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Layered perspective, data that reveals truth, talks that start conversations, and stories that move people to act. Explore MPC’s archive below.

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Resource name Category File type Date posted
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PDF (5.43 MB)
Oct 27, 2023
Building on our work with the State of Illinois' Future of Work Taskforce, MPC and the Latino Policy Forum collaborated to release a policy brief with recommendations for how the State of Illinois can ensure a bright future for Latino workers. 

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Oct 27, 2023
This guide is written for anyone who has a stake in the improvement of neighborhoods. It also is for people who will be managing and coordinating a Placemaking process, whether for a small corner, community center, park, street, or an entire neighborhood. It describes the process and steps for developing a Placemaking program and engaging citizens from the beginning of the project through its implementation—while also bringing in public, professional and technical resources in a supportive and creative way.

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Jan 2, 2000
Tax Reform Issue Brief.

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary: Since transportation capital is largely funded at the state level, the city needs to be an advocate for sufficient, sustainable funding in the Illinois General Assembly, especially for transit. Plain and simple: investing in transit is good for our economy and results in economic growth. Chicago-region studies show that for every dollar invested in transit yields between $1.21-$3 in economic returns, and has significant benefits to residents, employers and communities including more jobs, less traffic, higher property values, and improved air quality to name a few. Currently, 31 percent of the Regional Transportation Authority’s transit system is beyond its…

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Jun 2, 2004
CHALLENGES According to the 2000 census, the six-county Chicago region grew by 11 percent in population and 16 percent in jobs in the last decade, but lost more than 28,000 apartments.   Illinois experienced a similar discrepancy: population increased by nearly nine percent, jobs by nearly 14 percent, but again the rental housing stock shrunk by two percent. Despite local and state efforts to overcome segregation and invest in a competitive workforce, these trends are particularly severe in high job-growth areas and revitalizing neighborhoods, where homeownership is out of reach for entry-level workers. For example, according to a 2003 study…

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Oct 27, 2023
In an effort to improve the parking and transportation conditions in the area to better support local businesses and residents, the Wicker Park Bucktown Special Services Area #33 partnered with CMAP and the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) to review existing conditions and provide strategic recommendations for parking management. Parking management can benefit everyone — even people who don’t drive. Good parking management balances the needs of drivers, businesses, and their customers with overall transportation efficiency and community impact.

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Oct 27, 2023
Through the Drinking Water 1-2-3 Technical Assistance program, MPC coordinated expert assistance to help communities tackle their most pressing water challenges. In Sauk Village, MPC worked with Village staff and a contract engineer to conduct a water audit utilizing the American Water Works Association’s M36 methodology. The report identified rates of real and apparent losses in the Village's water system and recommended a number of steps which can be taken by Sauk Village. For more information, visit metroplanning.org/academy.  

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Oct 27, 2023
During a time of historic economic change, the strength of the Chicagoland region – or any region across the nation, for that matter -- depends on smart federal investment strategies.  As more and more communities need resources to fund outdated infrastructure, deal with the foreclosure crisis, retrain workers, and respond to climate change, it’s no longer acceptable to dole out funding based on politically contrived formulas. Our public resources need to be directed where they will have the greatest benefit and most significant return, as well as reward innovation and collaboration. Federal investments should put communities on a clear path…

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Jan 4, 1998
This paper describes and evaluates reforms which simulate the impact of the new state aid programs using measures of the local property tax base and pupil counts from the 1996–97 school year.

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Jan 11, 1998
Issue Brief No.2

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Oct 27, 2023
Listen to this recording of the Oct. 13, 2009, half-day forum, co-facilitated by Openlands and Metroplanning Planning Council, which examined recommendations for sustainable water supply planning. The event featured panel discussions on four topics paramount to Illinois' water future: reinventing infrastructure investment, linking land use planning and water supply analysis, spurring demand management solutions, and optimizing Illinois' Lake Michigan diversion.The "Before the Wells Run Dry" forum was hosted by Drinker Biddle Gardner Carton and graciously sponsored by Illinois American Water and Christopher B. Burke Engineering.

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Oct 27, 2023
Listen to this roundtable event, recorded Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2011, at which MPC released Bus Rapid Transit: Chicago's New Route to Opportunity, a vision for a 10-route Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) network in Chicago that is feasible, best supports existing neighborhood assets, and fills accessibility gaps in the current transit network.

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May 28, 2024


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PDF (0.13 MB)
Feb 2, 2005
Since the onset of the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) Plan for Transformation in 1999, radical changes have occurred, both inside and outside the agency. Internally, under new leadership, the CHA has transformed itself from a 2,600-person organization in charge of multiple objectives well beyond the provision of housing (such as policing, social service delivery, and property management) to a 500-person agency whose fundamental role is as an “asset manager.” Tasks now are assigned to professional private contractors (developers, managers, nonprofit organizations, etc.) or handled by appropriate public partners (city departments and sister agencies). Externally, during this same period, the concept…

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Oct 27, 2023
A significant goal of the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) Plan for Transformation is to create job opportunities and promote self-sufficiency for families living in public housing.

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Jan 11, 2005
CHA Plan for Transformation Update

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Jan 8, 2006
This MPC Update on the Chicago Housing Authority's Plan for Transformation delves into strategies for successfully involving residents in Chicago's new mixed-income communities.

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Jan 12, 2006
This MPC update on the Chicago Housing Authority Plan for Transformation explored the status of workforce development for residents.

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PDF (1.64 MB)
Oct 27, 2023
Examined the relationship between development practices and water quality and quantity in a 12-county northeastern Illinois region.

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PDF (3.27 MB)
Oct 27, 2023
The Chicago region has a rich network of transportation options, yet we waste billions of dollars and countless hours each year in traffic congestion. Although we continue to invest in rebuilding and expanding our transportation system, we cannot build our way out of congestion. We must make the most efficient use of our existing network: We need transportation demand management (TDM).

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Jan 1, 1998
Chicago's vacant and tax-delinquent land acquisition procedures can be improved to increase efficiency, effectiveness, and accelerate the revitalization of many neighborhoods.

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Oct 27, 2023
Water affordability is a growing concern. Over the past decade, the average residential water rate went up by almost 80% in northeastern Illinois, and many households will soon find their water bills unaffordable if water rates continue to rise at the expected pace. The City of Chicago Water Affordability Analysis from Elevate and Metropolitan Planning Council shows the state of water affordability in Chicago by using water billing data from Chicago’s residential water customers. The study found that water burden – the percentage of a household’s income that goes toward paying water bills – in Chicago is significant. Chicago’s lowest…

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Oct 27, 2023
Safe streets are some of our most valuable public spaces.  In March, MPC and CDOT co-hosted Designing for Complete Streets, a workshop for CDOT and IDOT employess that discussed ways to design streets that are safe for all forms of traffic.  This fact sheet describes the components of a Complete Street and illustrates how Complete Streets policies are spreading across the country. 

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary Chicago needs inclusive, comprehensive planning efforts across the city. The following recommendations are designed to improve the structure and capacity of DPD so that there is a focus on comprehensive planning, community engagement, and project implementation in neighborhoods across the city. This will require centralizing some of the current functions that Aldermen are actively engaged in, like zoning, as well as reorganizing the department and providing additional staff resources. Note: Many of these ideas are aligned with and adapted from the Shriver Center’s report “A City Fragmented.” Comprehensive Plan for Chicago The City does not have a comprehensive plan…

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Oct 27, 2023
The Comprehensive Regional Planning Fund (CRPF) is a dedicated source of funding for effective comprehensive planning throughout Illinois. It supports regional planning in rural and metropolitan areas of state through federally designated Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) such as the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning.

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Jan 12, 2000
By Dr. John Augenblick and Mr. Justin Silverstein OVERVIEW In September 2000, Augenblick and Myers, Inc. entered into a contract with the Metropolitan Planning Council to conduct a study of the cost of an adequate education in Illinois public schools and the development of an adjustment to that cost to reflect the added costs associated with serving students from low-income families. The study was conducted to provide the Network 21: Quality Schools and Stronger Communities Coalition with recommendations on an adequate foundation level to ensure that the foundation level is sufficient to provide a quality education for every student in…

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Jan 6, 1995
The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) recently released a report as a product of its Regional Cooperation Initiative.

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Oct 27, 2023
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Highlights of leadership forums sponsored by The Urban Land Institute and the Campaign for Sensible Growth.

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Jan 8, 2024


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Jan 8, 2024


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Feb 10, 2024


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Feb 10, 2024


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Jan 8, 2024


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Jan 8, 2024


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PDF (0.08 MB)
Oct 27, 2023
Despite Chicago’s Sanctuary City status, we’re losing immigrants. It’s a threat to our communities and economy that we can no longer ignore

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PDF (4.11 MB)
Jul 8, 2019
Report from the Institute for Housing Studies at DePaul University regarding anti-displacement strategies in East Garfield Park

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PDF (1.74 MB)
Oct 27, 2023
Authors: Michael Wieczorek, King Harris Summer InternJuan Sebastian Arias, Manager, Housing & Community Development Rent control (rent stabilization) has many moving parts. This slideshow breaks down what rent stabilization is teaching us about our communities.

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Jan 6, 1996
MPC's co-sponsoring Living With Growth project which uses community participation to manage growth at the local level.

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Jan 4, 2002
In this report, Network 21: Quality Schools and Stronger Communities takes a critical look at technology use in Illinois schools, and makes recommendations for how to improve students' and teachers' skills.

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Sep 3, 2012
When the Bronzeville Alliance, a coalition of local community organizations, invited the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) to help staff and provide recommendations to its Bronzeville Retail Initiative, MPC jumped at the opportunity to support coordinated retail planning, retention, and recruitment efforts in this community. This work advances and complements Reconnecting Neighborhoods, a partnership between the City of Chicago, Regional Transportation Authority, the consulting firm HNTB, and MPC’s Community Building Initiative, to forward retail, transit and pedestrian improvements around the Plan for Transformation in the Chicago’s Mid-South, Near West, and Near North neighborhoods.  Charged with guiding the Bronzeville Alliance toward its…

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Oct 27, 2023
Ald. Mary Ann Smith (48th Ward), Ald. Helen Shiller (46th Ward), and Uptown United reached out to MPC and the Urban Land Institute-Chicago (ULI) to conduct a two-day ULI Technical Assistance Panel for the Argyle District, a pan-Asian retail strip on Chicago's North Side. The panel brought together experts in the fields of business and community development, marketing, real estate development, planning, and design. The panel also included volunteers with relevant cultural knowledge of the community to ensure the recommendations were grounded and realistic, given the districts unique ethnic makeup. The panel met in November 2008 to explore marketing, leadership…

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Oct 27, 2023
An Assessment of Northeastern Illinois’ Regional Development Structures and Tools The Metropolitan Planning Council’s vision for an economically competitive, environmentally sustainable and socially equitable Chicago region requires smarter prioritization of projects and coordinated execution. Many of the structures (i.e. entities) and tools (e.g. bonding, taxing, eminent domain) necessary to implement coordinated and prioritized investments already exist in the Chicago region. If deployed differently, these existing structures and tools would result in more efficient and effective implementation of the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning’s GO TO 2040, World Business Chicago’s economic plan and other regional blueprints. Doing so will require identification and evaluation…

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC's EAH Guidebook is a compendium of our experience in promoting EAH in Chicago and around the nation since 2001. It answers frequently asked questions from employers about why they might offer EAH and how to best use the financial incentives available. It also offers a case study of the University of Chicago's success with EAH. Read the EAH Guidebook.

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Jan 11, 2000
This document is intended as a primer for discussion about school finance issues in Illinois. The purpose is to clearly analyze how schools are funded, including a discussion of state and local contributions to education costs.

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Oct 27, 2023
Through the Drinking Water 1-2-3 Technical Assistance program, MPC coordinated expert assistance to help communities tackle their most pressing water challenges. Together with the Center for Neighborhood Technology, MPC worked with the south suburban Village of Hazel Crest to identify the probable location of lead service lines which connect a property to a utility’s water main. This effort also created a targeted replacement plan for the Village to remove all lead service lines over time, eliminating a potential public health threat. A suite of public education materials — including content for the Village’s website, newsletter, public access TV channel, and…

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Oct 27, 2023
The employer-assisted housing (EAH) initiative, undertaken by the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) in collaboration with nonprofit Regional Employer-assisted Collaboration for Housing (REACH) partners and regional employers, picked up great momentum in 2002.  Started in 2000, a pilot program at one company began assisting employees with homeownership.  In 2001, five new employers signed on to develop EAH programs.  The initiative also received broader recognition, including new incentives from the state of Illinois and awards from outside institutions.[2] 1 36 Joseph Corporation In 2002, 15 employees bought homes through EAH initiatives with MPC and REACH partners.  All were first-time homebuyers, with incomes…

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An MPC Housing Resource
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Feb 10, 2002
The employer-assisted housing (EAH) initiative undertaken by the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) in collaboration with nonprofit housing organizations and regional employers made strides forward during the first half of 2002.  Started in 2000, a model program provided homes for 36 St. Charles-based System Sensor employees.  In 2001, five new employers signed on to develop EAH initiatives.  The initiative also received broader recognition, including new incentives from the state of Illinois and awards from outside institutions.  During the first half of 2002, three new employers signed on, and the new programs announced in 2001 got off the ground and have begun…

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Oct 27, 2023
The mid-year report will be updated shortly with new year-end data, including information on more successful homebuyers and more employer sign-ons. The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) and its partners took employer-assisted housing (EAH) efforts in new directions in 2004, continuing programs with the nonprofit Regional Employer-Assisted Collaboration for Housing (REACH) and employers in the six-county Chicago region, building a new partnership with the Statewide Housing Action Coalition (SHAC), laying the infrastructure for EAH to support the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) Plan for Transformation, and strengthening the relationship with State of Illinois departments and agencies. EAH Expands Statewide In 2003, MPC…

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC's employer-assisted housing activities and successes in 2005. REACH Illinois 2005 Accomplishments In 2005, employer-assisted housing initiatives in Illinois took great strides forward, with the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) and its REACH partners expanding efforts in the Chicago region, and Housing Action Illinois (formerly Statewide Housing Action Coalition) and new REACH partners gearing up statewide. REACH Illinois not only supports bottom-line savings for employers investing in workforce housing, but it improves employees’ lives and helps open doors to housing solutions. Following is a summary of the year’s successes: Housing America 's Workforce Act of 2005 was introduced into the U.S.…

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Jan 1, 2009
Employer-assisted housing (EAH) helps employees live near work through down payment or rental assistance, or other types of incentives. Read this brochure t find out how your company can benefit from employer-assisted housing.

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Sep 3, 2010
The University of Chicago employer-assisted housing (EAH) program provides downpayment assistance and access to homebuyer education to help employees live near work. From 2003 to 2009, 485 employees received credit counseling and homebuyer education from the nonprofit Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago, and 193 bought homes in nearby communities. The 193 homebuyers now overwhelmingly enjoy shorter commutes — by an average of more than 9 miles. The University of Chicago is one of the 50 active employers throughout Illinois offering employerassisted housing benefits to their workers through the MPC-designed EAH program.

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Jan 4, 2002
The employer-assisted housing (EAH) initiative undertaken by the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) in collaboration with nonprofit housing organizations and regional employers had a banner year in 2001.  Since early in 2000, the first model program has been providing homes for St. Charles-based System Sensor employees.  In 2001, five new partners signed on to develop employer-assisted housing initiatives and the effort received broader recognition, including new incentives from the state of Illinois and awards from outside organizations. New Partners As System Sensor and the Joseph Corporation housing counseling agency continue their success in helping employees buy homes closer to work, five…

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Oct 27, 2023
Serious housing challenges abound throughout metropolitan Chicago, and vary from town to town. In some areas, the demand for affordable housing is greater than the supply. In others, economic development is necessary to revitalize communities and draw potential homeowners to the quality housing available. The future economic health of the region and our local communities is dependent on maintaining a stable and competitive workforce for our businesses and industries, which means we need a diverse range of housing options located near jobs and transportation/transit. In all types of communities, a proven tool is employer-assisted housing (EAH).

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Oct 27, 2023
The employer-assisted housing (EAH) initiative, undertaken by the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) in collaboration with nonprofit Regional Employer-Assisted Collaboration for Housing (REACH) partners and regional employers, has continued gathering momentum in the first half of 2003. Started in 2000, a pilot program at one company began assisting employees with home ownership. In 2001, five more employers signed on to develop EAH programs. The initiative also received broad recognition, including new incentives from the State of Illinois and awards from outside institutions.1 In 2002, six additional employers publicly announced their commitment to this program, and in the first half of 2003…

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An MPC Housing Resource
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Oct 27, 2023
This report recommends coordinated planning and implementation strategies that will capitalize on the work of the pilot regional planning groups, integrate regional plans with state and local practices, and ensure the long-term sustainability and efficient use of our finite, fragile water resources. A bottom-up approach supported by local management of water supplies is necessary to ensure state policies, programs and investments support the regional planning process, and coincide with local support of data-rich and stakeholder-driven regional water supply plans. The Metropolitan Planning Council and Openlands are grateful to the Joyce Foundation and Lumpkin Family Foundation, whose support made this report…

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Jan 6, 2001
The widespread shortage of affordable housing is prompting some local governments to rethink conventional zoning in order to expand the variety and availability of their housing stock. One innovative tool is inclusionary zoning. This enables local governments to use their zoning powers to foster development of affordable housing by requiring developers to include affordable options when they build market-rate housing.

