A Plan for Pilsen and Little Village
Pilsen and Little Village are thriving urban neighborhoods located in Chicago's Lower West Side and South Lawndale community areas. While each neighborhood has its own unique history, culture, assets, and challenges, they also share many similarities. Both play important roles as vibrant centers of Mexican life in Chicago and the Midwest. Both serve as important job centers and have a significant portion of their land designated for industrial activity. And both share similar concerns and goals for the future. Among others, these include: improving and expanding access to parks and open space; promoting sustainable business and retail development; and expanding housing options.
Pilsen and Little Village each have powerful networks of community-based organizations with a long history of successfully working on these issues and improving the quality of life in these neighborhoods. Building upon each community's valuable assets, as well as past and current planning efforts, the City of Chicago's Department of Planning and Development (DPD) is leading an effort to draft a plan that will continue to address these important issues. Like DPD's previous Land Use Strategy planning initiative, the Pilsen and Little Village plan will work to better target public and private investments and develop policy recommendations that will guide decision-making and investments for years to come. The plan will complement each community's long-term physical, socio-economic, and cultural goals, as well as address a range of topics which may include parks and open space, bicycle and pedestrian routes, retail manufactoring, housing, and arts and culture. CMAP is providing staff planning support through its Local Technical Assistance (LTA) program and has contracted with the Pilsen Neighbors Community Council (PNCC) and Enlace Chicago to provide community outreach and engagement assistance in Pilsen and Little Village.
The planning process, which will last approximately 18 months, includes three phases. The first phase will involve an analysis of the existing conditions within the communities using information gathered through public meetings, stakeholder interviews, review of previous studies, and collection of maps and data. Phase two will focus on setting goals and priorities based on findings from the phase one analysis. The final phase will combine efforts from previous phases to create a plan and develop recommended policies intended to help achieve these goals.
The public will have several opportunities to participate in the planning process. The City of Chicago, in partnership with CMAP, will embark on a series of outreach meetings with community leaders, business representatives, and residents from Little Village and Pilsen to solicit and incorporate local input to the planning process. We invite you to participate in the upcoming events.
Kick-off meetings were held for the development of a plan for Pilsen and Little Village, led by the City of Chicago's Department of Planning and Development. Residents and stakeholders gathered at Dvorak Park on Monday, November 18, for a Pilsen workshop, and at Little Village Academy on Tuesday, November 19 for a Little Village workshop. The kick-off meetings, with support from the PNCC and Enlace Chicago, focused on parks, open space, and green infrastructure.
Jeanne Chandler, City of Chicago Department of Planning and Development (email@example.com or 312-774-6926)
Evelyn Zwiebach, CMAP Assistant Planner (firstname.lastname@example.org or 312-386-8637)
Ricardo Lopez, CMAP Outreach & Engagement Associate (email@example.com or 312-386-8766)