Infamous Chicago housing project reborn

A mother and child, residents of the Cabrini-Green public housing project in Chicago, play in a playground adjoining the project, May 28, 1981. Charles Knoblock / AP
Construction in Chicago as the housing authority replaces the Cabrini Green low-incomehousing high-rise buildings (background) with mixed income townhomes and apartments, Oct. 5, 2003, in Chicago. Frank Polich / Reuters
Residents walk past one of the few remaining Chicago Housing Authority Cabrini-Green public housing buildings Jan. 12, 2005 in Chicago. The run-down and dilapidated buildings sit on prime real-estate property that the city of Chicago wants to tear down and redevelop. Tim Boyle / Getty Images
Produce grows at City Farm on Sept.30, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. City Farm is a non-profit venture that raises produce on a one-acre tract of land on the edge of the city's downtown once dominated by the Cabrini Green housing complex. The food raised at the farm is sold to many high-end restaurants, at a nearby farmer's market and to the public from the farm. Scott Olson / Getty Images
The new Target store in Chicago where the former housing project, Cabrini-Green once stood. NBC Chicago

The home of what was one of the nation’s most crime-ridden public housing projects continues its rebirth this weekend when a Target store opens on the site of Chicago’s notorious Cabrini-Green.

The new store, set to open its doors Sunday, will cover 150,000 square feet and employ as many as 200 people in the city’s Near North Side neighborhood. Read more about the store at

“The Green” was a Chicago Housing Authority project built in stages over 20 years starting in 1942. It consisted of more than 3,600 units in rowhouses and high-rises that took on colorful nicknames such as “The Rock,” “The Big O” and “Goldmine” as the project became home to street gangs, violence and poverty. Two Chicago police officers were shot and killed in Cabrini-Green in 1970, and in 1992, a 7-year-old boy’s death caused by a stray bullet gained national headlines.

In 1995, the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development took over management of the “The Green” and began demolishing buildings to make way for new development. The last of the high-rises was razed two years ago, with new townhomes and retail projects – including the Target – taking their place.