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Jan 6, 2000
Telecommunications & Technology Issue Brief No.2

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Oct 27, 2023
We're in the middle of a renaissance of sorts along Chicago's waterways. The catch? Most people aren't familiar with the ground-breaking, community-centered, nationally-significant work that's been happening in recent years. That's why MPC launched an interactive story map, Explore Our Great Rivers, in August 2021. This map highlights community activation projects funded through The Chicago Community Trust’s Our Great Rivers grant. The focus of these projects include community planning, research, advocacy, arts and culture, and more. In-depth stories about each project can be found on MPC's blog. Here's a peek at the interactive map: Exploring Our Great Rivers An event…

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Jan 2, 2021
From the outset, it's clear that the Biden Administration will approach urban policy and planning with a different lens than its predecessor. This Jan. 29, 2021, event featured the leaders of SPUR of the Bay Area, the Metropolitan Planning Council of Chicago, and Regional Plan Association of the New York City-New Jersey-Connecticut region, discussing what the next federal administration may mean for regional planning, research, and policy change.  Speakers: Alicia John-Baptiste, President & CEO, SPUR MarySue Barrett, President, Metropolitan Planning Council Tom Wright, President, Regional Plan Association Moderator:  Calvin Gladney, President & CEO, Smart Growth America  Excerpts from the event:…

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Oct 27, 2023
Far too often, plans sit idle on a shelf, never to be seen again. This is not the case for the rivers in Chicago, where new murals have been erected, interactive museums launched, and transformative streetscapes built. Join MPC for a lunch-hour celebration as we launch our interactive Rivers Storymap Project: a unique, interactive tool that highlights grassroots-scale activation. We’ll hear behind-the-scenes information from some of the local change-makers and community advocates about the transformative efforts becoming reality along Chicago’s rivers. Panelists:  Chloe Gurin-Sands (Manger of Equity & Planning, Metropolitan Planning Council) Alex Perez (Advocacy Manager, Active Transportation Alliance) Carson Poole (Organizer, The…

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Feb 9, 2021
In 2020, Daylight and MPC explored the potential untapped economies of scale to be gained in a shared service arrangement for maintaining green stormwater infrastructure across municipalities in the Calumet region. This research supports the work of our Calumet Stormwater Collaborative partner organization, OAI, Inc., which is leading a pilot project with the goal of directly addressing the need for effective and efficient maintenance of green infrastructure while also helping to address other community needs. The report includes sample shared service agreement language and reference agreements and contracts.

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Oct 27, 2023
The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) shapes policies and supports direct investments in an economically competitive, socially equitable, and environmentally sustainable Chicagoland region. Implementing this vision requires public investment and development policies spanning multiple agencies and sources that are based on the following proven principles. MPC and its partners have outlined three principles that should guide public investment, prioritized against criteria and reflective of community goals identifi ed through comprehensive local and regional plans.

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Feb 9, 2020
This event is part two of our Understanding the impact of COVID-19 on Chicagoland communities series. COVID-19 has been a traumatic and revealing experience for everyone, but in drastically different ways from one community to another. Tax policy has a lot to do with that. Communities dependent on sales and other consumption taxes have seen catastrophic results very quickly. Communities dependent on property taxes have been buffered… for now. Many places fall somewhere in between. This event will feature experts in municipal finance and governance, examining both near-term and longer-term consequences of the ongoing pandemic, and looking ahead to what shifts are…

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Oct 1, 2001
RRMA technical report and modeling exercise that presents likely vacancy rates and rental variation for 2004 and 2009

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An MPC Housing Resource
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Oct 27, 2023
Recently, many planning professionals and advocates have had to come to grips with how their work within the built environment can help to perpetuate institutional racism and injustice. With this new revelation, it’s more important than ever to take an active role in dismantling systems that do not protect society’s most vulnerable communities. This workshop with MUSE Community + Design pinpoints actions for how self-identified allies can leverage their power and privilege to create meaningful advancements towards diversity, equity, and inclusion within their organizations.

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Oct 27, 2023
A Coordinated Agenda for the 2003 Federal Transportation Debate

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Oct 27, 2023
Getting Wired Workshop Reports.

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Jan 10, 1999
Getting Wired Workshop Reports.

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Jan 11, 2016
Read Glass Half Full >> We are lucky: In northeastern Illinois, we generally enjoy an ample amount of water thanks to our location along the shores of a Great Lake. But that good fortune has lulled us into complacency, and our drinking water systems have been neglected. Our proverbial glass is half empty. This is the Metropolitan Planning Council’s bid to raise awareness, and our call to action on addressing water supply issues in our region. We are ready to form stronger partnerships with elected officials, utility managers and operators, funders, private organizations, nonprofits and others to advance a 10-point…

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary The city needs to think and act more like the regional partner it is. Chicago’s pursuit of increased transit funding, better transit performance, sustainable water management and other critical issues suffer from Chicago’s reluctance to partner with other regional actors. By reengaging in collaborative efforts locally and regionally—such as the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus—Chicago stands to benefit. Regional Re-engagement Chicago has withdrawn from meaningful, collaborative engagement with neighboring suburbs, but also with likeminded cities throughout the Great Lakes. Despite being a founding member of the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus and the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative, Chicago has disengaged…

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May 11, 2010
On Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2010, MPC and The Times Media Company launched the Gary Region and Investment Project (GRIP), in Gary, Ind. This guide provided participants at the event with information about GRIP, including major a detailed list of projects in progress that can revitalize Gary and Northwest Indiana.

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Oct 27, 2023
This report summarizes the first phase of the Gary and Region Investment Project, highlighting the notable speakers and participant feedback from the October 27, 2010 GRIP the Future launch event and the results from the community survey conducted both at the event and broadly through GRIP partners and media outlets throughout Northwest Indiana.

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Oct 27, 2023
Development near transit helped double Chicago's downtown population between 2000 and 2010—even as the city as a whole lost population. By building new opportunities for people of all incomes to live, work and shop near transit in neighborhoods across the city, we can grow Chicago and give more Chicagoans excellent access to high-quality schools, jobs, retail and parks. Explore the vision and calculate the benefits.

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Aug 12, 2022
The Metropolitan Planning Council convened a Historical Reckoning Working Group to explore historical acknowledgement and make recommendations to the City on how to begin a city-led process of historical acknowledgement and reckoning through the We Will Chicago citywide planning process. This report summarizes the process the Historical Reckoning Working Group used, the recommendations made for We Will Chicago, ideas for a broader historical reckoning process, and a timeline of harms, resistance, and solidarity.

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Oct 27, 2023
In the 1930s, far too many Chicagoans lived in overcrowded, rat-infested, ramshackle tenement slums. Poised for change, in 1934, a group of concerned citizens founded the Metropolitan Housing Council (MHC). They wasted no time in advancing their main objective: improving the city's housing stock by enforcing standards, collecting statistics, and promoting neighborhood planning. Even then, the Council wasn't above a attention-grabbing stunt: at the 1934 Century of Progress World's Fair in Chicago, MHC transformed a Chicago shack into a "Cape Cod cottage" in 24 hours, proving it was possible to change the city's slums. By decade's end, they had made…

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MPC History of Progress
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Jan 3, 2012
Up to $6,000 for home energy improvements Many employers in metropolitan Chicago have experienced the benefits of investing in employer-assisted housing (EAH), through which they assist their employees to buy or rent homes near work. Empllyer benefits include improved company morale, increased productivity, and reduced turnover - as well as related cost savings and potential tax credits. The region's new home renovation intiative builds on EAH by allowing employers to help their employees make energy-efficient and cost-saving home improvements. An employer's contribution up to $3,000 can be matched, to leverage a total of $6,000 for an employee.

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Jan 7, 2015
Read Home Grown » These case studies are part of the Homes for a Changing Region Toolkit, a guide for municipalities to create comprehensive housing plans. Each case study covers a housing policy, development, program, or financing strategy; how it works; why it was successful; and how it was funded. Case studies address a range of community housing issues, from affordability to accessibility and from property management to demolition.

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Sep 4, 2010
Best Practices from the Metropolitan Chicago Region This collection—compiled by the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus, Chicago Metropolis 2020, and Metropolitan Planning Council—describes a number of housing “best practices” implemented by local governments around the Chicago metropolitan region. The intent is to show local policymakers and practitioners how their peers are addressing housing issues, and spark ideas for replicating or improving upon these approaches to address their own local housing challenges. This collection demonstrates that exciting, innovative, local efforts are contributing to a quality, diverse housing stock that meets the needs of a variety of residents in our region. Summaries new for 2010 Housing Policy and GovernanceCity of…

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Jan 9, 2005
The initial 2005 report, by Chicago Metropolis 2020 and the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus, that launched the Homes for a Changing Region series.

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Oct 27, 2023
Homes for a Changing Region, led by the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus and Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, is identifying specific, local, regional and state strategies to address imbalances in northeastern Illinois' housing stock. MPC is supporting the evolution of Homes for a Changing Region by encouraging neighboring communities to work together to develop interjurisdictional solutions to housing challenges and by using transparent community engagement strategies to develop these solutions. This sixth Homes report focuses on work with five communities together in the West Cook subregion: Bellwood, Berwyn, Forest Park, Maywood, and Oak Park.

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Oct 27, 2023
Homes for a Changing Region, led by the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus and Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, is identifying specific, local, regional and state strategies to address imbalances in northeastern Illinois' housing stock. MPC is supporting the evolution of Homes for a Changing Region by encouraging neighboring communities to work together to develop interjurisdictional solutions to housing challenges and by using transparent community engagement strategies to develop these solutions. This fifth Homes report focuses on work with four communities together in one subregion: Hazel Crest, Lansing, Olympia Fields and Park Forest.

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Jan 1, 2013
The seventh report in the Homes for a Changing Region series, with plans for Arlington Heights, Buffalo Grove, Mount Prospect, Palatine and Rolling Meadows.

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Jan 11, 2007
The second report in the Homes for a Changing Region series, with plans for Aurora, Libertyville and Oak Forest.

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Jan 10, 2009
The fourth Homes for a Changing Region report, with plans for Blue Island, Plainfield and Woodstock.

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Jan 11, 2008
The third Homes for a Changing Region report, featuring plans for Gurnee, Montgomery and Northlake.

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Jan 2, 2008
Housing 1-2-3 is a step-by-step guidebook designed to make the complex issues of planning, developing, preserving, and managing housing more understandable for municipalities and real estate professionals. The housing market expands and contracts, but the need for a diverse housing stock remains constant. Housing is one of the most basic needs in our society. A balanced housing strategy supports a wide range of quality options for people of every age, household composition, race, or income level. However, all too often, communities lack housing diversity. Beyond the question of equity, a lack of housing options has significant economic impacts – workers…

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Jan 2, 2001
Housing Trends and the Geography of Race, Poverty, and Neighborhood Renewal is one of seven technical reports of the Regional Rental Market Analysis (RRMA), a broad examination of metropolitan Chicago’s residential rental market. The RRMA contains a wide range of information necessary to craft innovative policies, programs, and investment strategies to address the future of the region’s housing market. The Metropolitan Planning Council, serving as project manager, contracted with the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) to undertake this research with the Washington, DC-based Urban Institute and the local Applied Real Estate Analysis. Appendix

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC hosted the virtual event, Activated Rivers, Stronger Communities: Stories from our region’s waterways, on May 28, 2020. This event highlighted the success and challenges of community groups in creating riverfront projects along the Chicago River South Branch, Calumet River and Des Plaines River. This event had more than 90 attendees and included a poll, prior to the hearing from the panelists and speakers. The poll included questions about whether attendees use their rivers and how they like to enjoy them. Each questions allowed participants to select more than one answer. The poll received 51 responses. The following pages include…

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Oct 27, 2023
Watch this news segment from WGN-TV Channel 9 on MPC's congestion pricing report, which aired July 14, 2010.

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Oct 27, 2023
"Water? That’s not a problem. We live on the Great Lakes." Despite the region’s seemingly unlimited availability of water highly visible Lake Michigan, rivers and streams, the Midwest faces severe water problems. There is flooding, deteriorating quality of its streams and rivers, depletion of underground water resources, and potential drinking water shortages—as well as the need for land to accommodate new housing and economic development. This ideas@work deals with the dual challenges of maintaining northeastern Illinois’ water quality and quantity, and offers recommendations for action by residents, businesses and governments.

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Oct 27, 2023
Water and land use are inter-related. Communities cannot develop without sources of drinkable water. Conversely, poorly planned development is often a major cause of water pollution, can result in water shortages, and can be a major factor in both local and regional flooding. In response, some communities have turned to watershed planning to encourage sustainable growth and protect their water resources. This ideas@work provides an overview of watershed planning and how it can be a tool to guide land use decisions and safeguard our water supplies.

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Oct 27, 2023
The Illinois Affordable Housing Tax Credit Program (IAHTC), which provides a 50 cent credit on state income tax liability for every $1 invested in an employer-assisted housing (EAH) program — is an effective tool to engage employers in housing solutions and increase homeownership among working families. Renewing the tax credit demonstrates that the State of Illinois is committed to partnering with the private sector to help our workforce live near work.

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC has been working with national, state and local REALTORS® Associations to create a seamless process that ensures home buyers working with REALTORS® can receive consistent, helpful information about employer-assisted housing (EAH). Download this fact sheet, which explains how REALTORS® can play a role in connecting home buyers to EAH programs. The fact sheet also promotes a continuing education course for REALTORS® focused on EAH, which will be available in Illinois in 2011. Sponsored by the National and Illinois Associations of REALTORS®, the class will feature information about Illinois-specific EAH partnerships and incentives for employers.

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Jan 25, 2024


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Jul 5, 2013
Download infographics from report (EPS and PNG formats, 2.4MB) The Chicago area is privileged to be situated on the shores of Lake Michigan, the third largest of the Great Lakes, which altogether account for 20 percent of the world’s readily available freshwater. Lake Michigan supports a unique ecosystem, provides a breathtaking natural contrast to Chicago’s skyline and the many communities lining its shores, and offers a critical asset—freshwater—that our residents and businesses rely upon to grow and prosper. However, the presence of this vast Lake too often lends the illusion that our water is limitless. In fact, both the water…

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Oct 27, 2023
Highway and RTA Transit Funding Year 3 Progress Report

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Mar 10, 2019
Raj Chetty's presentation at MPC's 2019 Annual Luncheon

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Oct 27, 2023
On March 26, 2010, MPC joined representatives from the Center for Housing Policy, Atlanta Neighborhood Development Partnership, Inc. and  ULI Minnesota in Live at the Forum to discuss recent listening sessions MPC and the Center convened in Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn., and Atlanta, Ga..  These discussions focused on the challenges and opportunities related  to coordinating housing and transportation investments. This document summarizes best practices and key challenges raised by participants and summarizes policy advances that have begun addressing those issues, including the federal Sustainable Communities Partnership. This piece also highlights upcoming opportunities, including the Livable Communities Act and upcoming federal transportation authorization. Audio from the conference…

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Oct 27, 2023
With the goal of revitalizing a swath of Cermak Road in into an area that supports the creative industries, the Chicago Dept. of Cultural Affairs, Dept. of Planning and Development, and Ald. Daniel Solis (25th Ward) asked the Urban Land Institute-Chicago and Campaign for Sensible Growth to convene a Technical Assistance Panel of volunteer real estate development experts, urban planning and design professionals, and community development leaders. Ths report outlines their recommendations.

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Apr 6, 2015
For more than 80 years, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has made the Chicago region a better place to live and work by partnering with businesses, communities and governments to address the area's toughest planning and development challenges. MPC works to solve today's urgent problems while consistently thinking ahead to prepare the region for the needs of tomorrow.

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Oct 27, 2023
Jeff Walk, Director of Science for the Nature Conservancy in Illinois, discusses the relationship between wetlands and open space protection and managing water supplies.  This was recorded after the Metropolitan Planning Council and Openlands' Jan. 26, 2011 roundtable Letting it All Soak In: Nature's Role in Protecting Water Resources.

