U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush has declared a “fight to the finish” to see NorthPoint Development’s planned Compass Global Logistics Hub get built.
Rush, D-Chicago, at an event on Sunday in Chicago urged Gov. JB Pritzker to make the project happen, the latest effort to call on the governor to intervene to hasten development of the project.
It’s also the latest instance of the fight over NorthPoint moving to Chicago after being waged in Joliet in 2020 and in Elwood before then.
Elwood and the area to be annexed into Joliet for the Compass Global Logistics Hub are in the 1st Congressional District represented by Rush.
Rush could not be reached for comment on Monday.
In a written statement issued over the weekend, Rush vowed to push for the NorthPoint project.
“I am absolutely, firmly and totally committed to this NorthPoint job creation opportunity,” Rush said in the statement. “There is no way under Heaven’s earth that I will passively sit by and watch 10,000 sorely needed jobs in my district evaporate into thin air. We will fight until the finish about this!”
Rush spoke at an event on Sunday that included the Union of the Unemployed at the Parkway Ballroom in Chicago.
The Union for the Unemployed is urging action on the NorthPoint project for the 10,000 jobs that NorthPoint says it will produce as it develops the logistics and industrial park that will stretch from Joliet to Elwood and perhaps even Manhattan before it is completed.
The event at the Parkway Ballroom follows a press conference held last week at the Pritzker Military Museum and Library in Chicago at which veterans voiced opposition to the project because of its potential impact on the Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood.
The week before that, Warehouse Workers for Justice, which opposes the NorthPoint project, demonstrated outside the Thompson Center in downtown Chicago.
On Wednesday, the Union for the Unemployed plans it first car caravan demonstration around the Thompson Center in Chicago and more on Wednesdays after that.
“We need the governor’s attention,” Rev. Frank Walton, chairman of the Union of the Unemployed, said Monday.
Gov. Pritzker is being called upon to intervene over a bridge NorthPoint would need to build for Compass Global Logistics Hub. The proposed bridge requires use of a road in Elwood. The village is in court trying to block the bridge. NorthPoint wants Pritzker to order a state takeover of the road.
A previous statement from the governor’s spokesperson called state takeover of a local road for the project a “rare and drastic” measure and urged the local communities to work out the problem.
“The governor can make that call,” Walton said. “We don’t want to lose 10,000 jobs.”
The Joliet annexation agreement for 1,260 acres requires NorthPoint to build a bridge over Route 53 to build out the “closed-loop” design that the developer contends will reduce truck traffic on that highway and other local roads.
“The NorthPoint project as I see it is a closed-loop system that will help alleviate the problem,” Walton said. “Make that bridge happen. That can be a boost to the economy.”