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April 25, 2014

CMAP Weekly Update, 4-25-14

First Off...

Coastal management grant.  The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) awarded $1.6 million for environmental and education projects along Lake Michigan's shoreline and in the Millennium Reserve-Calumet region.  CMAP received $75,000, which will enable North Chicago, Winthrop Harbor, and Zion to include more extensive sustainability and natural resource recommendations in their upcoming comprehensive plans under development through our Local Technical Assistance (LTA) program.  IDNR is currently accepting applications for the next round of grants through its program. 

Save the date:  UIC Urban Forum.  The University of Illinois at Chicago will host its annual Urban Forum on September 18, 2014 from 8:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. at the UIC Forum (725 West Roosevelt Road, Chicago).  This year's theme is "The Return of the Neighborhood as an Urban Strategy."

NAFTA-NEXT.  This week, I discussed the importance of freight and need to invest strategically in our transportation infrastructure at a tri-national summit with Paul Fisher of CenterPoint Properties and the Supply Chain Innovation Network of Chicago.  The NAFTA-NEXT conference focused on economic drivers of the future and exploring how transportation, energy, and environmental infrastructure will work together in North America.  Read more in a press release from the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG).  CMAP co-signed a letter with SCAG and other major metro organizations on freight policy and funding.  It calls on the federal government to establish a "Freight Trust Fund" and integrate metropolitan regions into the freight decision-making process. 

Other News and Announcements

CMAP in the news.  The Franklin Park Herald-Journal described a local study to evaluate possible railroad grade separations in order to alleviate traffic delays from frequent train crossings.  CMAP's Alex Beata and Tom Murtha discussed the value of such projects and freight challenges our region faces in the article.  The Herald-News covered a new report on suburban greenhouse gas emissions, and CMAP's Jesse Elam highlighted actions local governments can take to be more sustainable.  Learn more in CMAP's climate adaptation toolkit.

Soles and Spokes.  We described the recently released Illinois Bike Transportation Plan, which is the first statewide bicycle plan.  Applications are due April 28 for the TIGER grant program, and a webinar is available to help applicants develop successful bicycle and pedestrian applications.

CMAP media tip sheet.  CMAP's latest tip sheet includes information on CMAP's analysis of the new TFIC transportation funding proposal, IL Route 53/120 corridor plan, Greentown Chicago conference, and more.

Transportation conference.  The German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest, Inc. will host "Energy-Efficient Transportation Systems in Chicago" on May 13 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the University of Chicago's Gleacher Center (450 N. Cityfront Plaza Dr., Chicago).  I will discuss the our region's transportation strengths and challenges during the morning session. Register on-line.

Sustainable Landscaping seminar.  DuPage County Stormwater Management and The Conservation Foundation will host a sustainable landscaping seminar on May 6 from noon to 4:00 p.m. at Cantigny Park (1s151 N Winfield Rd, Wheaton).  Representatives from municipalities, park districts, and other interested parties are asked to register in advance by emailing

Urban soil conference.  The Illinois Water Environment Association and partners will host "Soil in the City: Enhancing Urban Soils for Living Landscapes and Healthy Communities" from June 29 to July 2 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel (160 East Huron St., Chicago, IL).  The conference will focus on urban gardening, green infrastructure, and greening brownfields.  Register on-line.

Local Technical Assistance

CMAP is cosponsoring GreenTown Chicago on May 21-22, 2014 and is offering a limited number of complimentary admissions for municipal staff, as well as elected and appointed officials.  To RSVP, contact Berenice Vallecillos ( by next Wednesday, April 30.  Attendees can participate in an "LTA track" to learn about successful LTA projects from around the region in advance of our next call for LTA projects, which is set to open May 2 and close June 26.

The Suburban Life previewed this week's public meeting for the development of a comprehensive plan for the Village of Carol Stream.

Streetsblog described multiple transportation initiatives underway at UIC, including the development of a multimodal transportation plan

Municipal staff and elected officials are invited to attend a free form-based codes workshop on May 16 from 9:00 a.m. to noon at the CMAP offices.  Attendees will also learn about opportunities to apply for form-based code assistance through the next LTA call for projects.  Space is limited for this event, which is co-sponsored by CMAP and the Form-Based Codes Institute.  To RSVP, contact Stephen Ostrander (312-386-8696 or


Municipal survey.  CMAP has distributed its biennial municipal survey to the region's 284 municipalities and is seeking municipalities' responses by May 16.  

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.


Form-Based Codes workshop
May 16, 2014
9:00 a.m. to noon
CMAP offices:  233 S. Wacker Drive, Suite 800, Chicago
Hosted by the Form-Based Codes Institute and CMAP
More information

GreenTown Chicago
May 21-22, 2014
Downtown Chicago
Supported by the City of Chicago, Institute of Cultural Affairs, and CMAP
More information

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
More information