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Oct 27, 2023
For more info: https://metroplanning.org/stormwater or tweet @MPCJosh

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Aug 9, 2020
Cook County Jail was an early U.S. hotspot for COVID-19. Since then, there have been efforts to control the spread among incarcerated and returning citizens. As other counties are exploring creative housing solutions during this time, Cook County and Chicago have the opportunity to improve the health and safety and to keep this vulnerable population adequately housed.  This event was co-hosted by Metropolitan Planning Council and Enterprise Community Partners. Speakers: Floyd Stafford, Heartland Alliance [moderator] Destiny Carter, Chicago Coalition for the Homeless Lissette Casteneda, LUCHA Sharone Mitchell Jr., Illinois Justice Project

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Oct 27, 2023
A short overview of a kayak trip on the Chicago River from Ping Tom Park in Chinatown to the Loop and back.

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Oct 27, 2023
Pulling over to let a barge pass safely while kayaking on the Chicago River

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC believes a healthy, prosperous region— and its core city—is competitive, equitable and sustainable. In the fall of 2010, we compiled a list of economic development, infrastructure and housing-related challenges the next mayor will face in achieving this goal. The following briefing book provides references and resources to help all of the mayoral candidates develop positions and policies around these issues. We have broken them down to two categories: the Keepers are current programs and initiatives led by the City of Chicago that should continue or be expanded; the Seekers are initiatives, programs and activities that need nurturing and increased…

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Oct 27, 2023
Unprecedented actions have been taken at the federal, state and local levels to blunt the crisis' impact, from an eviction moratorium to emergency cash assistance. Still, more must be done. This was the first discussion of an ongoing series exploring an equitable response and recovery to the pandemic. HOSTS Juan Sebastian Arias (Metropolitan Planning Council) Miriam Zuk (Enterprise Community Partners) PANELISTS Mark Swartz (Lawyers Committee for Better Housing) Stacey Young (Preservation Compact/Community Investment Corporation) Jawanza Malone (Lift the Ban Coalition) Daniel Kay Hertz (Chicago Department of Housing)

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Jan 7, 2020
Immigrants and undocumented residents are at heightened risk of being impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and are being left out of many solutions. Long considered a gateway metropolis, the Chicago region is home to over 1.5 million immigrants who today make up nearly 20% of the population. The recent surge in coronavirus cases in Latinx communities lays bare the heightened vulnerability of immigrant communities, due in part to precarious or unsafe work environments for essential workers and overcrowded housing related to the affordability crisis, making it hard for many to stay-at-home.  As our city faces health, economic, and racial challenges…

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Jan 4, 2000
Regional Rental Market Analysis, an unprecedented analysis, measured 1999 rent and vacancy rates within each of the six metropolitan Chicago counties and provided forecast levels through 2004 and 2009. The analysis showed the overall vacancy rate in the region was an extremely low 4.2 percent. Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis- Development of Rental Housing- Increasing Access to the Rental Market through Housing Choice Vouchers- A Closer Look at the Jobs-Housing MismatchRegional Rental Market Analysis by geography - Chicago - North Side- Chicago - South Side- Chicago - West Side- Dupage County- Kane County- Lake County- McHenry County- North…

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Oct 27, 2023
Frank Trilla of King Car Wash explains the sustainable initiatives of his operation.

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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023
On Sept. 23, 2013, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago celebrated the final detonation in the quarry that will become Thorton Reservoir, part of the district's massive Tunnel and Reservoir Plan.

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC partnered with the Latino Policy Forum and UIC's Great Cities Institute for an in-depth study of Latino population trends that have occurred in the region over the past decade. She report sheds more light on what has been a trend in the Chicago region for the past several decades--that is, the Latino population has been growing faster than any group, that growth is higher in the suburbs, and without Latinos, the region would be losing population. The full report is available for download here.

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Dec 11, 2003
In 1999, the Metropolitan Planning Council conducted research for the City of Chicago on the zoning rewrite process in 50 major U.S. cities. Chicago was about to embark on a daunting and historic effort to rewrite its zoning code and planned to use MPC’s research to inform its process. The purpose of the research effort was to ascertain how other cities approached zoning reform. Lay of the Land: A National Survey of Zoning Reform was published by MPC in September 1999. It highlighted zoning processes in 10 of the 50 cities: Boston; Detroit; Milwaukee; Minneapolis; New York; Pittsburgh; San Diego; San…

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Oct 27, 2023
Exposure to lead can have devastating health consequences. Lead in drinking water poses a significant, complicated public health concern for people today. The safest solution—removal of lead pipes, fixtures and solder—requires extensive planning, capital investment, staff capacity and time. That daunting list can discourage action. Yet, lead must be addressed. There are many immediate actions a community can take, even as it begins planning for a more systemic, long-term solution. Whether or not your community has lead service lines, all municipal leaders can take action today to ensure the safety of residents.

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Oct 27, 2023
This press conference took place on May 13, 2021, at 10 a.m. For more information, read the media release. For additional information about lead service line replacement, visit our Water Supply Management page. Sign Natural Resources Defense Council's Action Alert today to let your state lawmakers know that with federal support, there's no better time than now to #ENDleadservicelines and get rid of toxic drinking water in Illinois. 

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Oct 27, 2023
Learn more at metroplanning.org/leadinourwater

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Oct 27, 2023
The PowerPoint for this event is available as a PDF.  This event was part of Chicago Water Week.  Lead poisoning is a serious public health problem that is even more prevalent in Black and Brown communities. In Illinois, our drinking water is threatened by at least 686,000 service lines—some 400,000 in Chicago alone—made of lead and likely many more, all piping potentially dangerous drinking water into homes and other properties every day. Clean, safe, affordable water should be a given but it’s not—and that needs to change. Join this webinar to learn about state and city solutions that would eliminate…

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Jun 7, 2011
Watch this video clip from a June 16, 2011, Metropolitan Planing Council Leadership Circle event, featuring a conversation between T. Boone Pickens, Chair, BP Capital Management, and legendary Chicago broadcaster Bill Kurtis. Pickens and Kurtis proved to be a humorous pair, even while addressing issues such as energy security, pollution, green energy solutions and natural gas, fracking, and Chicago's energy policy. Pickens was in Chicago that day for the official opening of two public access compressed natural gas fueling stations operated by Clean Energy Corporation.  To learn more about MPC's Leadership Circle, read this brochure, or contact MPC Development Director Kirsten Powers at…

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Oct 27, 2023
To bring innovation and insight to metropolitan Chicago's transportation discussion, this white paper examines the learnings from the Peer Exchange visits to Stockholm in 2008, and Berlin in 2009. It highlights key transportation innovations at work in these cities and their metropolitan regions, and translates these learnings into a local context.

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Oct 27, 2023
Read Let the Dollars Flow » To encourage more communities to apply for a significant but underutilized state low-interest loan for water infrastructure financing, the Metropolitan Planning Council, Ill. Environmental Protection Agency and Metropolitan Mayors Caucus conducted research, stakeholder surveys and interviews to recommend a number of reforms to the State Revolving Fund. Read Let the Dollars Flow »

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Oct 27, 2023
Life on Wheels tells the compelling story of a culture on the verge of a revolution that will transform our economy, our environment, and the rhythms of our everyday lives. In this documentary, a collection of mobility mavens, technologists, and visionaries takes viewers on a journey through the highways, back alleys, and futurescapes of transportation – how we get from here to there. Life on Wheels addresses the promises, dangers, and absurdities of our current auto-centric transportation system and explores new possibilities and stories of change. The subject of mobility has vast implications. It touches our core values of freedom, health,…

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Oct 27, 2023
Lincon Park Zoo's Senior Vice President of Conservation Programs Steve Thompson explains the zoo's new Nature Boardwalk, which is attractive to animals, fish and people -- and saves water.

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Oct 27, 2023
The Little Calumet River Conservation Action Plan (CAP) presents a framework for improving the health of nature and the quality of life for communities along the six and a half mile corridor of the Little Calumet River from its confluence with the Cal-Sag Channel to its confluence with the Grand Calumet River. 

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Jan 3, 2018
Little Cal Section 319 Plan 

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Mar 3, 2010
The Livable Communities Act (S 1619 and HR 4690) would provide a multi-year authorization for federal sustainability initiatives. The bill authorizes $4 billion over four years for regional planning and challenge grants to make communities more livable, and eliminates federal barriers to sustainable development. Proposed language supported by MPC and national partners would incorporate employer-assisted housing within this legislation.   Engage employers in creating livable communities Contact your legislator and urge support for the Livable Communities Act with incentives for employer-assisted housing. The following legislators are co-sponsors of the legislation. Thank them for their leadership and encourage other legislators to support…

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Jan 4, 1996
An overview of MPC's Aviation Fact Sheet series

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Oct 27, 2023
Highway and RTA Transit funding Year 4 Progress Report

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Oct 27, 2023
The Multifamily Resource Guide – produced by municipal leaders, Preservation Compact, Chicagoland Apartment Association, and partners including MPC offers a list of public and private sector resources including: energy assistance, financing, preservation, tenant relations, and more to assist multifamily property owners in metro Chicago.

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Oct 27, 2023
We love to celebrate the construction of new roads, bridges and rails, but how can we remind ourselves of the everyday importance of maintaining what we already have? We added some cake and ribbons to the task of filling potholes to find out.Don't forget to share your photos of transportation frustrations on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram with #AccelerateIL. Tell Springfield you want transportation to be a priority in 2015! Go to http://www.accelerateillinois.com to add your name to the list.

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Jan 2, 2006
Business Leaders for Transportation's new report, "Making the Case for Public-Private Partnerships in Illinois." PUBLIC PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP COMMITTEEChairJohn GatesFormer Board Chair, Metropolitan Planning Council Members MarySue BarrettPresident, Metropolitan Planning CouncilFrank H. BealExecutive Director, Chicago Metropolis 2020Bernard J. FordSr. Chair, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce Transportation Infrastructure CommitteeKit HodgeAssociate, Metropolitan Planning Council James C. LaBelleDeputy Director, Chicago Metropolis 2020Thomas H. MorschCo-Chair, Metropolitan Planning Council Transportation CommitteeRob NashDirector of Government Relations, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce Gerald J. RoperPresident and CEO, Chicagoland Chamber of CommercePeter SkoseyVice President of External Relations, Metropolitan Planning Council Maria ChocaUrban Program Director, Chicago Metropolis 2020 Executive Summary To keep…

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Oct 27, 2023
Second edition, June 2013 As the foreclosure crisis enters its seventh year, a growing number of single-family homes in the Chicago metropolitan area – some already foreclosed, some in the process of foreclosure – are being rented. Some are being rented by people who have lost their homes, while others are being rented by lenders or investors who have taken title to foreclosed properties. Two things are evident: The demand for quality rental homes has risen sharply and communities must adapt to rapidly increasing numbers of single-family rental homes. In addition, many investors are new to the market and lack…

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Oct 27, 2023
As of Oct. 30, 2009, MPC and its partners are actively building several interjurisdictional partnerships throughout northeastern Illinois. Partnerships listed as 'potential' reflect initial conversations with local decision-makers.

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Oct 27, 2023
This white paper describes research conducted by MPC Commute Options Project Manager Tim Grzesiakowski and Research Assistant Ziggy Czykieta about marketing transportation services to the Chicago area's Polish community. It discusses the four waves of immigration from Poland to the U.S., where Poles in the Chicago area live, what transit information is provided in Polish, and how Chicago's Polish media covers transportation stories.

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Jan 7, 2009
On-the-ground innovations related to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act Bruce Katz of the Brookings Institution moderated a HUD webcast on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and Innovations with three panelists from across the country, including MPC President MarySue Barrett.  MarySue was asked to discuss the motivation and status of the the interjurisdictional work underway in the South Suburbs -- with technical support from MPC and the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus -- to respond to the Neighborhood Stabilization Program.   Eighteen communities have formed the South Suburban Housing Collaborative and, with resources from the Chicago Community Trust, recently hired a Director of Housing Initiatives to align programs,…

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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023
In 2014, the Metropolitan Planning Council celebrates 80 years of Reinventing the Region. Read more in MPC's latest annual report: https://metroplanning.org/annualreport/2013/default.aspx

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Sep 11, 2012
Since 1934, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has been dedicated to shaping a more sustainable and prosperous greater Chicago region. As an independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, MPC serves communities and residents by developing, promoting and implementing solutions for sound regional growth.

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Oct 27, 2023
Since 1934, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has been dedicated to shaping a more equitable, sustainable and prosperous Chicago region. MPC brings the right people together to take on the biggest challenges, ensuring that in the years and decades yet to come, everyone across the Chicago region will live in more equitable, vibrant neighborhoods, bustling with life and economic opportunity.

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May 8, 2010
Metropolitan Planning Council and Openlands hosted a roundtable on Aug. 3, 2010, focused on the connections between energy and water use. This was the second event in our summer series, "Choosing our Water Future," and topics explored included: * The energy demands of water systems, and the water demands of energy production, * The impact of energy costs for water consumption on municipal budgets in northeastern Illinois, * The potential for monetization of water-energy savings, and * National and international best practices in utility planning and water-energy conservation. This video features Dr. Michael Webber, Associate Director of the Center for International…

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Jan 23, 2024
What is the role of transportation in accessing opportunity?  Transportation regularly comes up as a key factor for accessing employment and other needs such as food, shopping, recreation and community services. Transportation can be an even more significant challenge for people living in economically disconnected areas. The issues are multifaceted and complex. Affordable housing is often located far from employment centers. In some cases, the transit system is not designed to overcome that spatial barrier.  Many communities do not have all the amenities people need for a high quality of life, requiring more effort spent on travel to meet those…

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Oct 27, 2023
The COVID-19 crisis is showing us that even with remote technologies that allow some people to work from home, essential workers must be able to get to work at places like hospitals, grocery stores, food service and essential retail. Put simply, transportation for workers matters for us all, but many disadvantaged workers and job seekers face serious transportation challenges. In the Chicago region, 2.8 million people– mostly low-income communities of color – live in economically disconnected areas. This event highlights national research on equity-oriented performance measures and highlight methods that can be applied in our region. Speakers Audrey Wennink, Director…

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Oct 27, 2023
Water knows no boundaries. Following the path of least resistance, it flows downhill, often crossing many arbitrary lines: municipal borders, infrastructure rights, planning areas, and modeling extents. While water may not respect these border lines, they nevertheless inform our decisions as water resource managers, elected officials, property owners and citizens—so they matter a great deal. The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC), working in concert with CH2M, a global engineering leader with experience in the Chicago region, created this Regional Planning Framework because we believe that the ability to plan and implement stormwater solutions across boundaries is a vital component of the next…

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Oct 27, 2023
This report presents findings from a study conducted by HDR Decision Econom­ics, in association with Dr. Alex Anas, for the Metropolitan Planning Council. The main purpose of the study is to analyze and, to the extent possible, quantify the costs resulting from traffic congestion on area roads, including costs in lost time, wasted fuel, and environmental degradation. Although the Urban Mobility Report series prepared at the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) has already done much to quantify and publicize these costs for Chicago and many other urban areas, it is merely one perspective on this subject. A number of metropolitan planning…

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Oct 27, 2023
Illinois' U.S. Senate candidates Alexi Giannoulias (D), Mark Kirk (R), and LeAlan Jones (Green) explained their plans for improving Illinois' economy, infrastructure, communities and environment at the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) 2010 Annual Luncheon at the Hyatt Regency Chicago this afternoon. Nearly 1,000 Chicago-area corporate, civic, government and community leaders attended the event. In a non-debate format, Lynn Sweet, Chicago Sun-Times Washington bureau chief, interviewed Giannoulias, Kirk and Jones about their plans to support regional planning, improve coordination among federal agencies, achieve positive returns for metropolitan Chicago through the next federal surface transportation bill, and ensure the region has enough…

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Oct 27, 2023
Illinois' U.S. Senate candidates Alexi Giannoulias (D), Mark Kirk (R), and LeAlan Jones (Green) explained their plans for improving Illinois' economy, infrastructure, communities and environment at the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) 2010 Annual Luncheon at the Hyatt Regency Chicago this afternoon. Nearly 1,000 Chicago-area corporate, civic, government and community leaders attended the event. In a non-debate format, Lynn Sweet, Chicago Sun-Times Washington bureau chief, interviewed Giannoulias, Kirk and Jones about their plans to support regional planning, improve coordination among federal agencies, achieve positive returns for metropolitan Chicago through the next federal surface transportation bill, and ensure the region has enough…

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Oct 27, 2023
Illinois’ U.S. Senate candidates Alexi Giannoulias (D), Mark Kirk (R), and LeAlan Jones (Green) explained their plans for improving Illinois’ economy, infrastructure, communities and environment at the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) 2010 Annual Luncheon at the Hyatt Regency Chicago this afternoon. Nearly 1,000 Chicago-area corporate, civic, government and community leaders attended the event.

