South loop

$7B Project ‘The 78' Set to Open in Chicago's South Loop

NBCUniversal, Inc.

A massive $7 billion construction project is finally set to come to the South Loop.

The development known as 'The 78' is a new Chicago community and is scheduled to break ground soon, Mayor Lori Lightfoot confirmed the details Wednesday.

Lightfoot calls the plan a game changer.

"Education, technology, entrepreneurship, transportation, housing, and infrastructure, all right here,” she said.

The community will be located along the Chicago River from the South Loop to Chinatown, and will include apartments, student housing, retail space and a University of Illinois-led innovation center, or DPI, Discovery Partners' Institute.

"We are launching a new era for Chicago as an extraordinary focal point for an unparalleled tech workforce and research and development that will attract talent from around the world," Gov. J.B. Pritzker said. "It will change the face of the city with improvements like the relocation of Metra tracks, building a new 15th street bridge, and reconstruction of new seawalls that add more riverfront space."

The cost includes $500 million in state funding, with the university raising $230 million from the private sector.

U of I plans to begin building its research facility within the next 12 months.

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