By Jim Bowman
Rep. LaShawn Ford (Dem, IL-8) wanted Cicero Ave. to be renamed for Nelson Mandela from one end to the other. But the IL House cut the renamed portion to Roosevelt on one end, Grand Ave. on the other.
It's going to cost $20,000, which Ford agreed "might seem like a really high price for new street signs." But these signs will be special.
He wants "to make sure everyone who drives down that road knows it's Mandela Road. . . . There will be a big sign or plaque at every stop light," paying tribute to Mandela.
Ford, who the Trib noted "faces a federal bank fraud charge," praised Mandela as "a great man who believed in forgiveness and coming together," adding, "The district that I represent" — Western Springs, La Grange, La Grange Park, Brookfield, Forest Park, Proviso Township, Riverside, North Riverside, Berwyn, Oak Park, and Austin — "needs to see more hope."
He envisioned the new Mandela Road as "as a symbol to my people that there is hope, and hope for change. That's what Mandela stands for."
The motion passed on a 103-0 vote and now heads to the Senate.