SPRINGFIELD – On Thursday, legislation co-sponsored by State Representative Brad Stephens (R-Rosemont) designating a strip of Milwaukee Avenue as the “Milwaukee Avenue Polish Heritage Corridor” passed out of the Illinois House. House Bill 5581 would designate the Milwaukee Avenue Polish Heritage Corridor along Milwaukee Avenue from Sangamon Street in Chicago to Greenwood Road in Niles.
“The Polish American community in the 20th District and Chicagoland have enriched our communities for generations,” said Rep. Stephens. “I’m glad this corridor will run through the 20th District and will recognize the cultural and historic contributions of the Polish American community in the Chicagoland area, particularly in Niles and Schiller Park. I look forward to seeing this bill move through the Senate and signed into law to make this important designation in our communities.”
The Milwaukee Avenue Corridor will run through the 20th District from Main Street to Touhy Avenue in Niles. This legislation requires appropriate plaques to be erected by the Department of Transportation along this route to recognize its designation. HB 5581 unanimously passed the House with 105 votes in favor of it.
According to Choose Chicago, the Polish community in Chicago began forming around the time of the 1850s. Chicago is also home to the Polish Museum of America and the Copernicus Center, as well as the “Polish Triangle” on the west side at the intersection of Milwaukee, Division, and Ashland Avenues.
Rep. Stephens is a member of the House Transportation: Regulation, Roads and Bridges and the Museums, Arts, & Cultural Enhancements Committees.