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Chicago Fire plans new training facility on former CHA site

January 29, 2022 GMT

CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Fire soccer team is considering building a training facility on land that once was one of the Chicago Housing Authority’s largest public housing developments.

The Major League Soccer team, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and the housing authority’s CEO announced Thursday they have started discussions about developing 30 acres of vacant land on Chicago’s Near West Side. The site would house a headquarters and training center for the Fire, they said.

Under a long-term lease agreement, the Fire would develop the multimillion-dollar facility and provide community benefits and investments, officials said. That would include investing in neighboring public housing sites, providing jobs to people in the community and recreational opportunities for young people.

The property was formerly the site of the ABLA Homes, once home to almost 17,000 people in 3,600 units, WTTW Chicago reported.

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The proposal will be discussed at community meetings over the coming weeks.

“In neighborhoods across the city, soccer brings people together, fostering a strong sense of history and community while showing immense passion for the game,” said Chicago Fire FC President Ishwara Glassman Chrein. “We look forward to presenting the project to the local community, hearing their feedback, and creating new opportunities for residents of the Near West Side to enjoy the game.”