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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023
Illinois' U.S. Senate candidates Alexi Giannoulias (D), Mark Kirk (R), and LeAlan Jones (Green) explained their plans for improving Illinois' economy, infrastructure, communities and environment at the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) 2010 Annual Luncheon at the Hyatt Regency Chicago this afternoon. Nearly 1,000 Chicago-area corporate, civic, government and community leaders attended the event. In a non-debate format, Lynn Sweet, Chicago Sun-Times Washington bureau chief, interviewed Giannoulias, Kirk and Jones about their plans to support regional planning, improve coordination among federal agencies, achieve positive returns for metropolitan Chicago through the next federal surface transportation bill, and ensure the region has enough…

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Oct 27, 2023
At Metropolitan Planning Council's (MPC) 2016 Annual Luncheon on Monday, Jan. 9, 2017, this video served to set up a conversation about the role of foundations in improving equity of opportunity for everyone in Chicagoland.

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Jun 4, 2024
The 2023 Annual Report celebrates the strides we've made toward a more equitable and just Chicago region. We remain committed to shaping a Chicago region that values every community and where everyone can affordably live, work, and thrive.

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Oct 27, 2023


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Jan 24, 2024


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Jan 24, 2024


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Jan 26, 2024


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Oct 27, 2023
This summer's drought is no fluke. The Chicago region's precipitation patterns are trending toward longer periods without rain punctuated by sudden bursts of rapid, intense rainfall that overload local and regional sewer systems -- causing basement back-ups basements and untreated discharges to waterways. Solutions exist, but they are costly and require coordination between multiple units of government and private property owners.Fortunately, the Chicago region doesn't face these challenges alone. Other midwestern metropolitan areas with comparable climate, infrastructure and water management governance structures are grappling with the same issues: How do we priortize investment in gray vs. green infrastructure? How do…

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Jul 2, 2013
Vacant, abandoned and blighted properties impede Cook County's economic development, weaken the tax base, and impose significant costs to local governments. A countywide land bank is needed to return large swaths of land to productive use and stabilize local communities across Cook County. With approximately 10 percent of housing units in Cook County standing vacant and foreclosure activity up 28 percent in the first half of 2012, Cook County Commissioners and President Toni Preckwinkle authorized the creation of a Land Bank Advisory Committee (LBAC). The LBAC, chaired by MPC's MarySue Barrett, consisted of civic, financial, legal, and community development professionals…

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Jan 10, 2024


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Jan 24, 2024


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Jan 24, 2024


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Jan 24, 2024


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Nov 9, 2007
The Metropolitan Planning Council's Issue Brief on Restrictive Covenants/Deed Restrictions.

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC has released its 2023 Mayoral Briefing Book, a wide-ranging outline of priorities that includes specific action items for the next administration. Outlined priorities relate to the urban built environment and include public transit and transportation, stormwater management, safe drinking water, and inclusive, community-based planning.

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Jan 4, 2004
Issue Chicago’s current zoning ordinance requires that all owners of properties within 250 feet of each lot line of a property applying for an amendment, and within 100 feet for variations must receive notification delivered in person or by certified mail, return receipt requested. MPC has three concerns about the current code. First, this method does not include renters. According to the 2000 U.S. Census, 56.2 percent of Chicago residents are renters, so notification is missing a large and important group of community members. Second, if notification is delivered via certified mail or return receipt, the owner must sign the…

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Jan 3, 2013
Offering similar benefits to rail, but at a fraction of the cost, Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) will make the most of Chicago's existing street infrastructure to better connect people to neighborhoods and destinations across the city. This new form of public transportation not only will increase access to jobs, retail and institutions, including schools and hospitals, but also will run more efficiently than a regular bus, saving riders time and money.The City of Chicago has big BRT plans, most significantly the development of a system plan to scope out future priority BRT routes. Already, individual routes are in the works:…

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Nov 9, 2012
Even as the economy struggles, our growing regional population is demanding smarter investments to expand and improve transit. Given the scarcity of available public funds, governments are beginning to tap innovative financing tools such as variable parking pricing, public private partnerships, and value capture around bus and rail stations. Because transportation networks and land values are closely linked, public investments in transportation infrastructure can increase the value of land surrounding these investments, benefiting landowners, developers and governments. This roundtable will explore how value capture and other innovative financing tools can generate revenue to finance transportation operations and future expansion, such…

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Sep 10, 2012
Imagine a busy Dad who spends his days at the office and his evenings shuttling kids to practices and play dates. Or a businesswoman whose work frequently takes her out of town. Consider the night student, the small business owner, the shift worker: These are just a few of people who have something to contribute to local community decisions, but rarely have the time to attend traditional public meetings. Increasingly, technology is helping to engage new community voices in local planning. Through laptops, tablets, and mobile phones, Americans are "plugged in," even while on the go: An April 2012 Pew…

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Nov 10, 2012
Improving transportation infrastructure means more than building roads and bridges. Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) use technology to maximize the capacity of existing infrastructure to improve traffic flow, decrease delays, and give riders up-to-the-minute system information for a relatively low cost. The Chicago region has several examples of ITS, such as the Chicago Transit Authority's bus and train trackers and the Illinois Tollway's I-PASS electronic tolling system. Still, there is tremendous room for growth. This roundtable will showcase how cities around the world are proving the real potential of ITS by implementing such technologies as congestion pricing, variable priced parking, and…

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Oct 27, 2023
The coronavirus pandemic has made it clear that communities and individuals have not been well served by the current economic system with many unable to afford basic needs, like housing, food and utilities. New creative approaches are needed to help the Chicago region plan for an equitable response and build back better than before this crisis.  Join MPC and AECOM for a discussion about how Chicago can create and maintain middle-income jobs in the city’s industrial corridors through providing the necessary planning infrastructure and policy ecosystem needed to bolster employees and neighborhoods. Two key questions the panel will explore is…

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Jun 10, 2015
Infill development is a strategic way to grow and strengthen our region, by giving new life to land within existing cities and suburbs. By creating new residential and job opportunities in places that already have quality transportation options, infrastructure and amenities, we can mitigate traffic congestion, municipal costs and air pollution, all while improving people’s lives: Indeed, new research by Smart Growth America and the University of Utah shows how residents of more compact regions have lower household costs, live healthier, longer lives and more easily build wealth and social capital.So why are metropolitan regions increasingly growing outward? Between 2000…

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Oct 27, 2023
Frustrated by your commute? You're not alone. From Chicago to Springfield, and from Belleville to Bourbonnais, Illinoisans in big and small towns alike are fed up with the state of our roads, bridges, transit lines, sidewalks and bike paths. A recent MPC survey found that most people experience transportation frustrations on a daily basis—no surprise considering that our state is grappling with a huge infrastructure backlog and diminishing funding to improve it. Join MPC on Friday, March 20, to learn about Accelerate Illinois, the campaign for a sustainable solution to fix what ails Illinois’ transportation system.MPC’s roundtable will feature Kirk…

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Nov 9, 2013


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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023
Against a backdrop of global population growth and urbanization, the recent National Climate Assessment made clear that extreme weather events—heat waves, drought, tropical storms, high winds, storm surges and heavy downpours—are becoming more severe and substantially affecting the safety, health and economy of entire communities. Events like Hurricane Sandy and northeastern Illinois' own flooding in 2011 and 2013 have made it clear that we remain vulnerable in spite of advances in disaster preparedness.This MPC roundtable will offer insight into the two biggest resiliency planning efforts to date—post-Katrina New Orleans and post-Sandy New York and New Jersey—featuring the thought leaders behind…

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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 5, 2013
Audio-only recording of May 7, 2013 MPC Roundtable—Immeasurable Loss: Modernizing Lake Michigan Water Use. A video recording is also available.

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Oct 27, 2023
Our nation’s water service infrastructure is crumbling and in need of reinvestment, to the tune of $1 trillion to repair and upgrade drinking water infrastructure and some $300 billion to improve sewage collection and treatment facilities. While these numbers are hard to wrap our heads around, what’s encouraging is that most Americans—more than 80 percent—believe it is extremely important to invest in strategies to secure our water supplies for today and the future. So how do we get there? Join us for a roundtable featuring water industry leaders discussing a range of local, state and federal efforts toward workable funding…

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Dec 12, 2013


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Sep 12, 2013
Full recording (with corrected audio) of MPC's Dec. 6, 2013 roundtable, Making the Case for Commute Options.Did you know that of the 10 largest metropolitan areas in the United States, the Chicago region is the only one without a coordinated Transportation Demand Management (TDM) strategy? Meanwhile, more people are driving alone to work and fewer are taking transit, and congestion costs our region $7.3 billion a year. Yikes!In 2011, MPC began a Commute Options pilot, working with local employers to survey their employees about commuting patterns and design programs that provide alternatives to driving alone. MPC recruited 16 Chicago-area employers…

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Apr 6, 2014


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Oct 6, 2014
If this winter has taught us anything, it's the value of being prepared—not just for the expected, like snow, but also for unforeseen climate conditions like the polar vortex. The increasing frequency of extreme weather events is creating a complex knot of pressures for governments, businesses and communities. Northeastern Illinois’ resiliency—our ability to provide critical public services such as transportation, communications, water and flood management—is being tested. This MPC Roundtable will highlight leading governance and technology practices that can help our region and others achieve greater infrastructure resilience and ensure that our businesses stay up and running during critical moments.…

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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023
Slides from the May 15, 2013 MPC Roundtable on resilient infrastructure.

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Oct 27, 2023
One is an academic institution in the heart of the city of Chicago; the other is a manufacturing company located 40 miles northwest in suburban Carpentersville, Ill., population 38,062. Though it may seem unlikely, University of Chicago and OTTO Engineering have some things in common: Both of these large employers are anchoring community redevelopment by investing in their local housing markets.At this MPC Roundtable, University of Chicago's Derek Douglas, vice president, civic engagement; and OTTO Engineering President Tom Roeser will compare and contrast how their unique housing reinvestment strategies support the local economy. UofC has offered an employer-assisted housing program…

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Aug 4, 2014
While regulatory requirements and infrastructure systems often adhere to political and departmental borders, precipitation does not. The results are often fragmented decision-making and chronic stormwater issues like flooding and compromised water quality. And yet, the tools exist to collaborate effectively across borders on these vexing problems; where there's a collective will, there's a way. Solving our stormwater problems is a matter of scale, but also having unifying goals, a shared action agenda, and the right decision-making processes. Join us to explore what the Chicago region can learn from successful collaborative stormwater mitigation efforts elsewhere in the country.Confirmed speakers:Susan Harper, Public…

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Oct 27, 2023
After every election and inauguration, those of us concerned with regional planning ask, “What’s our game plan and where do we go from here?” Over two months after Donald Trump was elected president, we are still making sense of what is possible moving forward and the opportunities we have to ensure our region thrives.Join MPC and housing, transit and climate policy experts who will share their insights on what’s happening at the federal level and the impact it may—or may not—have on Illinois and Chicagoland.We will explore how Trump’s campaign promises may translate to public policy and the likely impacts…

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Sep 5, 2017
These days, squeezing extra dollars out of state and federal budgets is nearly impossible. That’s why transportation agencies are moving toward new, data-driven planning approaches to ensure the dollars they invest reap the maximum benefit. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) has recently taken a leap forward by developing one of the most advanced tools in the nation to evaluate roadway projects based on a set of criteria that ensure projects will achieve maximum return on investment. Join MPC to hear experts discuss performance-based planning in transportation and IDOT’s new tool for prioritizing investments. We'll explore the context for developing…

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Feb 3, 2017
Chicago’s first National Monument. A bright new Metra station. Local and national business expansion. Increasing incomes and education levels. And winner of MPC’s 2016 Burnham Award for Excellence in Planning. Simply put, the Pullman community has a lot going for it.And yet, many questions remain. Now that there is a federal presence in Pullman, what does it mean for fulfilling the promise of the National Monument—particularly in light of the new administration? How will economic forces, shifts in industrial land use, and housing market pressures elsewhere in Chicago affect the community? And how do we ensure that all of Pullman…

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Oct 27, 2023
Illinois is at an inflection point: As the state continues to lose population—in particular Black and Brown residents—while weathering ongoing and pandemic-related fiscal instability, positive signals during the early-January “lame duck” session of the Illinois General Assembly indicated that state lawmakers are ready to roll up their sleeves in Springfield this spring. The election of Ill. Rep. Emanuel “Chris” Welch as the first Black Speaker of the House, and sweeping criminal justice reforms passed during the lame duck represent new opportunities for the independent Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) to work with all parties and both Chambers.   In areas ranging from…

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Oct 27, 2023
Metropolitan Planning Council submitted a letter of support to Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle and Commissioner Bridget Gainer on the proposal for a countywide land bank. On July 24, 2012, MPC President MarySue Barrett was named chair of the County's Land Bank Advisory Committee.

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May 11, 2008
Friends of MPC talk about the Council's role in Chicagoland and their lives. This video was featured at MPC's 2005 Annual Luncheon.

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC urges Commissioners to adopt the We Will Chicago framework plan, which is the first citywide plan the Department of Planning and Development (DPD) has undertaken since the 1960s. For too long, Chicago has lacked a unifying vision of what we want this city to be, and the values we want to drive public deicisions. We Will Chicago captures this vision through its guiding principles, themes, goals, and objectives. MPC has been a partner, advisor, and participant in We Will Chicago on various aspects of the planning process. We co-developed the pre-planning workshops that helped shape the themes and structure…

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Oct 27, 2023
There is a 30-year gap in life expectancy between America’s wealthiest and poorest neighborhoods. This trend holds true in Chicago, where life expectancy varies by neighborhood, income, and race.In his 2017 book, The Death Gap: How Inequality Kills, Chicago-based physician David Ansell exposes the structural roots of the life expectancy gap: racial and economic discrimination. Ansell makes the case for why inequality should be considered a societal illness, and provides action steps to move toward health equity.Sponsored by: Presence Health and Revolution Brewing (beverages)

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Apr 11, 2013
MPC Year in Review for 2013 Annual Luncheon: Accelerating Change.

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Oct 27, 2023
Through careful planning and innovative strategies that make the most of limited financial resources, we can respond to pressing issues facing families, businesses and communities – and pave the way toward long-term sustainable growth in metropolitan Chicago. Guided by a powerful combination of common sense and best practices with a high return on investment, and in partnership with new leaders in Washington D.C. and Springfield, Chicagoland can move to the head of the class.

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Aug 7, 2009
MPC provides assistance to organizations and communities around the country to build strong employer-assisted housing initiatives and leverage business engagement in housing solutions.

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary The City of Chicago maintains multiple financial instruments for leveraging investment across the city to benefit communities. Passed in May 2016, the Neighborhood Opportunity Fund (NOF) ordinance is an innovative tool to leverage investment from high-density areas for commercial corridor and small business improvements in disinvested communities on the South and West sides. In its first 18 months, the fund received $47.8 million and secured commitments totaling $203 million. After two rounds, approximately $12M in grants have been awarded to 90  small businesses on the South and West sides. The Emanuel administration appropriated $12M for Neighborhood Opportunity Bonus programs…

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Oct 27, 2023
[insert date] Dear Legislator: I’ve heard alarming things about education in Illinois and I’m worried. Eighty percent of school districts are now deficit spending. Districts throughout the state are laying off teachers. More than 400,000 public school students do not meet Illinois Learning Standards. Not all districts have the resources to provide an adequate education. Illinois relies too heavily on local districts to fund schools — we’re 48th out of the 50 states, in fact, in the amount the state contributes to education. That leaves property taxes as the revenue source to fund local schools. According to the Education Funding…

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Oct 27, 2023
[insert date] Dear Editor: Articles appear almost daily about growing problems with our schools in Illinois — from school district deficits that are leading to teacher layoffs, to students not meeting grade level standards. One of the reasons Illinois has an education crisis is because the state’s support for school funding is inadequate, leaving local districts to rely on property taxes. Is this the message we want to send to our children — that the quality of their education depends on where they live? Network 21: Quality Schools for Stronger Communities, a coalition of education, labor, civic and business organizations…

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Jun 4, 2005
Focusing on how to improve transportation design.

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Sep 10, 2007
Click here for a PDF version of North Lawndale: A Survey of Existing Conditions.

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Jul 10, 2014
On Tuesday, Oct. 7, 2014, Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) presented our proposal for reimagining the Old Cook County Hospital campus, along I-290, at the Ill. Medical District Blue Line stop. Cook County was looking to preserve the historic building's ornate facade. MPC's proposal celebrates and captures the beauty of the original hospital while also creating an Epicenter for the Ill. Medical District and the City of Chicago. The proposal would reflect the urbanity and vitality of the city where medical students, researchers, workers, and residents gather to innovate, interact, reside, work, live and heal. Review MPC's proposal >>

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Mar 6, 2014
We all have spots like this in our neighborhood: It's a spot that's been through a lot (no pun intended). It's down on its luck. Doesn't have many friends. Plastic bags, overgrown lawn, dirt patches ... or maybe it's a frumpy strip of retail without much allure. Either way, it could use a little love.Well, Chicagoland, now is your chance to do something about it! The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) is challenging Chicago-area individuals and community groups to teach an Old Place New Tricks by activating a public space for one day this summer.Visit www.oldplacenewtricks.com

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Sep 2, 2006
In the face of scarce economic resources and a state fiscal crisis, the wise use of public funds is more important than ever.  From operating funds to capital expenses, public officials face increased scrutiny with respect to how they spend taxpayer dollars.  Planning is the cornerstone of efficient government, whether local, state or national.  By identifying the needs of Illinois' communities in advance, planning public investments that support growth and guiding private investment, resources are preserved to achieve the economic competitiveness and quality of life we want. Just as an individual plans for retirement, or a business plans a new…

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Nov 5, 2020
Highlights  progress in achieving the 2020 goals outlined as part of the Our Great Rivers vision.

