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Chicago Urban Planning

Garfield Green housing project, winner of global design competition, moves ahead

C40’s Reinventing Cities contest asked for green development projects that would fight climate change. Chicago’s winning project steps closer to breaking ground.

Chicago is hiring seven new city planners. Here’s why that matters.

A new, holistic strategy will put citizens at the center of development.

Will new legislation fix Chicago’s affordable housing crisis, or stymie development?

The "Development for All Ordinance" aims to increase affordable requirements and close developer loopholes.

How a new city-backed program will help Chicago developers go green

A Loop hotel conversion is the first project to take advantage of new financing.

Developers add taller residential towers to Michael Reese plan

The proposal includes high-rise housing, retail, a life sciences campus, a Metra stop... and no casino.

Chicago urban designer Emmanuel Pratt awarded MacArthur grant

Pratt takes a holistic approach to neighborhood revitalization on Chicago’s South and West sides.

How cleaning up Lincoln Yards, General Iron will transform the north branch

A look at ongoing efforts to reduce the environmental impact of steel mills, tanneries, and other heavy industry.

Chicago sidewalk inventory will help urban planners boost walkability

The data helps municipalities plan better infrastructure, bike paths, and policies.

How Chicago’s alley system could be a creative space

Alleys keep the city clean, but could they also be spaces for art studios and bike shops?

Neighborhood Opportunity Fund should be a model for other cities, study says

Researchers looked at the impact of the city’s neighborhood development tool

Lightfoot announces program to curb violence, beautify vacant lots

"Grounds for Peace" will restore 50 city-owned lots and provide job training for at-risk individuals.

Chicago’s new demographics: ‘A third San Francisco, two-thirds Detroit’

An interview with urbanist Pete Saunders on Chicago’s tale of two cities

Where should Chicago build its first casino?

Officials are considering sites near downtown, Midway airport, and even the old South Works steel mill

How aldermanic privilege shaped Chicago

‘Council courtesies,’ which Mayor Lightfoot wants to eliminate, has created a city ruled by 50 mini-mayors.

After a decade, Housing Department returns to address affordability, segregation

Mayor Lightfoot has tapped housing policy expert Marisa Novara to lead the City Hall department.

11 transformative ideas for Chicago transportation

From riverfront gondolas to Elon Musk’s O’Hare express, there is no shortage of bold ideas.

Top city planner regrets lack of progress on South Works, Michael Reese sites

Chicago Planning and Development Commissioner David Reifman announced his retirement on Monday.

How sheep, goats, and donkeys make O’Hare airport greener

The grazing herd helps reduce the use of gas-powered equipment and remove habitats for wildlife that shouldn’t live near an airport.

City moves on abandoned Goose Island rails for North Branch transitway

The move could clear a path for future transit options connecting downtown and Lincoln Yards.

Light rail and dedicated park space in discussion for changing North Branch corridor

The future of the evolving industrial district is taking shape.

City formally breaks ground on ‘312 RiverRun’ pedestrian trail

The upcoming elevated recreation trail will span nearly two miles in length

A look at the planned Lakeview Low-Line pedestrian path

After years of planning, the Lakeview Chamber of Commerce has finally unveiled a conceptual design

Obama Foundation will build its own parking garage for presidential center

The Obama Presidential Center will now occupy 35 acres of public parkland.

CTA has ‘no plans’ to extend Green Line to Jackson Park

Mass transit to the future Obama Presidential Center is not likely to happen anytime soon.

Open thread: Should the Green Line be extended to Jackson Park?

The Obamas have touted the presidential center’s potential economic impact, but what about transit?

City declares Western Avenue makeover complete

The $27 million project was completed one month ahead of schedule and on budget.

North Branch Corridor could open to new zoning uses by the end of the month

Legislation to redefine the area’s Planned Manufacturing Districts could be fully approved by the Chicago City Council as early as July 26th.

CDOT hosting meeting to discuss Wicker Park intersection improvements

The city agency will present plans to improve the infamous Damen, North, and Milwaukee intersection.

City to host final North Branch meetings ahead of big zoning vote

Five simultaneous public presentations to discuss the proposed zoning changes for the North Branch Industrial Corridor are scheduled for the evening of July 11th.

Where the ‘L’ is experiencing passenger crowding

The CTA has also offered suggestions on how to increase capacity along its most popular lines.

Rahm: Chicago public transit needs ongoing federal support

Mayor Rahm Emanuel wrote an editorial highlighting the CTA’s modernization for the New York Times.

Transformative zoning ordinance introduced for Chicago’s North Branch Corridor

The plan would establish "contemporary zoning regulations" for the previously industrial 750-acre riverfront corridor.

Jackson Park redevelopment would require more road closures

The Obama Presidential Center and overhauled Jackson Park Golf Course will see major changes made to traffic patterns.

How Chicagoans are using the Divvy bicycle sharing program

New figures from Divvy’s operator suggest that the program has helped members save money while helping small businesses make money.

Divvy expanding with another 40 stations in 2017

The city’s bike sharing program will add 400 more bikes to the system this year.

Map highlights low-stress bicycle routes throughout Chicago

The ‘Mellow Chicago Bike Map’ from Streetsblog Chicago and Chainlink users highlights safer routes for cyclists.

Sweeping downzoning measure for South Shore delayed

Alderman Leslie Hairston has suggested that the plan will be revisited and altered.

Chicago population density outpacing major metros

Numbers suggest that Chicago has become noticeable more dense in the last several years.

Lakefront Trail separation in Lincoln Park underway

Sections of the popular recreation trail will be closed or rerouted next week for construction.