Obama on Chicago Library Pick: It's Where I 'Became a Man' Site will indeed be on the city's South Side By Newser Editors and Wire Services Posted May 12, 2015 8:29 AM CDT 102 comments Comments President Obama speaks in the Roosevelt Room of the White House on May 1. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) (Newser) – It's Chicago, as expected: President Obama has decided to build his presidential library on the South Side of the city, where his political career began. The Barack Obama Foundation announced early today that the library would be erected on park land that was proposed for the site by the University of Chicago. The site was selected over bids made by Columbia University in New York, the University of Hawaii, and the University of Illinois at Chicago. "With a library and a foundation on the South Side of Chicago, not only will we be able to encourage and affect change locally, but what we can also do is to attract the world to Chicago." Obama said in a video accompanying the news. "All the strands of my life came together and I really became a man when I moved to Chicago." Both the president and first lady once worked at the university, and they still maintain a house near campus.