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Oct 27, 2023
Our Great Rivers is a vision for creating a more inviting, productive, and living river system in the city of Chicago, released in 2016 by the City of Chicago, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC), Friends of the Chicago River, and many other partners. More than 6,000 residents provided input to help develop this collective vision. Our Great Rivers defines 26 goals with accompanying action steps for stakeholders to work on collaboratively to improve the Des Plaines, Chicago, and Calumet rivers. Great Rivers Chicago is an initiative to ensure that the Our Great Rivers vision is advanced and stories of progress,…

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Oct 27, 2023
Water affordability challenges and their solutions vary at the local level: a one-size-fits-all solution does not exist. Identification of opportunities to ease the burden on ratepayers may require analyses that extend beyond a standard cost-of-service study and rate design, though the efforts are complimentary. This report builds on findings from initial analysis of water affordability challenges in northeastern Illinois and lessons from pilot projects with Chicago, Evanston, and others. The audience for this report is technical assistance providers, and the goal is to inform successful program design. For more information, visit: metroplanning.org/wateraffordability.

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Oct 27, 2023
No place, city, or policy starts from scratch. Rather, the plans, resources, and opportunities for (sub)urban development are driven by legacies of the distant past. These lasting legacies, often holding effect for years or decades, inevitably influence what’s possible in the present day. For more than 85 years, MPC has worked to transform the inherited legacies related to the region’s history of inequitable power structures and disinvestment.   As MPC prepares for a new year with new challenges and opportunities, join us for a reflection hour on the inherited legacies of past and present, and the impact we hope to pass on to…

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Oct 27, 2023
The Chicago region is facing a water supply crisis. Can we collaborate and get ahead of the problem? Look forward to Metropolitan Planning Council's Regional Water Supply Action Agenda in late summer 2016. https://metroplanning.org/water

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Feb 2, 2010
Chief Co-Sponsors: Ill. Sen. Heather Steans (D-Chicago) and Rep. Luis Arroyo (D-Chicago) Streets that are safe for pedestrians have benefits that ripple through neighborhoods and urban areas. Current Illinois legislation requires cars to yield, but not stop, for pedestrians in crosswalks, contributing to thousands of deaths and injuries. This law will clarify responsibilities for both drivers and pedestrians.  

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Oct 27, 2023
Learn more here

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Mar 5, 2022
What does it take to develop a municipal bicycle or pedestrian plan? Why should your community develop one?  This virtual panel features leaders from across our region that have successfully planned, adopted, and implemented bike/ped plans. As part of the Taking Climate Action by Prioritizing Walking, Biking, and Transit event series, this panel delves into the intersections of regional climate action, local urban planning, mobility, and the built environment that we engage with everyday. Tune in on April 28 at Noon to learn more from Active Transportation Alliance about how to develop a community bike/ped plan and to hear about the experiences and best practices from local leaders…

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Jun 9, 2012
MPC Vice President Peter Skosey, speaking at the CDOT press release for Chicago's first ever comprehensive pedestrian plan, makes the connection between pedestrians, cyclists, and economic growth. Sept. 6, 2012.

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Oct 27, 2023
Illinois PIRG released a new report today, Connecting the Midwest, that puts clear numbers and a clear vision on how high-speed rail will boost the Midwest economy, reduce highway and airport congestion, reduce dependence on oil, and protect the environment. The report, including a summary of key findings, is available on PIRG's web site: http://www.illinoispirg.org/news-releases/transit/transit-news/high-speed-rail-part-of-the-solution This video of Brian Imus, director, Illinois PIRG, was taken at the PIRG news conference, Monday, Sept. 20, 2010, at Union Station in Chicago.

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Oct 27, 2023
Illinois PIRG released a new report today, Connecting the Midwest, that puts clear numbers and a clear vision on how high-speed rail will boost the Midwest economy, reduce highway and airport congestion, reduce dependence on oil, and protect the environment. The report, including a summary of key findings, is available on PIRG's web site: http://www.illinoispirg.org/news-releases/transit/transit-news/high-speed-rail-part-of-the-solution This video of Warren Ribley, director, Illinois Dept. of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, was taken at the PIRG news conference, Monday, Sept. 20, 2010, at Union Station in Chicago.

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Oct 27, 2023
Illinois PIRG released a new report today, Connecting the Midwest, that puts clear numbers and a clear vision on how high-speed rail will boost the Midwest economy, reduce highway and airport congestion, reduce dependence on oil, and protect the environment. The report, including a summary of key findings, is available on PIRG's web site. At the news conference to announce the report, Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) Vice President Peter Skosey reinforced PIRG's message, citing a recent MPC analysis of the tourism benefits expected to be generated by the $1.2 billion investment to improve the current Chicago-to-St. Louis rail corridor. Projections show that over the next 10 years, about…

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Jul 7, 2010
In 2009, MPC teamed up with WPB (the Special Service Area for Wicker Park and Bucktown neighborhoods) to transform the Polish Triangle, located at the intersection of Division Street, Ashland Avenue, and Milwaukee Avenue, into a well-used public space. Through an online network group, online survey, and open house, more than 700 people contributed their ideas for transforming the space. This report summarizes this input and identifies ways to implement some of the changes recommended by residents.

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Oct 27, 2023
A short video on Placemaking, produced in August 2008 by Metropolitan Planning Council and Tu Multimedia.

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Oct 27, 2023
Placemaking is a people-centered approach to planning public spaces.  MPC's Placemaking Chicago project supports the creation and care of quality public places in the region through policy advocacy, collaboration with public agencies and officials, technical assistance on planning projects, and online resources.

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Oct 27, 2023
Chicago Tonight's Geoffrey Baer reveals the 2009 "What Makes Your Place Great?" contest winners.

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Nov 1, 2010
Each year, MPC presents its 12-month plan for developing, advocating for, and implementing policies that advance our mission: Since 1934, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has been dedicated to shaping a more sustainable and prosperous greater Chicago region. As an independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, MPC serves communities and residents by developing, promoting and implementing solutions for sound regional growth. MPC builds consensus around its agenda by partnering with civic organizations, community groups, business leaders, and government agencies throughout the research, advocacy and implementation stages of policy development. For 76 years, this cooperative approach has proven fundamental to making lasting change…

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May 1, 2011
MPC's Plan for Prosperity 2011 is our policy objectives guide for the year. Focusing on creating a more sustainable, equitable, and competitive region, this guide details MPC's recommendations on how to make our communities more livable for all of metropolitan Chicago's residents.

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Jan 2, 2008
This update covers the development status of renovated family properties, scattered sites, and new mixed-income communities.

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Jan 10, 2008
Updates on the status of community building efforts and resident engagement strategies in mixed-income communities.

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Jan 2, 2006
This workbook is designed as a step-by-step guide for Illinois municipal officials to prepare a local comprehensive plan for their communities. The term “comprehensive plan” means the vision of what the community wants to become and the steps needed to meet that goal. It is a statement by a local government that sets forth – in text, maps, illustrations and tables—the goals, policies and guidelines intended to direct the present and future physical, social and economic development that occurs within the jurisdiction. The workbook includes examples of plans and planning policies from Illinois communities, as well as checklists to help…

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary The city should deepen its support for the riverfront planning vision outlined in Our Great Rivers. Chicago is fortunate to have three very different rivers—the Des Plaines, Calumet and the Chicago. All three rivers are located within City of Chicago boundaries and, if treated as an asset, have the potential bring a range of benefits, from recreational to economic to ecological, to Chicagoans. The rivers run through 20 of Chicago’s 50 wards, and more than 394,000 people (15 percent of the city’s population) live within half a mile of one of the rivers. The Our Great Rivers vision, co-created…

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Oct 27, 2023
Full details: https://metroplanning.org/events/roundtable/detail/305Every day between now and the year 2030, 10,000 American Baby Boomers will turn 65. By then, one in five people will be at least 65 years old. Two thirds of this elderly population will live alone by the age of 85, and most will be female, disabled and, according to a report by the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies, unprepared for the challenges of aging. How can communities adapt to ensure that this cohort can age gracefully? The solution is a comprehensive approach that encompasses transportation, housing, healthcare and public education.At a local level, MPC has…

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Oct 27, 2023
Have you been wondering how we keep racial equity at the forefront as we make our way through COVID-19 and beyond? This interactive session will use recent headlines and scenarios to draw out racial equity principles, generate concrete ideas of how to use these principles, and invite participants to embed them into their own practice. This session is invite-only and will be capped at 30 participants. Tuyet M. Le is an independent consultant for nonprofits and government. Previously, Ms. Le served as executive director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago for over 18 years. Advancing Justice | Chicago is…

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary The city should implement the Resilient Chicago plan for inclusive growth and a connected city. Resilient Chicago sets forth a framework for building urban resilience that addresses the chronic stresses—such as racial inequity—and acute shocks—like heat waves and severe flooding—facing the City of Chicago. It lists 50 actions focusing on building stronger, equitable neighborhoods, robust infrastructure and prepared communities. City departments and agencies are leading many actions, and will be a critical partner in multiple other actions led by civic organizations and community stakeholders. Executive Order Resilient Chicago was released on February 14, 2019 as an outgrowth of Chicago’s…

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Sep 3, 2020
Check out this booklet, a blueprint of strategies for community action against displacement, developed over many months in collaboration with stakeholders. For more information, visit metroplanning.org/GarfieldPark

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Jan 5, 2007
The governments within the greater Marengo-Union area have established a partnership to develop and implement a plan for collaboratively managing natural resources and growth. These entities value the quality of life that is derived from high quality natural resources, well-planned development, and the preservation of the historical character of the landscape.

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Oct 27, 2023
The Chicago neighborhood known as “Andersonville” was planted with apple orchards in the 1850s. Following the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, Swedes moved into the area as the log cabins they favored were outlawed within city limits. New residents opened up storefronts to provide goods and services, and the area stayed heavily Swedish for decades, until many began to move to the suburbs after World War II.

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Oct 27, 2023
Through the Drinking Water 1-2-3 Technical Assistance program, MPC coordinated expert assistance to help communities tackle their most pressing water challenges. In the Village of Robbins, MPC worked with Village staff as well as contract engineers and consultants to identify the top priorities for Robbins’ water supply infrastructure. This itemized list provides clarity for prioritizing investments and opportunities to achieve economies of scale. The report also prepares the Village’s Board of Trustees and Public Works staff to apply for grants, loans, or other funding sources. For more information, visit metroplanning.org/academy.  

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Oct 27, 2023
As COVID-19 stretches government budgets, mistrust in police, unemployment, and illness frame a daily reality for many Chicagoans. So how can our public expenditures match our collective priorities? This session highlights the work of three efforts to seek public feedback about the City budget, the People’s Budget Project, Participatory Budgeting in Rogers Park, and the Budget Ambassador’s engagement effort by the Mayor's office. Let's talk about how participatory budgeting can inform Chicago's investments in safe and thriving communities. Click here to download a copy of the presentation.  Panelists:  Ivan Arenas, Associate Director, Institute for Research on Race and Public Policy –…

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Oct 27, 2023
How do we decide what types of transportation investments to make, and where to make them?  More and more, decision makers are relying on a performance-based planning process, which uses data to track performance measures that are designed to move us toward a set of policy goals, like decreasing greenhouse gas emissions or speeding up travel times. There is a developing practice of using racial equity as one of these measures, which will help improve mobility outcomes for people from marginalized communities. This was a key recommendation in MPC's Our Equitable Future policy roadmap. MPC research assistant and UIUC masters student Agustina Krapp investigated how…

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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023
Follow-up report to the Regional Rental Market Analysis; Review of general literature of what is known nationally and locally about barriers and opportunities to provide rental housing

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An MPC Housing Resource
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Oct 27, 2023
Mr. James Beatman, Sr., an attendee of the Dec. 15, 2011 public forum on the Chicago Union Station Master Plan, puts the principles of Placemaking into his own terms.

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Jan 6, 2001
Chicago Housing Authority Transformation Plan Fact Sheet No. 2

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Oct 27, 2023
The fourth in MPC's series of Fact Sheets examining the Chicago Housing Authority Plan for Transformation.

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An MPC Housing Resource
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Jan 2, 2002
The third in MPC's series of Fact Sheets examining the Chicago Housing Authority Transformation Plan.

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Oct 27, 2023
The Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) for Transportation Act will promote the sound development and operation of transportation facilities in Illinois, by authorizing public-private partnerships for the construction of new transportation infrastructure projects and limited lease of existing infrastructure assets. Authorizing public-private partnerships will allow Illinois to seek new sources of investment capital and more efficiently deliver infrastructure improvements, to improve our transportation system to better serve the needs of Illinois residents and businesses.

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Jan 5, 2008
MPC's recommendations in this May 2008 report offered a package of policy and revenue recommendations with one common goal: to improve Chicago’s transportation network to ensure the region’s continued economic growth. Without new and progressive transportation policies and sufficient revenue, Chicagolands' economy will stagnate or slide backward, spurring an exodus of jobs to other regions willing to make policy changes and identify needed revenue.

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Oct 27, 2023
What's the role of transportation in accessing opportunity? Transportation regularly comes up as a key factor for accessing employment and other needs such as food, shopping, recreation and community services. Transportation can be an even more significant challenge for people living in economically disconnected areas. The issues are multifaceted and complex. Affordable housing is often located far from employment centers. In some cases, the transit system is not designed to overcome that spatial barrier.  Many communities do not have all the amenities people need for a high quality of life, requiring more effort spent on travel to meet those needs.…

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary The only way our region and its residents will reach their full potential is by dismantling the barriers that create disparities and inequities by race and income. It is essential for our growth and our shared prosperity. The government sector has a constitutional obligation—and statutory powers—to end the segregation of people, power and resources, and demand it of others as well. This means a commitment to not only creating new mechanisms to address disparities, but to changing the institutional systems that perpetuate them through ongoing staff training, equity assessments of any proposed initiatives and investments, and public accountability to…

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary Stop excessive traffic fines and fees that disproportionately penalize poor and working class people of color. The City of Chicago must stop penalizing low-income drivers through inequitable fees by eliminating the suspension of driver’s licenses for unpaid parking tickets. The city should also assess the current fee structure and adopt an income-based sliding scale fee schedule so low-income people are not crippled by fees they will never be able to pay off. Excessive court fines, traffic tickets and compounding fees that people simply cannot afford to pay regularly lead to lost opportunities, whether through lost jobs or housing, suspension…

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Oct 27, 2023
Chief Sponsors: Ill. Sen. Susan Garrett (D-Highwood) Currently there are no minimum standards in the State Plumbing Code for capture of rainwater on site and re-use for non-potable purposes. As a result, local health boards have minimal ability to assure their communities that use of this technology is safe.  SB 38 would reverse that, and require the Dept. of Health to establish minimum standards. Being able to utilize stormwater to flush toilets would reduce the need for costly infrastructure investments by reducing stormwater runoff, easing strain on wastewater systems, and lessening the amount of treated drinking water being used for…

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Jan 9, 2024


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An MPC Housing Resource
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Oct 27, 2023
The plan includes a detailed assessment of current watershed conditions, green infrastructure maps for use by local developers and planners, and recommended action strategies. Restoring farmed wetlands, promoting compact design, and establishing a cross-sector water management steering committee are among the project’s recommendations.

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Oct 27, 2023
At its core, the Metropolitan Planning Council’s work is to advocate for the critical infrastructure and policy decisions that underpin individual and community health and wellbeing. MPC is shaping a policy response to the novel coronavirus, developing both short-term and long-term recommendations that move the region toward this vision.  These near-term strategies employ the principle of targeted universalism—ultimately, they benefit the whole, but are targeted toward those who need them most urgently. In addition to providing immediate relief, the following recommendations set the City, Region, State and Federal government on the path toward building back a better future that is…

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Jun 6, 2012
Water itself knows no political boundaries. Rivers flow from one community to another, aquifers span entire regions, rain falls where it will. Yet water resources management is inherently political. Northeastern Illinois’ 284 municipalities plan and implement many facets of water supply, stormwater, and wastewater management at the local level. Factors such as changes in municipal leadership, water’s rank among local priorities, and municipal finances determine whether water resources are managed well. At the same time, external factors such as compliance with federal, state or county regulations, competitiveness for loans or grants, and the real estate development market can affect local…

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Mar 2, 2023
In an effort to prepare our region for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Reconnecting Communities grant opportunities, in 2022 the Metropolitan Planning Council conducted research documenting the equity and environmental harm that transportation infrastructure has historically caused in our region. We conducted community engagement to identify potential projects to mitigate those harms. We received over 120 community-generated project ideas ranging from highway caps to complete streets to parks. This report compiles a list of the top 22 project ideas to reconnect communities disrupted by transportation infrastructure.

