Construction on the Obama presidential center was suspended after a noose was found at the site Thursday morning.
“We have zero tolerance for any form of prejudice or hatred on our site,” Lakeside Alliance – a joint venture of five construction companies – said in a statement.
While construction is on hold, the company will hold additional anti-bias training and talks.
“We are horrified that this is happening on our site,” Lakeside Alliance said. The company is offering a $100,000 reward to help find the person(s) responsible.
Construction on the Obama Presidential Center began in August 2021, five years after former President Barack Obama announced the choice of Jackson Park to house what was initially billed as a presidential library. The project has been delayed by numerous court challenges and federal reviews related to the location in the historic park.
Barack and Michelle Obama were both present for an inauguration ceremony in September 2021
“We want this center to be more than a static museum or a source of archival research. It won’t just be a collection of campaign memorabilia or Michelle’s prom dresses, although I know everyone will come to see them,” he joked. “It won’t just be an exercise in nostalgia or looking back. We want to look forward.
The Obama Foundation released a statement commenting on the incident:
“This shameless act of cowardice and hatred is designed to draw attention and divide us. Our priority is to protect the health and safety of our staff. We have informed the authorities investigating the incident.
Contact Patty Wetli: @pattywetli | (773) 509-5623 | [email protected]