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February 18, 2016

Chicago Says Museum Battle Has Lucas Eyeing Other Cities

A lawyer for Chicago raised alarms in federal court Wednesday that the city could lose movie mogul George Lucas's planned $300 million museum as a legal fight over the project stretches on, the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times report. Lawyer Brian Sieve said at a hearing that the "uncertainty and delay" has caused museum officials to "consider other cities and other sites that it may relocate to and that may put the entire project in jeopardy."

The Star Wars creator's self-funded Lucas Museum of Narrative Art is slated to be built on a city-leased parcel on the Lake Michigan shore. U.S. District Court Judge John Darrah, who is hearing a challenge to the plan brought by preservation group Friends of the Parks, has barred a start to construction until the case is resolved. The judge said he would rule by April 21 on the city's request that he allow work to begin at the site.

Mr. Sieve did not say what other cities may be pursuing the project. Mr. Lucas chose Chicago in 2014 over competing bids from San Francisco and Los Angeles, and Oakland, Calif., has made overtures for the museum.