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Oct 27, 2023
The Final Recommendations for the Reconnecting Neighborhoods study were prepared through the efforts of the City of Chicago, the Regional Transportation Authority, CTA, Metra, and the project planning consultants, the Metropolitan Planning Council, HNTB Corporation and MKC Associates. Many citizens, staff, advisory task force members and officials of the City of Chicago participated in the planning process. Their involvement and insights are sincerely appreciated.

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Oct 27, 2023
For too many, 2020 has been a year of disappointments, obstacles, and challenges. In spite of the obstacles, the Metropolitan Planning Council has seen some bright spots and victories that have changed perceptions and advanced policies. Join us for this hour-long discussion in which we will reflect on the determined effort it took to achieve our 2020 milestones and share highlights of our achievements. This conversation will be moderated by MarySue Barrett, President of Metropolitan Planning Council. Speakers: Dan Cooper, Director of Research, MPC Chloe Gurin-Sands, Manager of Health Equity and Planning, MPC Debbie Liu, Community Engagement Associate, MPC Ryan…

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Jan 10, 1997
This is the third of a series of Reform '97 Issue Briefs. Here, two perspectives are provided to state legislators as they reconvene for the Fall Veto session.

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Jan 4, 1997
This is the first of three 1997 Issue Briefs by the Metropolitan Planning Council on issues of education quality, school funding and tax reforms for Illinois. Provides an overview of disparities in funding schools in our region and state.

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Jan 6, 1997
This is the second of three Reform '97 fact sheets.

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Jan 1, 1998
Three suggestions for reforming the Illinois Tax Increment Allocation Act

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Oct 27, 2023
The regional housing initiative is a new tool to make it easier to operate, develop, or rehabilitate mixed income, multi-family rental housing throughout the Chicago metropolitan region, particularly in areas of high job growth.

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Oct 27, 2023
https://metroplanning.org/rhiFor decades, our region has grappled with concentrated poverty and a lack of housing choices for low-income families. To address this, MPC, Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) and eight regional housing authorities created a collaborative called the Regional Housing Initiative (RHI) to support affordable and mixed-income housing developments in communities near transit, jobs centers, quality schools and amenities.Since 2002, RHI has created more than 400 apartments in 28 strong communities around the region. Since 2011, a combined regional waiting list, voucher portability and mobility counseling have ensured that voucher holders are "moving up" into these opportunity-rich communities. Now, the U.S.…

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Aug 11, 2013
What is the Regional Housing Initiative (RHI)? RHI is a program designed to encourage the development, rehabilitation and preservation of quality affordable rental housing throughout the Chicago metropolitan region. The Initiative is a partnership of seven housing authorities (Cook County, Waukegan, Lake County, Joliet, McHenry County, Oak Park, and Chicago), the Illinois Housing Development Authority and the Metropolitan Planning Council. The public housing authorities (PHA’s) have agreed to make project-based subsidies (RHI vouchers) available for up to 355 rental housing units in developments throughout the metropolitan region. What is the purpose of the Regional Housing Initiative? RHI is designed to…

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Jan 11, 1999
MPC served as project manager for the Regional Rental Market Analysis in 1999. The University of Illinois Chicago was the lead researcher, and the Urban Institute and Applied Real Estate Analysis particapated on the research team. This summary report of MPC's Regional Rental Market Analysis, describes a tight rental market with significant annual rent increases.  This unprecedented analysis, which measured 1999 rent and vacancy rates within each of the six metropolitan counties and provided forecast levels through 2004 and 2009, placed the overall vacancy rate in the region at an extremely low 4.2%. Surprise findings from the Regional Rental Market…

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Feb 10, 2014
Full details here: https://metroplanning.org/events/roundtable/detail/301Last year, Chicago Public Schools closed more than 50 schools across the city. Now vacant, these behemoth buildings join countless factories and warehouses that have sat empty for decades. We know that vacant properties pose significant challenges to communities; they attract crime, depreciate local property values, burden local fire, police and building departments, are difficult to acquire, finance and rehabilitate and undermine quality of life for nearby residents. What we hear less often, though, are the stories of how they can also serve as a canvas for meeting new needs in communities. How do we transform these…

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Apr 2, 2014
Each year, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) presents Plan for Prosperity, its 12-month agenda for promoting policies and development that make the Chicago region more equitable, sustainable and prosperous. Reinventing the Region, MPC’s policy agenda for 2014, focuses on these four ingredients of a successful region: Strong economy Quality housing and transportation Well-managed natural assets Vibrant neighborhoods

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Oct 27, 2023
For generations Archer Avenue provided a primary route from the Loop to Chicago’s southwest side and beyond. The stretch of Archer Avenue between Canal Street and Ashland Avenue, in the Bridgeport neighborhood, enjoyed a retail and commercial heyday and served as a gathering place for the neighborhood. That changed drastically with the construction of the Stevenson in 1964, which severed the northern section of the neighborhood along the Chicago River, displacing many businesses and homes, and creating a physical and psychological barrier that still predominates. The affects of the Stevenson and years of economic disinvestment along Archer eventually destroyed the neighborhood’s pedestrian-friendly environment. Today, the…

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Oct 27, 2023
Executive Summary For over 30 years, Illinois leaders have debated how to properly fund education to ensure a quality education for all children no matter where they live. Through economic boom and bust, school districts with inadequate resources have been unable to provide the level of education that more prosperous districts provide. Areas with high property tax rates have struggled to attract investment from businesses and homeowners. During this time, some schools have fallen chronically short of state learning standards, often the very same ones without local tax base to support their schools. The state's fiscal position also has deteriorated,…

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Jan 5, 2007
For over 30 years, Illinois leaders have debated how to properly fund education to ensure a quality education for all children no matter where they live. Through economic boom and bust, school districts with inadequate resources have been unable to provide the level of education that more prosperous districts provide.  Areas with high property tax rates have struggled to attract investment from businesses and homeowners. During this time, some schools have fallen chronically short of state learning standards, often the very same ones without local tax base to support their schools. The state’s fiscal position also has deteriorated, especially in…

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Oct 27, 2023
Resource guide from workshop entitled Doing Business with Cook County's Land Banks hosted by the Metropolitan Planning Council on July 24, 2014. This guide provides information on how to revisit topics discussed in the workshop including land bank policies, prequalification, researching properties and financial resources to support your land bank transactions.

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Jan 2, 2007
Retail 1-2-3 is the third in a series of workbooks for municipal and elected officials in Illinois and builds on the earlier successes of Planning 1-2-3, a how-to guide to the elements of comprehensive planning published in September 2006 and Sensible Tools for Healthy Communities, a workbook from 2004 on development review. The hallmark of the series is its attention to Illinois issues through in-depth descriptions and detailed case studies of Illinois communities and legislation. With the help of technical advisory committees of local and national experts from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors, the series coalesces into a valuable…

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Oct 5, 2006
The Peterson-Pulaski Industrial Corridor, a 47-year-old business and employment zone on the northwest side of Chicago, is home to 22 small to midsized companies that collectively employ approximately 1,900 people. The irregularly shaped parcel runs from Bryn Mawr Avenue on the south to Devon Avenue on the north, and from Kostner Avenue on the west to Pulaski Road on the east, generally paralleling the Union Pacific Railroad right-of-way. Virtually the entire area is currently zoned for manufacturing.

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Oct 2, 2022
Like most major metropolitan regions, Chicago’s public transit system is split between multiple providers: CTA, Metra, and Pace. And like most transit providers throughout the county, Chicagoland’s agencies are seeing sharp ridership declines during the COVID-19 pandemic. Although riders are beginning to return, there’s still a lot of ground to make up. Let’s clarify: this doesn’t mean transit has become any less vital. In fact, the last few years have highlighted the pivotal role transit must play for the region to achieve its climate and equity goals. So how can we both strengthen ridership and improve mobility equity?    This event’s moderated panel will look at fare integration: a…

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Feb 11, 2012
Recent Miami transplant Jeremy Davit has turned to a new type of commute to save time, and get some exercise. https://metroplanning.org/news-events/blog-post/6579

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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023
River Edge Ideas Lab: Adjaye Associates

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Oct 27, 2023
Architects discuss the unparalleled opportunity the Chicago River offers to residents throughout Chicago.

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Oct 27, 2023
Why River Edge Ideas Lab? Mayor Emanuel and others discuss why now is the moment to create a shared vision for the future of public space along Chicago's river edges.

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Oct 27, 2023
River Edge Ideas Lab: James Corner Field Operations

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Oct 27, 2023
River Edge Ideas Lab: Perkins + Will

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Oct 27, 2023
River Edge Ideas Lab: Ross Barney Architects

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Oct 27, 2023
River Edge Ideas Lab: Sasaki

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Oct 27, 2023
River Edge Ideas Lab: site

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Oct 27, 2023
River Edge Ideas Lab: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

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Oct 27, 2023
River Edge Ideas Lab: Studio Gang

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Oct 27, 2023
River Edge Ideas Lab: SWA

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Nov 2, 2003
Looking to strengthen Riverdale’s stock of affordable housing within a broad and ambitious redevelopment plan that includes TIF districts and industrial redevelopment, the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Chicago and Campaign for Sensible Growth will convene a two-day technical assistance panel (TAP) on Aug. 20 and 21, 2003 at the Riverdale Village Hall.

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Oct 3, 2021
The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has long emphasized the importance of supporting quality development near transit. As part of that support, MPC engages communities in shaping their local vision through our Corridor Development Initiative (CDI).  This report details the results of that community engagement process and points the way toward securing equitable development in Chicago's Rogers Park neighborhood, the result of a series of virtual and in-person community meetings to plan the future of greenspace at Howard and Ashland, near the Howard CTA station. The meetings were a partnership of the Metropolitan Planning Council, the 49th Ward Alderwoman Maria Hadden, A Just…

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Feb 10, 2020
This kick-off meeting provided an overview of the site at Howard and Ashland and gave participants the opportunity to discuss (re)development opportunities and challenges and voice their thoughts on community needs.

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Oct 27, 2023
A message from Alderwoman Maria Hadden of Chicago's 49th Ward. 

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Oct 27, 2023
An 11 part appendix detailing issues related to the Rolling Meadows Task Force.

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Oct 27, 2023
In recent years, the City of Rolling Meadows has intensified efforts to strengthen its financial base and become one of the region’s economic leaders. The City has also made it a goal to ensure that the local workforce and other residents in need of affordably priced homes continue to have options within the city. Rolling Meadows recognizes that economic growth and workforce housing go hand-in-hand, which many existing and prospective Rolling Meadows companies have corroborated. City officials are committed to ensuring that at least 20 percent of Rolling Meadow’s housing stock is and remains affordable and, in 2005, engaged the…

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 3, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Jan 5, 2000
Key Findings from the Regional Rental Market Analysis

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Oct 27, 2023
The Gary and Region Investment Project (GRIP) -- a regional initiative to reinvest in Northwest Indiana's urban core, led by the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC, www.metroplanning.org) and The Times Media Company (www.nwitimes.com) -- launched Oct. 27, 2010, with the "GRIP the Future" event, at the Genesis Center, in Gary, Ind. The event was both a resounding call to action and the first step in identifying a few key investments that the region can work together on to stabilize and transform its economy.To that end, GRIP the Future brought together nearly 200 people who have a stake in reviving Northwest Indiana's…

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Apr 8, 2004
Livable, attractive communities are created as a result of hundreds, even thousands, of development decisions. How can local elected and appointed officials increase the odds that they make the right decisions? This Workbook was created to meet that need. Sensible Tools for Healthy Communities uses U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 10 Principles of Smart Growth as the framework for development review. The step-by-step guidebook is written for municipal officials — planning commissioners, zoning boards, and city councils. The Sensible Tools format and process — aided by the expertise of a broad-based technical advisory team — provides the template for future guidebooks and…

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Oct 27, 2023
The practice of shared services across municipal boundaries continues to gain traction as munic­ipalities grapple with rising costs. Drinking water service is one such option municipalities can explore. This report outlines various water governance options available in Illinois for shared drinking water service between municipalities.

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Oct 27, 2023
A panel discussion on active transportation funding. Watch it here.

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary The city should create new green infrastructure and invest in existing infrastructure to address urban flooding. Many communities in Chicago, especially those on the South and West Sides, flood repeatedly. A single severe rainstorm in 2013 caused 2,500 “water in basement” and 800 “water on street” complaints, damages to businesses, and flooding at train stations and bus stops across the city. Flooding disproportionately affects minority and low-income neighborhoods: many of the zip codes with the highest amount of damages correspond with census tracts identified as economically disconnected. Additionally, the city’s drinking water source Lake Michigan is increasingly at risk…

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Oct 27, 2023
Video courtesy of Syndicat des Eaux d'ile-de-France (SEDIF). The original version in French can be viewed here: http://www.sedif.com/solidarite-eau.aspx

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Oct 27, 2023
The South Branch Parks Framework Plan, authored by the South Branch Park Advisory Council and SmithGroup in partnership with the Metropolitan Planning Council, Active Transportation Alliance, Friends of the Chicago River, and Cannon Design.

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Oct 27, 2023
The South Branch River Trail Priorities Report, authored by the Metropolitan Planning Council, the Active Transportation Alliance, Friends of the Chicago River, and Cannon Design,  in partnership with the South Branch Park Advisory Council and SmithGroup.

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Feb 8, 2010
Submitted by Peggy B. South Cook Street is Barrington's center of activity for shopping, dining, events and entertainment, making it home to the "Best Summer Ever". The South Cook Street corridor provides a small town feel with a mix of historic buildings and attractive, integrated new developments. The South Cook Street area offers a snapshot of the history of a village that began in 1865. Take a walking tour of these old buildings and the "history"of Barrington comes to life. The beauty of tree lined streets, benches, lampposts and hanging baskets provide the added charm that says you have arrived…

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Oct 27, 2023
Have you temporarily transformed a vacant space into a community asset in the Chicago/Gary/Milwaukee metro region? Enter to win cash in Placemaking Chicago's Space in Between contest by Aug. 31! www.placemakingchicago.comWritten and directed by Ariel RanieriCamera by Ryan Griffin-SteginkGuitar written and performed by Ethan SellersThank you to all the neighborhood residents who appeared in the video!The Space in Between contest is generously sponsored by Michaels Development Company.

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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023
Read the guide >> Chicagoland faces a stormwater management triple threat: increasing amounts of impervious surfaces that direct rain into our sewers, aging infrastructure that needs maintenance, and increasingly frequent and more intense storms. Municipalities need stormwater programs with dedicated sources of revenue to avoid costly property damage, street flooding and emergency repairs. Steady Streams, a new guide from the Metropolitan Planning Council, will help local leaders: Understand the need for dedicated stormwater funding today Identify what funding options are available Leverage these funds to finance capital improvements Learn from peers about successful implementation Read the guide at metroplanning.org/steadystreams

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Apr 5, 2011
Youngstown Mayor Jay Williams shared this video on the past, present and future of Youngstown at the final roundtable in MPC and Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning's series on implementing the GO TO 2040 plan.

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Feb 9, 2020
COVID-19 has been a traumatic and revealing experience for everyone, but in drastically different ways from one community to another. In some, death and unemployment are all too real. In others, the economic slowdown has crippled needed tax revenue for providing government services now and into the future. Race, income inequality, and underlying tax policy play a big part in determining what kind of experience has played out where. This event will explore those dynamics through stories directly from current and former mayors from throughout Northeastern Illinois. This event is part one of our Understanding the impact of COVID-19 on Chicagoland communities…

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Oct 27, 2023
StormStore: So buyers and sellers of stormwater credits can easily make a deal!

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Oct 27, 2023
Stormwater credit trading is an innovative, market-based approach that enables infrastructure that reduces flooding to be built efficiently where it’s needed most. The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago recently authorized stormwater credit pilots in two Cook County watersheds. The Nature Conservancy and the Metropolitan Planning Council will manage these pilots through our StormStore partnership. On July 9 we discussed stormwater credit trading and the Cook County pilots, as well as discuss what we’re looking for in the first projects in Cook County to take advantage of stormwater trading. Speakers:Ryan Wilson, Water Resources Manager, Metropolitan Planning Council Jen Jenkins, Natural Infrastructure Project…

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Oct 27, 2023
Streetsblog Chicago is launching on Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2013! http://chi.streetsblog.org

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Oct 27, 2023
Density is a controversial issue for many communities, but a certain concentration of development is essential to obtain and maintain the amenities communities want. This Issue Brief examines how density contributes to communities. It also explores how to create positive rather than negative density through the use of creative urban design solutions. Download the entire Density Issue Brief.

