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New Southland Development Authority seeks to reclaim ‘economic powerhouse’ status for region


Addressing wealth inequality is one goal of a new economic growth organization called the Southland Development Authority.

Dozens of local leaders celebrated the group’s launch Wednesday night at Thornton Distilling Co. in Thornton.

“Decades ago, the south suburbs were the heart of the Chicagoland economy, a bustling hub for manufacturing with affordable, quality communities for families,” officials said in an announcement about the launch.

“From my experience as alderman in the 4th Ward in the city of Chicago, I know that it takes years to transform communities, but it can be done,” Preckwinkle said.

Leaders described Southland Development Authority as a public-private partnership that will seek developers to invest in the area. The effort will be the first of its kind in Illinois, organizers said, modeled after programs in Philadelphia, Cincinnati and other places. The development authority is an outcome of a program known as the South Suburban Economic Growth Initiative…Please click here to read Ted Slowik’s column in the Tribune/Daily Southtown.

Cook County issued a press release about the event: Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle Announces Launch of Southland Development Authority. Presentation slides and photos are also available. Learn more about the Southland Development Authority and SSEGI here.

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