City of Racine – Today, City of Racine Mayor Cory Mason and Alderman Marcus West released the following statement on the historic investments being made in the City’s Lincoln-King neighborhood:

“As leaders in the City we are incredibly excited and humbled to be able to make a historic investment in the Lincoln-Neighborhood. We thank the Governor for his direct support of our vision to build the much needed Racine Community Health Center, rebuild a beloved but aging Community Center, and build up new housing options for residents – which will create new options for homeownership. The Governor’s combined $35 million dollar grants to the City provide us a once in a lifetime opportunity to invest in the residents and the future of the Lincoln-King neighborhood.

On the vacant block next to Julian Thomas Elementary School, it is our goal to build a Federally Qualified Health Center that breaks down barriers for those who need access to high quality healthcare. Racine is the biggest City in the Midwest without a federally qualified health center, and it’s imperative that we address the very real health disparities that exist in our community.

On that same block, as part of one big complex, we will build a brand new Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center. This rebuilt center will be at least as big as the current center, with modern amenities, and built to a standard meant to serve future generations. Just as the current center served us and our parents well, the Lincoln-King Neighborhood deserves a center meant to serve our children and grandchildren. As part of our planning process, we will gather broad community input about the design and types of uses that should be incorporated into a 21st century community center. The historic grant announcements on Friday were the beginning, not the end, of this process, and we are committed to engaging residents and stakeholders to learn their ideas and vision for the new King Community Center. You also have our commitment to not close the doors of the current King Center before the new Center is open.

Finally, we want to express that all of this will take time – you will not see construction happening in the next few months. While we are incredibly grateful to the Governor and other community partners who are invested in this vision, there are still millions of dollars to raise. It is our hope that that in the months ahead we can raise the funds and – with the community – plan the details of these investments that we believe will be truly transformational for the neighborhood and the City. We thank all those who are equally excited by the opportunity and we look forward to working with everyone to make this vision a reality.”

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