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Oct 27, 2023
Chicago’s Gold Coast. Knob Hill in San Francisco. Fifth Avenue in New York. All of these places bring to mind elegant, affluent, residential neighborhoods and desirable places to live, work and play. They also share another characteristic that is not always considered positive: density. Density is a controversial issue for many communities, but a certain concentration of development is essential to obtain and maintain the amenities communities want. This Issue Brief examines how density contributes to communities by providing the critical mass of people necessary to attract public amenities. It also explores how to create "positive" rather than "negative" density…

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Aug 11, 2011
Foreword by Metropolitan Planning Council, Metropolitan Mayors Caucus, and Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning The November 2011 edition of ProfitWise News and Views, written by Susan Longworth and published by the Community Development and Policy Studies Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, features Suburban Housing Collaboratives: a Case for Interjurisdictional Collaboration. The report profiles four clusters of neighboring communities in metropolitan Chicago that are addressing similar and unique housing and economic development challenges by working together across municipal borders, and with the private and philanthropic sectors, to prioritize and leverage resources and have the greatest local and regional impact. Known as interjurisdictional…

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Oct 27, 2023
Imagine if all communities had the capacity to address their economic and community development challenges and plan for the future efficiently and effectively. Instead of being trapped by “either-or” budget decisions, such as whether to maintain core services for residents or update their business attraction and retention strategy, what if local leaders combined resources with their neighbors so that they could connect struggling families to resources and secure new job opportunities? Rather than duplicating efforts, what if communities worked across municipal borders to take full advantage of shared assets, such as rail lines, and to revitalize their interdependent housing and…

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Oct 27, 2023
The Metropolitan Planning Council is part of growing group of regional, statewide leaders calling on Illinois to reform its approach to investing in a safe, reliable transportation system Illinois needs a new kind of capital bill that protects the public while meeting state’s transportation investment needs CHICAGO, April 29, 2019 – The Metropolitan Planning Council is part of a growing group of regional and statewide leaders calling for reforms to achieve a new kind of capital bill that ensures state funding is spent wisely to protect the public while delivering a safe, reliable transportation system. Members of the group include Active…

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Oct 27, 2023
James Corless, director of Transportation for America, speaks about the need for a new federal transportation bill and its importance to the GO TO 2040 plan. Corless spoke at an MPC-CMAP roundtable on March 25, 2011, part two of our ongoing series of roundtables about implementing the GO TO 2040 plan. "The President has said he wants to reward ... regions that do better planning. The future of transportation funding is not going to be in formula entitlement grants. It's going to be in competitive grants," said Corless. "The Chicago region, with our GO TO 2040 plan, I think is in…

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary We need to remediate our pervasive lead pipes and adopt rates, policies and programs for water service that protect all Chicagoans. The City of Chicago has a significant freshwater advantage over many of its national and international counterparts. Yet we risk not capitalizing on this resource due to critical water infrastructure and service issues: lead in drinking water and water affordability. These two critical issues also underscore systemic inequities in our city—thus taking action on our water issues will also improve quality of life and trust in government. Lead in Drinking Water There is no safe level of lead…

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Feb 8, 2010
Until recently, Taltree Arboretum & Gardens has been one of northwest Indianas best kept secrets but now it's one that we want to share with the rest of Chicagoland! Taltree Arboretum & Gardens is on a mission to improve the quality of life for the south Lake Michigan region by preserving green space through the establishment and maintenance of woody plant collections, landscaped presentation gardens, prairie restoration and wetland conservation. Since its inception by the Gabis Family in 1998, Taltree Arboretum & Gardens has grown to become a wonderland natural fascination. Originally our mission led us in simply restoring natural…

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Jan 6, 1998
Regional Development Update

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Jan 1, 1995
Key findings of MPC's 1995 study analyzing the effects of commercial and industrial growth on local property taxes in the six-county Chicago region.

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Jun 11, 2001
A look at recent research on how to use technology in urban planning to advance sensible growth.

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Jan 6, 1999
Telecommunications & Technology Issue Brief No. 1

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Aug 4, 2003
Commissioned by the Metropolitan Planning Council for the Chicago Housing Authority

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Apr 16, 2024
Written testimony was submitted on April 16, 2024 by Metropolitan Planning Council to the Chicago Plan Commission in support of the Chicago Sustainable Development Policy Update.

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Oct 27, 2023
Testimony given July 20, 2022.

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Oct 27, 2023
I created this video with the YouTube Video Editor (http://www.youtube.com/editor)

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Oct 27, 2023


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Oct 27, 2023
Thankful for in 2012: Tim - Water Taxi

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Oct 27, 2023
A series of maps displaying the many overlapping aspects of the Chicago Area Waterway System, as well as an excerpt from Before the Wells Run Dry, explaining Illinois' diversion of Lake Michigan water.

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Jan 11, 1998
Executive Report of research Conducted by MPC's Telecommunications Working Group.

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Feb 12, 2015
Karen Hasara of Citizens' Efficiency Committee for Sangamon County accepts the 2015 Citizen Transformer award at Transform Illinois' Nov. 2, 2015 conference, The Efficiency Advantage.

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Feb 12, 2015
Lt. Gov. Evelyn Sanguinetti speaks about the Local Government Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates Task Force at Transform Illinois' Nov. 2, 2015 conference, The Efficiency Advantage.

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Feb 12, 2015
Cook County Pres. Toni Preckwinkle speaks about collaboration and innovation in local government at Transform Illinois' Nov. 2, 2015 conference, The Efficiency Advantage.

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Feb 12, 2015
Rep. Jack Franks accepts the 2015 State Transformer award at Transform Illinois' Nov. 2, 2015 conference, The Efficiency Advantage.

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Feb 12, 2015
Rep. Ron Sandack accepts the 2015 State Transformer award at Transform Illinois' Nov. 2, 2015 conference, The Efficiency Advantage.

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Feb 12, 2015
Todd Hileman, Glenview Village Manager and leader of the Municipal Partnering Initiative, accepts the 2015 Local Transformer award at Transform Illinois' Nov. 2, 2015 conference, The Efficiency Advantage.

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Oct 27, 2023
In metropolitan Chicago, since 2009, three clusters of suburbs have been pioneering a groundbreaking, collaborative approach to planning, housing and economic development, known as interjurisdictional collaboration. These communities have worked together to advance jointly agreed upon reinvestment strategies, building local capacity while attracting more than $35 million in public and private sector investment. Their work has demonstrated the promise of this burgeoning model as an efficient, cost-effective, and effective approach to development.At this roundtable, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, Metropolitan Mayors Caucus and Metropolitan Planning Council will release a new paper that identifies policy reforms and best practices needed…

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Jan 6, 1996
Report on Northeastern Illinois Tax Increment Finance Project

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Oct 12, 2020
With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, global uprisings against racism and climate disasters, we recognize that we cannot address these issues in isolation and must forge partnerships that grapple with all of these crises. The panelists in the past three speaker series taught us that we have the power and agency to create a more intersectional movement toward housing justice that reflects our intersectional identities. Our final conversation will weave together insights from the different movement sectors that we learned about in our past three conversations. We will bring our panelists back together for a conversation about designing solutions that work…

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Jan 8, 1999
A national survey of zoning reform efforts.

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Oct 27, 2023
Read the 2022 Annual Report, featuring an overview of the new MPC Vision and the guiding three pillars of our work: Thriving Communities, Equitable Infrastructure, and Just Public Systems.

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Mar 12, 2013
Efficient, effective public transportation is at the heart of a competitive regional economy. With more than two million daily boardings on buses and trains operated by the region’s three major transit systems, Chicagoland has the second-most used system in the United States. Yet ridership is down about 60 percent from half a century ago, and as this report documents, the Chicago transit network must be improved significantly in order to compete with other metropolitan areas and grow the economy. Governor Pat Quinn’s announcement of a Northeastern Illinois Transit Task Force in summer 2013 offered a unique opportunity to evaluate the…

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Oct 27, 2023
In 2007, the Federal Highway Administration awarded the Illinois Tollway a grant to study the potential of congestion pricing in the Chicago region. The Tollway selected Wilbur Smith Associates, Inc., as the technical consultant for the study. The Metropolitan Planning Council, a policy research and advocacy nonprofit, joined the team to conduct public and stakeholder outreach. The study was guided by mayors and other elected officials from across the region, and monitored by the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning Transportation Committee. The primary goal of the study was to evaluate the potential of congestion pricing to improve mobility, and thereby the competitiveness…

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Nov 8, 2009
"What Makes Your Place Great?" Contest submission Submitted by Ami S. As I stroll along Fountain Square in Long Grove on the charming cobblestone paths through this beautiful village, my heart skips a beat to simpler times. This quaint village of shops offers so much more than many of todays modern shopping venues. The Shops of Long Grove, Illinois offer a shopping experience of yesterdays charms in todays hectic lifestyle. As the sun glistens off the water in Fountain Square, there are ducks floating effortlessly in the Long Grove Café and Restaurant at Mill Pond. Families enjoy the event as…

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Oct 27, 2023
Until recently, Elburn managed to retain its small town charm even as land speculation increased development activity. The region’s growth pressures will arrive at the village’s front door when Metra expands its commuter rail service from Geneva to Elburn by late 2005.

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Jan 23, 2024


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Jan 23, 2024


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Oct 27, 2023
Illinois was awarded $1.2 billion from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to improve the current Chicago-to-St. Louis rail corridor. This improved rail service will entice people to make the trip to Chicago that they otherwise would not have. Projections show that over the next 10 years, about 800,000 new tourists will visit Chicago because of the rail improvements, providing a major boost to the local economy.    The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) studied the economic benefits resulting from these new tourists over the first 10 years of rail operation. 

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Oct 27, 2023
Nearly every person in the Chicago region, or someone they care for, will face a disability that will impact their mobility at some point in their life. A public transportation system should meet the needs of all its customers, no matter their age or ability. That's why MPC worked with partners to craft 32 recommendations to improve Chicagoland's transportation network. For everyone.  To read the full report, click here. To read the technical appendix, click here.

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Oct 27, 2023
Nearly every person in the Chicago region, or someone they care for, will face a disability that will impact their mobility at some point in their life. A public transportation system should meet the needs of all its customers, no matter their age or ability. That's why MPC worked with partners to craft 32 recommendations to improve Chicagoland's transportation network. For everyone.  To read the full report, click here. To read the 17-page print report, click here. 

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Oct 27, 2023
FULL REPORT Nearly every person in the Chicago region, or someone they care for, will face a disability that will impact their mobility at some point in their life. A public transportation system should meet the needs of all its customers, no matter their age or ability. That's why MPC worked with partners to craft 32 recommendations to improve Chicagoland's transportation network. For everyone. To read the 17-page print report, click here.  To read the technical appendix, click here.

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Oct 27, 2023
This virtual event features:  Welcoming remarks by The American Society of Civil Engineers  Presentations by Michael Zigulich (Metropolitan Water Reclamation District), Jen Jenkins (The Nature Conservancy), and Ryan Wilson (The Metropolitan Planning Council)   A moderated audience-generated Q&A with Saki Handa Designed for civil engineers, this event will showcase the pilot program and answer questions about what projects are a good fit. It will also describe the pro-bono support available through the StormStore partnership. 

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Mar 11, 2008
Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) Vice President of External Relations Peter Skosey discusses discusses MPC's recent report, "Moving at the Speed of Congestion," which quantifies the true cost of traffic to metropolitan Chicago. This video was recorded in August 2008, in conjunction with the release of the report.

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Sep 2, 2021
Transit Equity Day featured U.S. Representatives Jesús G. "Chuy" García and Robin Kelly with community leaders who spoke on the critical nature of transit to the equity of the Chicago region as we recover from the COVID crisis. For the past four years on February 4, a network of transit rider unions, community organizations, environmental groups, and labor unions have organized Transit Equity Day – a national day of action to commemorate the birthday of Rosa Parks by declaring that public transit is a civil right. Rosa Parks is an iconic figure of the Civil Rights era who bravely chose…

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Oct 27, 2023
Chicago region trains and buses not only deliver passengers, they deliver job growth and economic resiliency. Transit Means Business shows that a well-funded and robust transit system yields many benefits, including jobs, increased worker productivity, a strong and resilient real estate market, and better health outcomes.

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Oct 27, 2023
HB 4768 will create the State Transportation Policy Committee, which will work with the Illinois Dept. of Transportation (IDOT) to ensure transportation investments will enhance state and local economic development, and quality of life for Illinois residents. The goals of the bill will create greater transparency, full and careful consideration for investments on their merits, and accountability for spending limited transportation dollars.

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Oct 27, 2023
Investing in the Chicago region's transportation System. Download the Issue Brief Extra.

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC Director of Transportation, Audrey Wennink, moderates a lively event with Ald. Martin, Ald. Sigcho Lopez, and Ald. La Spata on equity, sustainability, and budgeting for Chicago's regional transportation.  This event was hosted by the 47th Ward. 

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Oct 27, 2023
It is an unfortunate fact that commuters in northeastern Illinois deal with some of the most congested roads in the nation. Every year, Chicago-area rush-hour drivers spend roughly 61 hours stuck in gridlock, a shocking number that is projected to grow. According to the U.S. Census, between 1990 and 2000, commute times increased by more than 10 percent throughout the region, while the mismatch between where jobs are concentrated and where workers can afford to live created commute patterns that were nearly impossible to cover using public transportation. By supporting a set of programs that give incentives to employees to…

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Oct 27, 2023
In large urban areas, wherever there are concentrated employment centers, there is congestion.  Traffic delays are a daily reality for the thousands of commuters who drive to work.  This congestion contributes to worker turnover, worsens air pollution and diminishes leisure time.  Innovative transportation planning and management tools can provide solutions to congestion. One successful strategy for reducing congestion problems is the formation of transportation management associations, or TMAs.  TMAs vary in organizational structure throughout the country, but all have a common interest: reducing automobile congestion.  TMAs are voluntary organizations of employers offering transit incentives, ride-matching services and related benefits to…

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Oct 27, 2023
In metropolitan Chicago, finding employees to fill entry-level and skilled-labor jobs is a growing problem.  With the expansion of suburban job centers, and high concentrations of available workers in the city and first ring suburbs, a jobs/housing mismatch has developed.  In many job-rich suburban communities, public transportation is scarce or nonexistent, forcing both residents and workers to rely on automobiles to reach their destinations.  Many entry-level workers do not have access to automobiles or cannot afford to maintain them.  In a tight labor market, employers throughout the Chicago region are looking to improve job access by developing flexible transportation options.…

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Oct 27, 2023
Turnover is costly for employers. Often, a lack of reliable and practical transportation for employees is a major contributor to annual turnover rates. This spreadsheet tool allows businesses to calculate the potential reduction in turnover costs by investing in a transportation solution to help employees access the workplace. The tool was developed by Boston Consulting Group, who provided MPC with pro-bono support to help implement the transportation equity recommendations from Our Equitable Future.

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Oct 27, 2023
Interim watershed plan report for the Trim Creek watershed.

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC's first-ever Trivia Night hosted free beer, a buffet, a surprise appearance by WTTW'S Geoffrey Baer, host of the "10 That Changed America" series; and, of course, hand-picked trivia questions from the great minds of your favorite urban planning and policy organization.

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Jan 12, 2005
Troubled Waters is the result of a collaborative study funded by The Joyce Foundation. This report focuses on the increasing need to address the water supply in Illinois, taking a statewide look at the key issues, challenges and opportunities. Today’s event will provide an opportunity to hear expert analysis and recommendations for ensuring clean, abundant water for future generations of Illinoisans.

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Oct 27, 2023
Helen Cameron, owner, Uncommon Ground restaurant in Chicago, discusses the restaurant's rooftop garden, the first certified organic rooftop farm in the nation.

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Jan 1, 2009
Employer-assisted housing (EAH) is a term used to describe a variety of housing benefits employers can offer to help their workforce afford homes. An EAH program can be a costeffective way to help improve employee recruitment, retention, productivity and morale, thereby improving the employer’s bottom line. This publication explains employer-assisted housing and provides ten case studies: American Family Life Assurance Company (Aflac) Applied Materials, Inc. Citizens Financial Group, Inc. CVS/Caremark Harley-Davidson Motor Company Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck (formerly Hatch and Parent) Northrop Grumman Corp. The Schwan Food Company System Sensor University of Chicago and University of Chicago Medical Center.

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Oct 27, 2023
In places where rent is rising quickly, rent stabilization can help keep people in their homes. This one-pager explains rent stabilization. 

