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Center to create logistics jobs in Chicago

Posted on March 8, 2016

A newly reopened center is creating logistics jobs in Chicago.

Construction has been restarted on the Transportation, Distribution and Logistics (TDL) Center at Olive-Harvey College, eight months after the State of Illinois shuttered the site as part of the ongoing state budget impasse.

The facility, a first-of-its-kind in Illinois that will prepare students for the more than 110,000 TDL jobs coming to the region over the next decade, will open more than a year and a half late and cost at least an additional $4 million due to the work stoppage.

In taking over the project from the Illinois Capital Development Board (CDB), City Colleges is committing to completing the project in time for its Fall 2017 semester.

The 103,000 square foot Olive-Harvey facility, which will serve 3,000 students, has been designed with input from City Colleges’ College to Careers faculty and industry partners. Through College to Careers, launched by Mayor Emanuel and Chancellor Hyman in 2011, City Colleges faculty and staff partner with industry leaders to design curriculum and facilities and offer internships and job opportunities to ensure Chicagoans are ready to hit the ground running in fast-growing fields.

At 60 percent complete, the project will require an estimated $23 million to finish. That amount includes an estimated $4 million in new costs, resulting from damage to the facility from the work stoppage and the eight-month delay (i.e., all exposed outside insulation needs to be stripped and replaced). Twelve million dollars in new funds are needed, which will be paid for by shifting priorities in City Colleges’ capital plan, slowing down planned IT and maintenance projects.

The facility will include automotive and diesel engine laboratories, an engine dynamometer, classrooms, simulated driving facilities, a testing center and vehicle bays, among other features. To give students hands-on training in the industry, the facility will also feature a high-tech central store warehouse environment that will act as a supply chain hub to efficiently provide office supplies to City Colleges’ seven campuses, six satellites and District Office. The project is targeting LEED Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.