Skip to main content

Community-Led Riverfront Projects

The Chicago Community Trust is currently funding ten community-led riverfront projects through their Our Great Rivers grant. These projects, taking place across the Chicago region, align with the Our Great Rivers themes of inviting, living, and productive, and address two or more of the Trust’s funding priorities: sustainable development, economic development, arts and culture, and public health. This series highlights each of the current projects. Get to know more about each project by following the links below (additional links will be added as blog posts are completed). 

Looking for information about the recently awarded second round of Our Great Rivers projects? Find more info here!

Chicago River North Branch
Little Calumet River

The Calumet Connect is a local coalition of community and civic stakeholders focused on improving the health and well-being of communities and residents in Southeast Chicago by shaping the future of the Calumet region based on community vision. Funded by The Trust’s Our Great Rivers grant, the partnership conducted community engagement and research to create the Calumet Connect Databook, highlighting the environmental and public health challenges in the Calumet Industrial Corridor. This initiative (along with years of organizing efforts by many other community groups and activists) helped inform the HUD investigation that found “the city of Chicago is violating the civil rights of its residents by relocating polluting businesses from white communities into Black and Latino areas that already are overwhelmed with environmental and health issues.” The agreement settled from the investigation requires the City of Chicago to take actionable steps to protect neighborhoods in the Calumet region that have been burdened by environmental harm and led to the creation of City’s Environmental Justice Action Plans.

Chicago River South Branch

Calumet River

Des Plaines River