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$6M Streetscape Makeover Intends To Brighten Up Broadway

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The stretch of North Broadway in Uptown has its share of problems. A preliminary development plan for the area two years ago stated the area is "unfriendly to pedestrians" and "unattractive." Not to mention its "general lack of greenery," "aggressive panhandlers" and a lingering "threat of gang violence." But a new streetscape plan by the Chicago Department of Transportation wants to turn those problems around. CDOT recently unveiled renderings for a $6 million Broadway/Lawrence streetscape project at a neighborhood meeting this week. The plans are a step toward revitalization in the Uptown Entertainment District.
In addition to cosmetic upgrades — to the tune of repaving surrounding roads and new light poles, banners, planters, trees and curb bump-outs — a new "Racine Plaza" was debuted. Renderings of the plaza, which would sit outside the Riviera Theatre at Racine Avenue and Broadway, show an activated seating area with a stage and a ring-shaped sculpture.

Plans also include a "shared street" for Clifton Avenue between Lawrence Avenue and Broadway (like the one planned on Argyle Street) that would slow cars and provide a pedestrian island to cross Broadway.

Phase one of the project is scheduled to begin in spring 2015.

— Megan Graham
Uptown Entertainment District Plans Revealed: Plaza, Street Overhauls, More [DNAinfo]
Previous Uptown coverage [Curbed Chicago]