and a fifth was expected. Obama’s birth state of Hawaii offered an oceanfront location in Honolulu. And Columbia University, where he got his undergraduate degree, pitched a West Harlem site in New York City.
While the Obama Foundation, which is planning the library, declined to confirm the bids it has received, planners for the six widely reported potential locations all confirmed they had submitted proposals. A bid expected from the Bronzeville neighborhood in Chicago could not be immediately confirmed.
Four of the five Chicago locations are on the city’s South Side. They are: the University of Chicago, where Obama taught constitutional law for 12 years; Chicago State University; vacant land in Bronzeville that was part of Chicago’s failed bid for the 2016 Olympics; and a former steel plant near Lake Michigan being pitched by real estate developer Dan McCaffery.
The University of Illinois-Chicago also is pitching potential locations on and off campus on the city’s West Side.