Posted on August 27, 2010 2:03 PM
Weekly Update, 8-27-10
Table of Contents
Bike to Work Week. With a 52.8 percent staff participation rate, CMAP is the proud repeat winner -- three years straight, and four of the last five -- of the Active Transportation Alliance Bike to Work Week challenge category for public agencies with 25 to 99 employees. Thanks to all who participated by biking part of their commute.
Come join us: October 13 GO TO 2040 launch. I'd like to think we're judicious about sending repetitive messages, because we sincerely appreciate the time you take to keep up with CMAP activities. So I'll apologize in advance for several reminders that CMAP partners will get about our launch of the GO TO 2040 comprehensive regional plan at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, October 13, 2010. Earlier that day, the CMAP Board and MPO Policy Committee will vote on adoption of the plan. We would appreciate your RSVP by September 30 to email@example.com. I am pleased to announce that our location will be the rooftop of the Harris Theater at Millennium Park. This event will be to thank and inspire all who have contributed to the plan's development, and who will now help CMAP to lead its implementation.
SCI regional grant. On behalf of our consortium partners, CMAP submitted an application this week to HUD for the Sustainable Communities Initiative (SCI) Regional Planning Grant Program. The purpose of the Chicago region’s application is to advance the implementation of the GO TO 2040 comprehensive regional plan. Thanks to all of the consortium members and other partners who offered support to our application. Please see the abstract for more information.
Open space event. On Monday, August 30, 2010, a Forum on Parks, Open Space, and Nature will be held at The Field Museum. The event will give the public a chance to provide input on the America's Great Outdoors Initiative. I will be one of the panelists at the forum to discuss the importance of preserving and expanding open space in our region. Read more about GO TO 2040 recommendations in the section Expand and Improve Parks and Open Space. The forum begins at 5:30 p.m. and is free.
Burnham on PBS. On September 6, the one-hour documentary Make No Little Plans: Daniel Burnham and the American City will debut on PBS at 9:00 p.m. CST. Congratulations to the Archimedia Workshop on this nationwide exposure.
Model Water Conservation Ordinance and WaterSense webinar. On September 9, the Illinois chapter of the American Water Works Association (AWWA) will host a webinar on CMAP's Model Water Conservation Ordinance and WaterSense products. Speakers include Cary McElhinney of U.S. EPA Region 5, as well as CMAP's own Amy Talbot and Hala Ahmed. The hour-long webinar begins at noon and costs $15 for AWWA members and $25 for non-AWWA members.
Highway program comments. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) Division of Highways is seeking comments from regional planning organizations on the proposed 2012-17 multi-year highway program. Comments will be accepted until 5:00 p.m. on November 1. Also, at the following meetings, people may comment on specific projects that might be included in the program, the overall performance of the highway system, regional transportation priorities, and the effectiveness of the public outreach program:
- Monday, September 13, 3:00 p.m., Holiday Inn & Conference Center, 800 S. Route 31, Crystal Lake
- Thursday, September 16, 3:00 p.m., College of Lake County, 10351 W. Washington St., Building C, Grayslake
- Tuesday, September 21, 3:00 p.m., IDOT District I Emergency Traffic Control Center, 3501 S. Normal, Chicago
- Wednesday, September 22, 3:00 p.m., South Holland Community Center, 501 E. 170th St., South Holland
- Tuesday, October 5, 4:00 p.m., Lincoln Way High School, 1801 E. Lincoln Hwy., New Lenox
- Wednesday, October 6, 3:00 p.m., Holiday Inn, 4070 E. Main St., St. Charles
Other News and Announcements
Weatherization progress. The State of Illinois weatherized more than 30 percent of the 27,000 homes it planned to service through the federal stimulus program, reports Crain's Chicago Business. The state is now eligible for an additional $121 million in funding. The program supported 580 jobs in Illinois, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Weatherizing and retrofitting buildings is a great way to reduce energy consumption, as recommended in the GO TO 2040 section Manage and Conserve Water and Energy Resources.
Mixed-use development in the news. Crain's Chicago Business also printed an article about mixed-use development this week. I am quoted regarding the importance of offering residents compact access to retail, residential, and recreational options. Although the story describes a project that was voted down in St. Charles, I believe we will continue to see more development proposals that feature walkability as a central element.
APA public health and food systems survey. More and more municipalities and counties across the U.S. are including goals, objectives, and policies related to public health or food systems in their comprehensive plans and sustainability plans. The American Planning Association (APA) Planning and Community Health Research Center requests that municipal or county planning departments help to identify these plans and inventory the key issues they address by completing a brief online questionnaire. Results from this survey will provide valuable examples of how local governments are addressing and integrating these important, emerging topics in their comprehensive and sustainability planning efforts. To take the survey, visit http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/healthandfoodplanning. The APA will accept this input through September 10, 2010.
GO TO 2040 blog. This week’s Flickr photo features a jubilant jump into Lake Michigan to celebrate (nearing) the end of summer. Have photos of your favorite summer activities in the region? Add them to our Explore Northeastern Illinois Flickr pool.
Soles and Spokes. This week, CMAP’s bike-ped planning blog described important new improvements to Walk Score -- a website that ranks the walkability of locations around the country -- as well as the site’s new visualization tool (called “walkability heat maps”) and transit ranking tool, Transit Score. The blog also alerted readers in the area to the upcoming opportunity to give input to the federal government’s America’s Great Outdoors Initiative. As part of this initiative, public listening sessions will occur on two broad topics: parks, open space, and nature (at which I will be speaking), and health and the great outdoors. Finally, we also blogged about London’s aggressive new network of “cycling superhighways,” designed to serve commuters from outlying areas reach the city center.