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CHICAGO-Local 4 of the International Laborers Union of America will build a meeting hall with office space on a city-owned lot at 3839 S. Halsted St. The 1,500-member union now rents space at 640 S. Clark St., but has been given notice the South Loop building will be demolished within a year to make way for a multifamily development.

The union will get the 12,000-sf vacant lot for $1, which is a write-down of $140,000 from its appraised value. Since the deal was struck with the department of planning and development, a Phase II environmental study discovered two underground gasoline storage tanks, and remediation is estimated at more than $185,000.

The site of a church in the late 19th century, later uses included auto storage and truck repair operations. The city acquired the land for $110,000 after a tax sale, according to property records.

Union representatives hope to complete the 4,000-sf, two-story building within nine months. The $1-million, brick and limestone building will have an environmentally-friendly “green roof” on 50% of its top.

“It’s a vacant piece of land, underused, and we could use the development on this site,” 11th Ward Alderman James A. Balcer says.

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