In new 34th Ward, billionaire’s son emerges as winner, set on addressing crime and development – Chicago Tribune newstrendslive

The brand-new 34th ward, which encompasses most of the western half the Loop and stretches into Greektown and Fulton Market, has a brand-new alderman.

Bill Conway — a former Cook County assistant state’s attorney, Navy veteran and son of the billionaire co-founder of the private equity firm The Carlyle Group — rebounded from his unsuccessful run for state’s attorney in 2020. According to unofficial returns, he won a commanding 67% over his opponent, Ascot Realty CEO James Ascot.

Conway addressed a jubilant crowd shortly before 9 p.m. Tuesday, telling supporters Ascot had called him to concede.

Conway pledged to address what he said was voters’ top concern: public safety. “We need to make sure our police officers have the resources they need to fight and deter crime,” he said, “but we also have to embrace a community policing model.”

In an earlier interview, Conway said he would like to see more police officers in the ward. He said it was also important to address root causes of crime, including issues related to homelessness, job growth and mental health.

Conway pointed to economic development as another pressing issue in the new ward, saying development should be done “in a thoughtful way, recognizing the infrastructure limitations that exist.”

The future of key economic corridors such as State Street, Michigan Avenue and LaSalle Street, will confront Conway when he assumes the role, as will the impact of mega-projects just outside the ward’s boundaries, including the Thompson Center’s transformation into a Google headquarters in the 42nd Ward and a first-ever Chicago casino in the 27th Ward.

Among Conway’s supporters was Secretary of State Alexi Giannoulias, who said he had known Conway since the two attended high school together at Latin School. “I think he’s a breath of fresh air.”

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