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March 28, 2014

CMAP Weekly Update, 3-28-14

First Off…

Policy Updates.  CMAP analyzed Governor Quinn's recent budget address in light of agency and GO TO 2040 priorities.  We also described the Civic Federation's Fiscal Year 2015 budget road map for Illinois, which would eliminate the State's $5.4 billion backlog of unpaid bills, balance its budget, and reduce tax rates over the next five years. 
Federal freight activity. Yesterday, a letter CMAP co-signed with other major metro organizations on freight policy and funding was read into the record by U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer at the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. The letter calls on the federal government to establish a "Freight Trust Fund" and integrate metropolitan regions into the freight decision-making process. 
Save the date: Regional Roundtable.  I will provide opening remarks for a panel, "Regional Roundtable: What does a Regional Economic Development Strategy look like for Chicago?", on May 7 from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m.  The event is sponsored by the University of Illinois at Chicago's Great Cities Institute, and panelists will include representatives from economic development groups in Cook, DuPage, Lake, McHenry, and Will Counties.

Other News and Announcements

CMAQ in the news.  Construction restarted on a Route 38 railroad overpass in Geneva, which is part of the CREATE program, as described by the Kane County Chronicle.  In other news, CBS and Streetsblog described a public meeting held yesterday for the development of a new "L" stop at Washington Street and Wabash Avenue.  Both projects received partial funding through the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement program.
CMAP media tip sheet.  CMAP's latest tip sheet includes information on a fair housing report, national freight principles from major metro organizations, the Energy Impact Illinois program's final report, and more.
Private equity landlords.  A Crain's infographic examines how the purchase and rental of single-family homes by private equity firms in Chicago affects the housing market.  While buying has slowed, the long-term implications on the market and communities are unclear.  A previous Housing Policy Update also analyzed this trend.
Soles and Spokes.  We described the interim approval for the inclusion of bicycle traffic signals in the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.  A recent Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center report highlights the effectiveness of road diets in improving traffic safety.
Divvy data challenge.  Divvy announced the six winners of its Data Challenge, which invited the public to create visualizations of 2013 data.  Categories included best overall visualization and most creative.  Read more in Streetsblog
Big Ideas for Cities.  The National League of Cities, in partnership with the University of Chicago, will host "Big Ideas for Cities" on April 11 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Venue SIX10 (610 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago).  The event will feature discussion by mayors, including Chicago's, from across the country on ideas, innovations, and initiatives shaping the future of cities.

Local Technical Assistance

CMAP's 2014 municipal survey will be mailed and available electronically on April 1.  The biennial survey of municipal governments helps CMAP to identify the types of technical assistance projects that are provided through the Local Technical Assistance program; prioritize the development of new resources through the Local Ordinances and Toolkits program; inform policy analysis of such topics as freight and infrastructure development; and help track the implementation of GO TO 2040 by updating indicators of progress.  CMAP will accept responses through May 16.
The City of Berwyn, in partnership with CMAP and the Berwyn Development Corporation, is developing a parking management strategies plan for its Depot District.  CMAP's "Parking Strategies for Livable Communities" toolkit will help guide the project recommendations.  The Center for Neighborhood Technology, in an article for Next City, mentioned how the toolkit is being used to develop plans in Hinsdale and Chicago's Wicker Park-Bucktown neighborhood.
The Village of Carol Stream will host a public meeting for the development of its comprehensive plan on April 23 from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. at the Fire Protection District Headquarters (365 North Kuhn Road, Carol Stream).
The Architect's Newspaper blog described Chicago's Green Healthy Neighborhood plan, which was approved by the City Plan Commission last week.  The plan was developed for the neighborhoods of Englewood, Washington Park, and Woodlawn by the City's Department of Planning and Development with support from LISC/Chicago, Teamwork Englewood, the South East Chicago Commission, and Washington Park Consortium.
Pictures are available from a recent youth focus group session in Summit for the development of its comprehensive plan.


FLIP applications.  Applications are available for the 2014-15 Future Leaders in Planning (FLIP) program.  Participating high school students from throughout the region meet one Saturday per month to learn about issues that shape our region's economy and quality of life.  Priority deadline applications must be postmarked or emailed by Friday, May 30, 2014.  Contact Ricardo Lopez ( or 312-386-8766).
GO TO 2040 implementation poster.  CMAP has released Moving Forward 2013, our third annual GO TO 2040 implementation report poster.  Please grab a copy or two the next time you visit us. Contact Joey-Lin Silberhorn ( or 312-386-8814).
Performance-based funding.  Transparent evaluation criteria based on "performance-based funding" can improve transportation decision making, as described in a CMAP microsite and detailed analysis.


Carol Stream public meeting
April 23, 2014
6:00 to 7:30 p.m.
Fire Protection District Headquarters: 365 North Kuhn Road, Carol Stream
Hosted by Carol Stream and CMAP
Regional Roundtable: What does a Regional Economic Development Strategy look like for Chicago?
May 7, 2014
3:00 to 4:30 p.m.
Great Cities Institute: 412 South Peoria Street, Chicago
Hosted by the Great Cities Institute
GreenTown Chicago
May 21-22, 2014
Downtown Chicago
Supported by the City of Chicago, Institute of Cultural Affairs, and CMAP
Progress on the GO TO 2040 comprehensive plan roundtable
May 29, 2014 
12:00 to 1:30 pm.
Metropolitan Planning Council offices: 140 S. Dearborn, Suite 1400, Chicago
Hosted by MPC