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Daley Defends 'Plan for Transformation' Delays

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Chicago Mayor Richard Daley is defending his ambitious revamp of the city’s public housing. That’s after a Chicago Tribune analysis showed that Daley’s plan is significantly behind schedule.

Daley’s so-called “plan for transformation” was supposed to demolish rundown highrise projects, and replace them with low-rise mixed-income communities.

But a newspaper analysis shows demolition is on track—but construction of replacement housing is lagging behind.

Today the mayor adamantly defended his program.

DALEY: I said we’re going to rebuild their souls. Not give them an apartment, not give them a home, but you rebuild their souls.

The plan for transformation was supposed to be complete by 2010, but the Chicago Housing Authority is now aiming for 2015. When pressed about the delay, Daley bristled and blamed the recent downturn in the economy.

DALEY: Recession! Look at your business—how many people are being laid off. Maybe you won’t have a job tomorrow.

The mayor says overall the plan for transformation is going well.

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