The Barack Obama Foundation announced on Thursday that it is soliciting proposals from institutions and organizations that hope to host the president’s future library.
“The Barack Obama Foundation released a Request for Qualifications (RFQ), soliciting responses from institutions and other parties interested in hosting President Obama's future Presidential Library,” said the group in a statement.
“The Foundation envisions a library that reflects President Obama's values and priorities throughout his career in public service, including expanding economic opportunity, inspiring an ethic of American citizenship, and promoting peace, justice, and dignity throughout the world,” the statement added. “The Foundation is also seeking to build a facility that will cultivate a strong relationship with the surrounding community and be an anchor for economic development.”
The request for qualifications asks interested groups to provide information on how their proposal will “fulfill the guiding principles” of the library. The foundation is looking for information “including site details, transportation access and community information.” Responses must be submitted by June 16, 2014, and the foundation said that they would issue a request for proposals to the “most competitive applicants” this summer ahead of selecting a site in early 2015.
“Our goal is to build a library of which the whole country, and hopefully the whole world, can be proud,” said Martin Nesbitt, a member of the foundation's board and the treasurer for Obama's presidential campaigns.
“Our vision is to create a space that reflects President Obama’s values and priorities throughout his career in public service and serves as force for good in the surrounding community and throughout our world,” he added.
Hawaii, where the president was born, and Illinois, where he first entered political office, are two likely states to host the library, and organizations and officials have already begun lobbying for the prize.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Obama's first chief of staff, has said the city would be a “natural fit” to host Obama's library.
A report in 2013 said that the University of Chicago, where Obama taught as a law professor, was also exploring a bid for the library.
With the backing of Gov. Neil Abercrombie, Hawaii is also pushing for the library. According to reports, the state has set aside land that could be developed for the library and museum.