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CHICAGO (WLS) — Work is well underway on a migrant base camp in Chicago’s Brighton Park neighborhood, but the legal fight continues Monday morning.
Protesters hope a restraining order filed against the city will stop the construction of the base camp in the Brighton Park neighborhood. A hearing is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. at the Daley Center.
Meanwhile, the city could be facing more hurdles in its plan to open the migrant base camp at 38th Street and California Avenue. An environmental report shows the site was contaminated.
The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency has not yet given the green light to go ahead with construction. If it doesn’t, the governor’s office said the state will not move forward with the project.
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Professor Donald Wink, a chemist at UIC, said the city will also need to monitor the air quality as well.
“In the case of the inhalation, the one that they are most concerned with, the one that is most concerning, is the mercury.”
The mayor’s office said the city is actively removing contaminants from the site, hoping to begin moving asylum seekers in the coming weeks.
The city is planning to move up to 2,000 migrants into the Brighton Park base camp by mid-December.
On Monday, the city released a statement saying, “As reported last week, the City of Chicago’s Department of Assets, Information, and Services contracted Terracon Consultants, Inc. to conduct an environmental investigation at the 3710 South California Avenue site. The sample results were compared to the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency’s remediation standards for residential use. According to the report, soil with mercury levels was identified at one location and was removed and properly disposed offsite at a landfill, and with the limited soil removal and placement and maintenance of the barrier, the site is safe for temporary residential use.
“Further base camp construction and remediation of an additional 1 ft. x 1 ft. x 1 ft. area of the 9.5-acre site will continue per the timeline set by the State of Illinois. There is no construction or remediation scheduled at this time. The City will share assessment of subsequent remediation as it becomes available.”