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Oct 27, 2023
Summary Direct aldermanic power toward the community good, not against it. Unfettered aldermanic prerogative—the custom in Chicago’s City Council to allow each alderman to direct zoning and permit decisions within his or her ward—perpetuates segregation, creates disparities in how we invest in communities and invites political corruption. As a result of this abuse, over the past year Chicago has experienced a federal complaint and lawsuit against the city, proposed legislation to curb its excesses, and an FBI investigation into two longstanding aldermen. The city needs systemic changes to upend this system, but first, note that these changes only work in…

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Oct 27, 2023
Go to Up To Code >> A group of south suburban municipalities from the Chicago region are working together to combat neighborhood decline and blight. These communities are working with regional housing experts to test and implement cross-border strategies that will build municipal capacity to maintain the quality of investor-owned properties. Go to Up To Code >>

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Jan 25, 2024


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Jul 8, 2014
The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has long emphasized the importance of supporting quality development near transit. As part of that support, MPC engages communities in shaping their local vision through our Corridor Development Initiative. This report details the results of that community engagement process and points the way toward securing equitable development in Chicago's Uptown neighborhood. Read more about the Uptown Corridor Development Intiative. >> Read the report's appendix, including all development proposals and full survey results. >>

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Jan 23, 2024


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Sep 10, 2017
Dan Egan and Monica Eng discuss the perils the Great Lakes face—and the ways they can be restored and preserved for generations to come.In partnership with Alliance for the Great LakesSponsored by Bell's BrewerySupported by CAN TV and WBEZ

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Oct 27, 2023
Communities too often are put in the position of reacting to a development proposal, rather than working to attract investment that fits the local vision. The Metropolitan Planning Council is reversing this dynamic through the Corridor Development Initiative (CDI), a three-part, participatory planning process that helps local residents understand issues such as density, affordable housing, mixed-use design, and the true cost of development, while establishing priorities to guide future development. The meeting series described in this report is a modification of CDI in the city of Aurora for its Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy Area.

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Jun 4, 2009
In 2008, Chicago Ald. Sharon Dixon (24th Ward), in partnership with MPC and Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), hosted the Lawndale Corridor Development Initiative (CDI), a series of three community meetings in Lawndale. The goal was to identify community interests and concerns about development in the neighborhood on Chicago’s Southwest Side, and work with architects and developers to create realistic concept plans for new development. The data, discussions, interviews, and recommendations from all three meetings will are compiled into a final report.

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Oct 27, 2023
In 2009, Chicago Ald. Rey Colón (35th Ward), in partnership with MPC, hosted the Logan Square Corridor Development Initiative (CDI). A series of three community meetings, the goal of the Logan Square CDI was to create a set of development priorities for Milwaukee Avenue and arm residents with an understanding of development financing and design to enrich their vision for development along the corridor.

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Jul 2, 2020
Across the country, drinking water is getting more expensive. Aging infrastructure, resource scarcity, pollution, population change, and a host of other factors all contribute to escalating water rates. From 2010 to 2019, the price of water service increased by over 57% in 30 major U.S. cities. At the same time, household income has been essentially stagnant, particularly for working class wages, and a growing number of households will find their water bills unaffordable as water rates continue to rise.  Water Burden Defined: The percentage of a household’s income that goes toward paying water bills. Water affordability is a nuanced issue. Solutions…

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Sep 12, 2013
     Preview the contents. To address the rising cost of water and the need to conserve limited resources, the DuPage Water Commission (DWC) created a Water Conservation and Protection Program. The purpose of the WCAPP is to provide all water users in DuPage County with a consistent message about water conservation and provide DWC customers with the tools needed to be good stewards of our finite water supply. More information can be found at PreservingEveryDrop.org. As part of the implementation of the WCAPP, each community in DWC’s service area has a designated water conservation coordinator. This document is a compilation of…

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Oct 27, 2023
On May 19th the Metropolitan Planning Council, Natural Resources Defense Council, Elevate Energy and Equity Legal Services came together for a discussion about how COVID-19 has exposed vulnerabilities in our water systems when it comes to flooding and water quality—and how economic recovery can include investments that put people to work solving these challenges in communities statewide. Check out the livestream recap of the first event of the series in case you missed out. You can also view the recap for two related events from May 5th, and May 12th about how to ensure Illinois’ water resilience, now and post-COVID-19. For a PDF of…

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Apr 5, 2020
The Metropolitan Planning Council, Natural Resources Defense Council, and Elevate Energy  got together on May 5th to discuss how water fits into stimulus and recovery efforts, and how Illinois can leverage these opportunities to maintain its water assets today and for future generations. Check out the livestream recap of the first event of the series in case you missed out. You can also view the recap for two related events from May 12th, and May 19th about how to ensure Illinois’ water resilience, now and post-COVID-19. For a PDF of the Water Resilience Event PowerPoint Slides

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Oct 27, 2023
The Metropolitan Planning Council, Natural Resources Defense Council, and Elevate Energy got together on May 12th for a discussion about water rate affordability in Illinois, the challenges associated with water shutoffs and reconnections, what’s happening in Illinois and neighboring states, and how to avoid these issues altogether in the future. Check out the livestream recap of the second event of the series in case you missed out. You can also view the recap for two related events from May 5th, and May 19th about how to ensure Illinois’ water resilience, now and post-COVID-19. For a PDF of the Water Resilience Event PowerPoint Slides

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May 11, 2019
People increasingly struggle to stay in East Garfield Park, according to data from the Institute for Housing Studies at DePaul University and the Metropolitan Planning Council.

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Oct 27, 2023
In September of 2020, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) partnered with the City of Chicago on the pre-planning phase of We Will Chicago, the first citywide planning initiative since the 1960s. If done well, this plan can create an inclusive vision for Chicago, encouraging neighborhood growth and vibrancy, while addressing long-standing social and economic inequities.

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Sep 12, 2014
Full details: https://metroplanning.org/events/roundtable/detail/307Illinois has more units of local government than any state in the nation, including 1,452 road and bridge districts, 865 school districts, 333 library districts and 21 street lighting districts, in addition to hundreds of townships and municipalities. This surplus can lead to duplication and inefficiency in delivering quality services.How can we change this? How are some communities creatively and efficiently meeting the needs of residents? In the greater Chicago region, we have seen both an increase in collaboration between governments, as well as a growing interest in consolidation. Findings from the Illinois Local Government Consolidation Task Force…

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Oct 27, 2023
Welcome Home: Housing Our Community brings together mayors, developers, residents, and business people to talk about local solutions to housing - a growing crisis in our towns, in our region, and in our state.  This video is intended to help your town begin a constructive dialogue about how best to create or preserve homes affordable to those who live and work in your community and that fits the character of your neighborhoods. Welcome Home underscores the value of quality housing options while shedding light on supply and demand issues throughout the Chicago region. We hope you will use this resource to initiate…

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Oct 27, 2023
MPC Board of Governors Chair King Harris welcomes guests to the 2011 Annual Luncheon. 

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Oct 27, 2023
Through generating innovation and momentum, our cities can inspire the private, public, and third sectors to take informed action on pressing issues. So, what is the role of our cities in combatting the global challenge of climate change?    Our expert panelists will challenge the audience to reflect on the role of cities as key drivers of sustainable and equitable climate success. We’ll hear a global perspective on the need for city-based actions. We’ll explore the role of the private sector in accelerating public plans. We’ll look to local advocates for inspiration on what change is possible. And we’ll learn about the City of Chicago’s sustainability initiatives. Through generating thought and action from diverse perspectives, this multi-sector panel will help us…

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Oct 27, 2023
This video, created by the young adult media makers at Free Spirit Media, documents a sliver of the public outreach completed by Great Rivers Chicago to find out how Chicagoans think the Calumet, Chicago and Des Plaines rivers should look and feel in the future.Learn more about Great Rivers Chicago at http://greatriverschicago.com/index.htmlGreat Rivers Chicago is an initiative of the City of Chicago and Metropolitan Planning Council, in partnership with Friends of the Chicago River, Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning and many others. Our public outreach is informing a vision and action agenda due out in June 2016.We're grateful to ArcelorMittal,…

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Oct 27, 2023
Kendra Freeman, Director of Community Development and Engagement, explains what is a Corridor Development Initiative (CDI) as we kick off a new project in Rogers Park in partnership with 49th Ward Office of Maria Hadden and CityOpen Workshop on October 1, 2020. www.metroplanning.org/rogerspark 

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Aug 11, 2012
A family in Oak Park is installing one of the first home graywater re-use systems in the state of Illinois.

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Oct 27, 2023
While America is a producer of cutting-edge software, has some of the best universities in the world, and boasts world-class hospitals, some of its technology for moving goods from one place to another is stuck in the 19th century. In this report, which aired on the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer on April 22, 2009, PBS correspondent Rick Karr explores the problems with America's aging freight rail infrastructure. While European nations have upgraded their train tracks, some American freight train crews, like the one Karr follows in Chicago, have to change the track switches by hand and move at less than…

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Nov 5, 2021
Regardless of what mode you use, every trip you take begins and ends with walking or rolling. Whether it’s going just a few feet to get in a car or trekking a half-mile to the nearest ‘L’ station, the pedestrian is the most essential user of the transportation system. However, pedestrian infrastructure often feels like an afterthought in much of the region - like something local governments do out of obligation, rather than a genuine interest in improving walkability. Even a relative “walker’s paradise” like Chicago has major deficiencies in its sidewalk network and challenges for its diverse populations. There has…

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Oct 27, 2023
Watch the recording of this event here.

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Jun 4, 2021
2020 was the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The ADA advances equal access for people with disabilities. One under-utilized component of the ADA is a requirement that units of government with more than 50 employees conduct an inventory of physical barriers to access in the public right-of-way, and make an ADA transition plan to remove them. Despite the federal requirement, transition plans are uncommon. And as a result, many barriers to access still exist. A national study of 401 government entities found that only 13% had transition plans readily available. But how is the Chicago region doing? The Metropolitan…

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Dec 8, 2021
This report is a first-of-its-kind analysis of Black movers into and out of the Cook County area, adding nuance to conventional wisdom about out-migration in Illinois, especially among Black residents. A companion Data Points blog offers further insight into findings from the report. 

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Oct 27, 2023
Download publication The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has long emphasized the importance of supporting quality development near transit. As part of that support, MPC engages communities in shaping their local vision through our Corridor Development Initiative (CDI). This report details the results of that community engagement process and points the way toward securing equitable development in Chicago's Woodlawn neighborhood. Read more about the Woodlawn Corridor Development Initiative.>> Read the report's appendix, including all development proposals and full survey results.>>

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Jun 12, 2011
When one reads "radioactive material" and "groundwater" in the same sentence, it is easy to get a little nervous. Yet many people don't realize that trace levels of radioactive materials, or "radionuclides," are found naturally in some of the deep bedrock aquifers many of us in the Chicago area rely on for drinking water. These elements, most commonly the isotopes of Radium-226 and Radium-228, "occur naturally in rock formations deep below the surface of the earth and enter the deep aquifer water supply by bonding with the mineral deposits in the water," explains David Heyden, who has become quite familiar…

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Apr 5, 2011
Youngstown Mayor Jay Williams shared this video, which explains the work of the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation (YNDC), as part of his presentation at the final roundtable in MPC and Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning's series on implementing the GO TO 2040 plan.

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning & Land Use Assessment: Meeting 6 Agenda

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning & Land Use Assessment: Meeting 6 Minutes

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning & Land Use Assessment: Meeting 6 Presentation

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning & Land Use Assessment: Phase I Definitions

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning & Land Use Assessment: Steering Committee Meetings

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Nov 9, 2023
The goal of Phase I was to determine built environment outcomes on which to base the assessment and develop a methodology to test whether those outcomes are impacted by zoning and land use. The Steering Committee developed and agreed on key definitions of equity, sustainability, and public health to guide the creation of a list of prioritized outcomes. MPC and the Urban Institute used those outcomes to devise an analysis approach and identify key data sources. This approach was strengthened through a literature review and discussions with practitioners in other cities that have conducted impact assessments. Additionally, the Steering Committee,…

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Additional Zoning Processes

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment All Zoning Process Diagrams

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Detailed Timelines

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Focus Group Members

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Historical Acknowledgements

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Historical Acknowledgements

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Phases Objective Schedule 

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Simplified Zoning Diagram

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Sep 5, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 1 (Agenda)

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Sep 5, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 1 (Minutes)

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Sep 5, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 1 (Presentation)

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Sep 5, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 2 (Agenda)

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Sep 5, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 2 (Minutes)

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Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 2 (Presentation)

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Sep 5, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 3 (Agenda)

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Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 3 (Minutes)

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Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 3 (Presentation)

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Sep 5, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 4 (Agenda)

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Sep 5, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 4 (Minutes)

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Sep 5, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 4 (Presentation)

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 5 (Agenda)

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 5 (Minutes)

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Meeting 5 (Presentation)

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Committee Steering Committee Meetings

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Oct 27, 2023
Zoning Assessment Steering Committee Members

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Oct 27, 2023
Introduction — regulating only bulk, use and density — that its application results in negative unintended consequences for local communities. Mayor Richard M. Daley's effort to update the 45-year-old code creates the perfect opportunity to inject new life and vitality into Chicago's neighborhoods. A new code can positively guide the forces of development by encouraging expanded housing options, urban design guidelines, transit-oriented development and neighborhood parks and open space. The number of zoning amendments — nearly 1,000 each year — is the best indicator of the inadequacy of the current code. Local development skirmishes, often led by organized community groups,…

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Feb 11, 2005
Over a decade ago, New York Post reporter Roberta Brandes Gratz inspired community leaders across the country with the The Living City. She contended that neighborhood redevelopment techniques were having a much greater impact on the revival of cities than far more costly strategies such as building sports stadiums.

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Oct 27, 2023
This 1950s booklet was produced by the railroads that then owned Chicago Union Station to promote the terminal's  modern amenities and luxurious cross-country trains. When the station was at its peak, it boasted everything from a women's lounge and nursery to a jail. Today, this piece serves as an inspiration for both the transportation and Placemaking enhancements planned in the Chicago Union Station Master Plan. Thanks to David L. Phillips at TranSystems for hunting this down and scanning it.

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Jan 5, 2000
Quarterly Report System Sensor Employer-Assisted Housing Program

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Oct 27, 2023
With a robust business community, committed local leaders, and a rebounding economy, northeastern Illinois is well-positioned to make significant headway on a long list of challenges that are critical to our future viability: threats to our supply of clean water, growing traffic congestion on our roads and rails, and a generation of children not receiving the quality of education they need to compete.

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Oct 27, 2023
The 2009 Burnham Award for Excellence in Planning given annually since 1988 to recognize superior plans that have resulted in sensible growth and development in the Chicago region was presented to Chicago Metropolis 2020. Since the release of their 1999 landmark report Chicago Metropolis 2020: Preparing Metropolitan Chicago for the 21st Century, the business and civic leaders driving Chicago Metropolis 2020 have advocated for better regional planning and smarter investments in transportation, community development and housing, and the regions people. Among the groups accomplishments are the following: . Wrote the legislation and led the effort to create the consolidated Chicago…

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Dec 4, 2011
Daunting is the fact that 200,000 Chicago residents left the city since the 2000 Census. Even more concerning is that nearly 89 percent of them were African-American.  This loss in the city was accompanied by strong African-American growth in the suburbs, particularly in the far south and southwest. Read a detailed assessment of this shift in this blog post. The data this map is based on is available as a PDF or Excel spreadsheet (XLSX).

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Oct 27, 2023
Data from the 2010 Census shows that the collar counties are growing much faster than the inner communities, which represents a shift from Lake Michigan water to other sources, primarily groundwater.  This map shows that the fastest-growing communities are mostly outside of the area that pumps Lake Michigan water.  Read more in this blog post.

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Oct 27, 2023
Metropolitan Planning Council's 2011 Burnham Award for Excellence in Planning is awarded to Magellan Development Group for their Lakeshore East master plan.

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May 7, 2011
Tom Mars, Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, Walmart U.S., discusses Walmart's plans for new, smaller format stores in urban Chicago. Vice Chair of MPC's Board of Governors Jesse H. Ruiz, a partner with Drinker, Biddle & Reath, moderated the conversation. Andrew J. McKenna, Sr., chairman of Schwarz Supply Source, Inc., and chairman of McDonald's Corporation, introduced the discussion.

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Oct 27, 2023
Stakeholders discuss the importance of regional cooperation and what MPC is doing to advance shared goals in the Chicago/Gary/Milwaukee mega-region.Featuring (in order of appearance):* Leigh Morris, Senior V.P., Northwest Region Development, Indiana Economic Development Center* Antonio Riley, Midwest Regional Administrator, U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development* David Mekarski, Village Administrator, Village of Olympia Fields, Ill.* Bill Masterson Jr., Publisher, The Times Media Company* Leana Flowers, Chair, Bronzeville Retail Initiative* John Norquist, President and CEO, Congress for the New Urbanism (and former Mayor of Milwaukee)* Ellen Alberding, President, The Joyce Foundation

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