Posted on October 22, 2010 3:02 PM
Weekly Update, 10-22-10
Table of Contents
GO TO 2040 photos and more. We've posted some great photos from the joint Board and MPO Policy Committee meeting and GO TO 2040 launch event. A selection of press coverage of the plan and event can be found at our Newsroom Archive, along with other CMAP media coverage. Thanks again to everyone who has supported the plan's development, and we are counting on you as the region moves forward with implementation. Media coverage this week included columns by Esther Cepeda for the Chicago Sun-Times and Ben Schulman for Gapers Block, as well as a radio interview (opens MP3 audio file) that I did with WCPT's Mike Nowak last Sunday. And our colleagues at the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) posted a story about the GO TO 2040 launch -- it is nice to see that level of support for the region's plan.
AMPO. Earlier this week, CMAP's Don Kopec was elected to the Board of Directors of the Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (AMPO), one of our national associations. Congratulations to Don, and we appreciate his willingness to serve in a leadership position to improve the nation’s and our region’s transportation infrastructure.
Tour great places. MPC marked the summer with a “What Makes Your Place Great?” contest encouraging Chicagoland residents to nominate their favorite “secret corner.” Now you can explore those special locations on a bus tour Saturday, October 30 beginning at 9 a.m. Tickets are $25 to $30 and can be booked through the Chicago Architecture Foundation.
Kennedy Expressway anniversary. On November 5, DePaul University's Chaddick Institute will host a reception and roundtable discussion to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy Expressway. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 312-362-5731 for the event, which will occur from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at 243 S. Wabash, Suite 900 in Chicago.
News and Other Announcements
What Our Water's Worth. MPC and Openlands have launched an informative new website intended to raise awareness about the value of water in northeastern Illinois and northeastern Indiana.
Clean Energy Challenge. With support from the U.S. Department of Energy, the Clean Energy Trust welcomes applicants for its Clean Energy Challenge, which will award $100,000 in cash and additional services to Illinois entrepreneurs engaged in renewable energy, next-generation transportation, smart grid, advanced batteries, green buildings, carbon abatement, water conservation and contaminant mitigation, energy information systems, energy efficiency, or alternative fuels. Applications are due December 3, 2010. See www.cleanenergytrust.org/events for details.
SSMMA grant.On October 20, the South Suburban Mayors and Managers Association (SSMMA) was awarded $2.4 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) Sustainable Communities Challenge Grantprogram. The grant will "strengthen the Southland through a redevelopment strategy that builds off existing and planned rail assets and related housing and economic development opportunities," according to the MPC.
TIGER II Planning grant.Also this week, in conjunction with the HUD announcement, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced75 new projects to receive nearly $600 million from the TIGER II competition. A grantof $2.8 million to the City of Barrington will fund 100 percent of the planning, designing and engineering of a grade separation at the U.S. Route 14 and Eastern Joliet & Elgin (EJ&E) Railway crossing.
TOD database. The Center for Transit-Oriented Development (CTOD) launched a web database that provides economic and demographic information for every existing and proposed "fixed guideway transit station in the U.S." as a tool for planners, developers, government officials, and academics. The database was developed under contract to the Federal Transit Administration (FTA).
National Community Planning Month. October is National Community Planning Month, which serves as a time for planners to celebrate their profession and help convey to the community what their profession represents. The American Planning Association and the Illinois chapter provide extensive information on the planning profession, as well as tools and resources.
Blue gold rush. Terry Savage wrote a column for the Chicago Sun-Times on the growing global need for water. Both GO TO 2040 and Water 2050 address ways we can manage and reduce water consumption within our region.
Spotlight on Green Communities. The newest spotlight focuses on the Village of Algonquin's water conservation outreach campaign, which helped decrease average peak water demand over the summer by two million gallons per day.
Green Signals. This week, CMAP’s transportation operations blog informed readers about a report, “Quantifying the Benefits of Coordinated Actuated Traffic Signal Systems,” by the Virginia Transportation Research Council. This report examines ways to quantify the benefits of coordinated actuated traffic signal systems.
Soles and Spokes. Last week, CMAP’s bike-ped planning blog alerted readers to a new factsheet, put out by the League of American Bicyclists, on rumble strips and their effects on comfort and safety for bicyclists. We also announced the launch of Walk Friendly Communities (WFC), a national recognition program to encourage towns and cities across the U.S. to establish or recommit to a high priority for safe walking.
South Side Health and Wellness. On October 24, the Chicago Humanities Festival will host a panel, The South Side Health and Vitality Studies: Body and Community Wellness. The panel will take place from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. at the University of Chicago's Mandell Hall.
Pedestrian Safety Workshops. On October 26 to 27 and October 28 to 29, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) experts will be conducting two two-day workshops, “Designing Streets for Pedestrian Safety,” in the Chicago area. Spaces are available for the workshop on October 28 and 29, prioritized for employees and consultants working on public right-of-way planning and engineering. Information about the workshops is posted at www.cmap.illinois.gov/bike-ped/pedestrian-and-bicycle-safety.
Safe Routes to School. November 1, 2010 at 5:00 p.m. is the deadline for communities applying for Safe Routes to School funds to submit a school travel plan to IDOT for review and comment, with the opportunity to resubmit a revised plan. More IDOT information about how to submit school travel plans and apply for funds is posted at http://www.dot.il.gov/saferoutes/saferouteshome.aspx.
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