Community concerned about proposed Niles gun range location - FOX 32 News Chicago

Community concerned about proposed Niles gun range location

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NILES, Ill. (FOX 32 News) - Gun control is certainly a hot button issue, but when a gun range could land near two suburban schools, the controversy gets even hotter.

The city of Niles wants to build a new gun range and gun shop. But the location has a lot of people in the city saying, "not so fast."

City officials want to build a sportsman club an firearms training academy at a 11,800 square foot building that has been empty for about four months. But developers want an additional 2,500 feet for retail space. They say it would be a place for gun storage and police training.

Earlier this month, the planning commission approved the location.

However, many people are upset over the location because of its proximity to the New Hope Academy, Niles West and Niles Central High Schools. Those in opposition of the gun range say they are concerned about the safety of students who attend those schools.

"I am not a big believer in the gun culture that America has become. On the other hand, I understand that people in Niles want a facility to train and buy weapons. So the real dilemma if does the data support that this will be a danger to the schools?" the village president said.

The board will have a change to vote on the location of the gun range at a meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday night. Officials expect many people will be sounding off about the issue before the vote.

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