Posted on January 21, 2011 1:41 PM
January 21, 2011
Table of Contents
Economic Club. Today I spoke at the Economic Club of Chicago and would like to thank Adele Simmons of Chicago Metropolis 2020 for making this event possible. She was a fellow panelist, along with Kevin Willer of Google and Paul O'Connor of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. My intention was to describe why our region's business community should support CMAP and GO TO 2040 -- because, put simply, implementing the new comprehensive plan is vital for our seven counties' economic future. As confirmation of that, at the Economic Club we previewed a new, independent economic analysis by RW Ventures, LLC (with support from The Chicago Community Trust), titled Economic Impacts of GO TO 2040. The Trust will release that report officially on Monday, and we will link to it on our website and in next week's mail.
MetroPulse on YouTube. You can now see the first in a video tutorial series for help in using the extensive new MetroPulse data indicators system, which is a collaboration of CMAP and the Trust. The first YouTube clip is aimed at government officials and features Mayor Leon Rockingham of North Chicago. In coming weeks, we will post tutorials for researchers and the general public. Or you can view them all now at www.metropulsechicago.org.
CMAP Policy Updates. In related news, this week our Policy Updates blog featured a post on how decision-making can be improved through the integration of education, economic, and workforce development data -- CMAP is currently developing a new data portal as part of the MetroPulse website that will do just that. Policy Updates also alerted readers to a new report on the benefits of regional industry clusters, as well as the recent launch of the new American FactFinder website.
CMAP at TRB. I will attend this year's Transportation Research Board (TRB) Conference in Washington, D.C. next week. In several panels, I will discuss balancing freight needs in livable urban areas (Event #306), how to use public input to inform planning and investment decisions (Event #380), and freight movement within mega-regions (Event #751). I will also be accepting an award on behalf of the agency from TRB's "Communicating Concepts with John and Jane Q. Public: Sustainability and Livability" competition for our GO TO 2040 "Invent the Future" phase of outreach from mid-2009 (Event #533).
GO TO 2040 roundtable. On February 1, CMAP and the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) will co-host the first in a four-part series of roundtables on GO TO 2040. At "We Have a Plan: Now What?", I will provide an overview of the plan and share success stories from other regional efforts in the Midwest. Moderated by MPC president MarySue Barrett, the event will also feature speakers from the Northwest Indiana Regional Planning Commission and the City of Youngstown, OH.
Upcoming water events. On January 26, Openlands and MPC will co-host "Letting it All Soak In: Nature's Role in Protecting Water Resources" from noon to 1:30 p.m. On February 4, the Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) will host a free day-long workshop on addressing future costs within the water industry, "Navigating the Infrastructure Replacement Era," at Willis Tower. Attendees must RSVP by January 24 for the CNT event.
APA networking. On January 27, the Illinois Chapter of the American Planning Association will host a networking event at JAK's Tap from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. To RSVP, email email@example.com by January 21 with the number of years of experience you have or if you are currently a student.
Urban Innovation Symposium. On February 4, the Urban Planning and Policy Student Association at the University of Illinois - Chicago (UIC) will hold the first annual "Urban Innovation Symposium." Registration closes on January 24.
CW Conference. On March 5, "Wild Things, a Chicago Wilderness Conference for People and Nature" will be held at UIC. Early registration ends January 30.
Save the Date: Lawn Care workshop. On March 23, a one-day workshop, "Natural Lawn Care for Landscape Professionals and Municipalities," will occur at Oakton Community College in Des Plaines.
Other News and Announcements
CMAP in the news. You can now listen to my January 9 interview with Stew Cohen from STAR 105.5 FM online. We discussed what the future will look like for northeastern Illinois suburbs. Chicago Weekly also wrote about the growing popularity of urban farming and mentioned the GO TO 2040 section "Promote Sustainable Local Food." The Riverside/Brookfield Landmark wrote an article about our newest Board member, President Michael Gorman of the Village of Riverside.
Spotlight on Green Communities. The Village of Downers Grove anticipated distributing 200 rain barrels to interested residents in May 2010. Interest in the program exceeded all expectations and with the help of over 20 community volunteers, 540 rain barrels were distributed to homeowners throughout the Village. Read more about Downers Grove's rain barrel program.
ISC case study. The Institute for Sustainable Communities (ISC) compiled a resource guide for local leaders to complement Sustainable Communities Boot Camp, a peer-learning session for senior government officials and key partners from regions awarded grants under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grant Program. The guide features an in-depth case study on GO TO 2040 on pages 22 to 29.
ETIP applications available. Employer Training Investment Program (ETIP) Incentive Program applications for FY11 are now being accepted by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.
TIP comment period. The CMAP Transportation Committee has released a conformity amendment to the FFY 2010-2015 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). This amendment is open for a public comment period of 30 days, from January 21, 2011 until February 22, 2011. Conformity analysis is part of the transportation modeling process that evaluates the impact of projects on air quality. On-road vehicle emissions are reviewed in certain years (currently 2016, 2020, 2030 and 2040) to determine that the region will reach national air quality goals. Please see the cover memo and list of conformity amendments. Please send comments regarding the TIP amendment in writing to the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, Attention: TIP amendments, 233 S. Wacker Dr., Willis Tower, Chicago, IL, 60606. Comments can also be made via e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone (312-386-8780).
Green Signals. This week, CMAP’s transportation operations blog featured "Smart Highways, Smarter Drivers," which directed readers to an overview of the active traffic management (ATM) project on Interstate 5 in Washington State.
Soles and Spokes. This week, CMAP’s bike-ped planning blog highlighted a new study, sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, on the effectiveness of Rectangular Rapid-Flashing Beacons (RRFB) on driver yielding behavior. The report concluded that RRFBs do work. We also promoted a series of webinars presented by the American Public Health Association on the ways transportation systems impact the health of both communities and individuals. Finally, we announced Winter Bike-to-Work Day and directed readers to a useful “how to” guide on winter biking. (Some brave CMAP staff participated in spite of 17 ̊ F temperatures!)
Water Resources Forum. On January 27, CMAP will host its second Water Resource Forum at 9:00 a.m. The free event is part of a series to follow up on key issues highlighted in the Water 2050 regional plan, this forum will focus on regional flooding and stormwater management. RSVP to Yesenia Ambriz (email@example.com or 312-386-8660).
GO TO 2040 LTA program accepting applications. CMAP is currently accepting applications to provide local technical assistance (LTA) for planning projects that help to implement GO TO 2040. Eligible projects include comprehensive plans, zoning ordinance revisions, specific studies on important local issues, and many others. Eligible applicants include municipalities, counties, interjurisdictional groups, and nongovernmental organizations. Applications can be completed with a very simple, easy-to-use form and are due next week by January 28, 2011. For more details and to download an application form, please visit www.cmap.illinois.gov/local-planning/call-for-projects. Please contact Pete Saunders (312-386-8654 or firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions.
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