The new, 14,164-square-foot library branch, located at 955 E. 131st St. on Chicago's Far South Side, is a $7.5 million project first announced in 2016 that replaced the previous library within the Altgeld Gardens/Murray Homes community.
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The Altgeld Branch will offer job search and computer skill training, as well as homework help and traditional library programs like book clubs, film screenings and story time.
The branch will be open to the public in coming weeks, city officials said.
CPL expands to Sunday hours
All CPL branches will expand to include Sunday hours - through a phased rollout plan - by the end of 2021. Beginning April 18, CPL's Altgeld, Mount Greenwood, South Shore, Back of the Yards, Chinatown, Merlo, Edgewater, Independence, Richard M. Daley and Austin branch libraries will add an additional day of service to the public, opening from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sundays.
The first nine branches opened on Sundays in December 2019, in addition to the Harold Washington Library Center, and CPL's three regional libraries - Sulzer, Legler and Woodson Regional - which are open 68 hours per week, including Sundays.
One Summer Chicago applications open
Lightfoot was thinking ahead to summer in announcing services to help keep kids busy this year.
The One Summer Chicago program will provide youth with employment and enrichment opportunities during the summer months. One Summer Chicago offers summer employment to youth between the ages of 14 and 24. Most programs are between 20 and 25 hours per week.
Last year, more than 20,000 young people across the city had summer jobs directly from this program. This upcoming summer, young people will be compensated for participating in career exploration opportunities in fields such as coding and tech, healthcare, media and more.
One Summer Chicago will run from July 5 to Aug. 13 and will include remote and socially distanced, in-person job and life-skills training for youth ages 14 to 24. The application deadline is June 11, and it can be found at OneSummerChicago.org. More than 21,000 slots are available for youth this summer.
Returning this year under the OSC portfolio is the Chicago Youth Service Corps, Everyone Can Code, Photography for All programs and more. One Summer Chicago is an integral part of "My CHI. My Future."
Lightfoot also touched on the need to get kids back to school Wednesday. CPS high schoolers are projected to be back in the classroom by April 19, but the CTU wants to delay that target date, citing the recent uptick in COVID cases across the city.
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"We want to keep our kids safe, we want to keep their families safe, right? Our students are going to be taking multiple buses; many of our students are students in temporary living situations, meaning they're either unhoused or they move from home to home or they're doubled up," one CTU member said Wednesday.
The mayor said that for now the plan is to get high schoolers back into the classroom by the planned date.
To learn more about CPL, visit chipublib.org.