Questions Surrounding Walgreens

There are questions out there surrounding the Walgreens and how members of organized labor would not support opposition to a project such as this.  The issues were not about 
construction jobs, the issues were about site specific problems.  Issues with traffic flow, lack of sidewalks, safety, the multiple ordinance violations and the village not following its own Comprehensive Plan and Land Use Map.

Downers Grove Gardens neighborhood is a middle class, working class community.  Many of the families that live here are union families.  Sheet Metal, Plumbers and Pipe fitters, Iron Workers, Laborers, Electricians, Truck Drivers and Postal Workers all live on my street and there is a heavy presence in the surrounding neighborhood.  
The outpouring of support from these families that attended weekly neighborhood meetings, walked petitions, signed petitions, researched the proposal and attended many Village of Downers Grove and DuPage County Board meetings was simply amazing.
One of the things that unions pride themselves in is making sure their members are working in a safe environment. That is what we did for our neighborhood.  The proposal was an engineering disaster.  

Our neighborhood supports progress and construction jobs, many of those that signed the petition against the Walgreens, are out of work themselves. We understand the importance of development and the need for people to be working. We are confident that Walgreens will find a location that is suitable and the jobs will be there in the future.

Liz Chaplin


  1. I totally agree Liz. My father and brother were local 1 Boilermakers, my husband is a 597 piperfitter and I work in the benefit fund office for Local 501 plumbers and pipefitter. Both my husband and I are strong supporters of unions, but both of us were against this proposal to build Walgreens at 63rd St. and Woodward. The opposition to this proposal has nothing to do with union workers losing jobs. This is not a union issue. This is a safety issue. Union members are highly trained and certified tradesmen and safety in the workplace is a top priority. This project was red flagged from the very beginning as dangerous as evidenced in documents received through our FOIA requests. Any union should then understand the opposition of this proposal. To put danger/harm in a brother or sisters way is unacceptable. In addition, any jobs created in this proposal would be short term but the long term affects would be detrimental to the neighborhood and the 30,000 people that use the intersection of 63rd St. and Woodward. The risks simply outweigh the benefits in this proposal. Finally, Walgreens will find the right place to build. I know they are looking at commercial property down the street and when they do find the proper site for their store the jobs will be there. When that day comes and they break ground then it will become a union issue, because the developer and Walgreens will be held accountable for making sure those that build for them are union members.

  2. The bottom line resulting in Walgreen's withdrawal and acknowledgement of community concerns is that the residential community and nearby school with 300+ children and staff will be safer because the streets that are designed for residential traffic will remain residential. Congrats to all of the citizens that spoke up and fought to keep their streets and families safe.
    IDEA if Walgreens wants a new store in that area why don't they do what Jewel did on Ogden just west of Main? Build a new store on the site of the current Walgreens at Belmont and 63rd?

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