Press: Block Club Chicago

Shuttered Little Village Library Would Be Turned Into Community Center Under Nonprofit’s Plan

LITTLE VILLAGE — After raising $2 million over the last year and a half, a Little Village-based nonprofit is on track with its plan to convert an abandoned library into an office and community space on Cermak Road.

Latinos Progresando, a nonprofit that provides legal aid for immigrants, has raised 80 percent of the funding for a planned adaptive reuse of the old Marshall Square Library building at 2724 W. Cermak Rd.

The community development group, which works on a range of issues including immigration, health, peace and education, wants to convert the former library into a new office, with space for their legal services and the community by next year.

Latinos Progresando is working with Canopy / Architecture + Design.

The library “has always been a space for the community to enjoy, and learn and get together to build positive things…[This plan aims] to get it back to that — a space that is giving back to the community and being offered up to the community,” Luis Gutierrez, CEO and founder of Latinos Progresando, said.

As part of the plan, the 9,300-square-foot area will have legal services on the first floor, with offices for the organizations’ various initiatives as part of the Marshall Square Resource Network. The second floor will include conference rooms and a larger space for “community-wide programming,” Gutierrez said.

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