Posted on February 26, 2010 3:31 AM
Weekly Update, 2-26-10
Indicators update. The Metro Chicago Information Center (MCIC) was granted $200,000 by The Chicago Community Trust to design and conduct a new Human Relations Survey for the CMAP region. The goal of this project is to develop data for the Regional Indicators project that will help measure social, economic, cultural, and environmental variables that affect quality of life. MCIC did the original data inventory for the Regional Indicators project as well.
Extension of SAFETEA-LU With the U.S. Senate adjourning today for the weekend, Congress has failed to pass a new extension of the surface transportation programs in SAFETEA-LU. The current extension ends at midnight on Sunday, February 28th and with that the Highway Trust Fund will shut down. The result of this inaction is that starting on Monday morning vouchers submitted to the FHWA and FTA to pay for costs incurred by the states or local transit agencies for obligations will not be paid and that USDOT employees, whose salaries are paid from the Highway Trust Fund, may be furloughed. While panic at this point in time is not warranted, I did want to keep everyone informed of the situation. We will monitor what happens next week when the Senate returns.
Mayors on TV. Thanks to the DuPage Mayors and Managers Conference for pointing out that Addison Community Television is airing a panel discussion to kick off a new series called "The Mayors." It features Mayor Larry Hartwig of Addison, Mayor Rodney Craig of Hanover Park, Mayor Gayle Smolinski of Roselle, and Mayor Ken Johnson of Wood Dale, discussing legislative agendas, municipal revenue, red light cameras, and western access to O'Hare Airport.
Air quality standards. The Journal Star published an article about an air quality forum sponsored by the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission. CMAP's Ross Patronsky spoke at the forum, which was held on February 10 in Peoria. For additional CMAP media coverage, visit our media archive, which is updated every other Tuesday.
New IEPA contest. The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) is sponsoring a new contest linked to their Particulate Matters to Me campaign. To participate, residents of Cook, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties must take a quiz and complete a form online. All submissions must be received by April 30, when three winners will be selected to win an Energy Star appliance or product valued up to $600.
GO TO 2040 brownbags. Thanks to everyone who came out today for our inaugural brownbag, which was an overview of the recently approved Northeastern Illinois Regional Water Supply/Demand Plan and an opportunity to brainstorm on how we can engage residents in water planning upon completion of GO TO 2040. The next brownbag session will be Friday, March 12, 2010, at 12:00 p.m. and will focus on youth, including an overview of current CMAP youth outreach efforts and how we can collaborate with partners on such initiativesmoving forward. To attend, please contact Joey Lin-Silberhorn (email@example.com or 312-386-8814), and view our upcoming partnership schedule.
In the GO TO 2040 blog. It was a busy week on the blog. On Monday, we warmed up with a delicious photo from a Wilmette coffee shop. Erin Aleman wrote about a plan to "decarbonize" the Loop on Wednesday, and on Thursday we posted excerpts from Patrick Reardon's remarks at the recent CMAP open house at which we welcomed the former Burnham Centennial Partners to the ranks of GO TO 2040 Partners. Anne Holub also wrote about the White House plan to eliminate all food deserts in the U.S. in just seven years.
Recovery blog. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and our local governments have obligated 100 percent of their ARRA appropriation, which totaled more than $935 million dollars. Read more about it on our blog, and don't forget to check out last week's Economic Recovery Update.
Soles and Spokes. CMAP's bike-ped planning blog features a local success story about the Village of Riverside's recent efforts to increase cycling, the upcoming Bike Summit in Washington, D.C., and news and recent reports from the Safe Routes to School National Partnership. We also blogged about a study done for Wisconsin, which concludes that "bicycling contributes nearly $1.5 billion to Wisconsin's economy every year."
Urbanophile on TIGER. Urbanophile's Aaron Renn published an interesting analysis on the recipients of the U.S. Department of Transportation's TIGER grant program.
Win "Beautiful City" tickets. Answer five quick questions for a chance to win a pair of tickets to the play "Beautiful City," opening at the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs DCA Storefront Theater on March 4. The play, written by Canadian playwright George F. Walker, is a "darkly comic fable about urban developers, criminals, law enforcement, and even a witch, all fighting for the soul and vision of a city." Sounds sort of like "Daniel Burnham meets Wicked." Thanks to DCA for providing two pairs of tickets for the giveaway, with the two winners to be selected randomly.
Save the date: Housing event. On April 28, 2010, a workshop is being hosted in response to upcoming changes relating to fair housing issues. "Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing: Identifying the Barriers and Finding Solutions" is designed for municipal and county leaders, Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) administrators, and elected officials. Participants will learn how to create Racial Impact Assessments for their communities. They will also learn about successful programs and policies designed to address fair housing concerns. The workshop runs from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the University of Illinois - Chicago. Participants can register online, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 866-794-3340.
Reminder: Planning workshop. CMAP will be the site of a workshop and focus group, "Developing Agent-Based Models for Urban Planning" on March 5, 2010, from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Attendees will learn how to use the NetLogo simulation program, and their feedback will be used to design software especially for urban planning. Space is limited to 16. RSVP to Dr. Moira Zellner (email@example.com or 312-996-2149).
Project Notifications. CMAP issues a monthly Project Notification to apprise state legislators, local government officials, and other interested parties of applications for federal and state grants that may have an impact on their communities. The most recent Project Notifications are available online. For more information, please contact Jamie Krell (firstname.lastname@example.org or 312-386-8658).
UIC speaker series. On March 1, Dr. Dan Sperling from the University of California, Davis will give a talk on the sustainability of a future with two billion cars, which is where we are currently headed. Dr. Sperling will address the roots of the problem and the roles that innovation, policy, and research can play in helping create a more sustainable future. Part of the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Engineering Paul Chung Distinguished Lecture Series, the talk is from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. at 807 S. Morgan Street in Chicago. Click here for more information.
Staff Progress Report. Our 2nd quarter progress report based on our FY 2010 work plan is now available online.