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May 3, 2013
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CMAP Weekly Update, 5-3-13

Among the highlights from CMAP executive director Randy Blankenhorn, the CMAP Board and Local Coordinating Committee meet on Wednesday, May 8, the RTA and CMAP are calling for local planning project applications (deadline: June 26), new Policy Update describes Cook County's economic agenda and recent news from Springfield, the APA has posted its video about CMAP's recent national award, and there is a new edition of the Illinois Innovation Index. Subscribe to get Weekly Updates by e-mail.

First Off...

CMAP meetings. The CMAP Board will meet at 9:30 a.m. next Wednesday, May 8, 2013. The Local Coordinating Committee will meet prior to the Board at 8:30 a.m. (not at its normal 8:00 a.m. meeting time).  

Call for Projects: Local Technical Assistance and Community Planning Programs. Planning assistance and grants for local projects across metropolitan Chicago are now available through the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) Community Planning Program and CMAP Local Technical Assistance Program at Proposed local planning projects should implement recommendations of the GO TO 2040 comprehensive regional planApplications are due Wednesday, June 26 at noon.  An informational session will be held at CMAP (233 S. Wacker Drive, Suite 800, Chicago) on Wednesday, May 15 from 10:30 a.m. to noon. RSVP with Yesenia Ambriz ( or 312-386-8660) to attend in-person or via webinar.  Contact Erin Aleman ( or 312-386-8816) to be added to our LTA distribution list.  Join the conversation -- we will be tweeting application and program information using #CMAPLTA.

Policy Updates.  We described Cook County's recently released economic development agenda, Partnering for Prosperity -- eight of the nine agenda strategies directly align with GO TO 2040 recommendations.  We also covered recent news from Springfield, including the passage of pension reform legislation in the Illinois House of Representatives. 

APA award video.  The American Planning Association produced a short video about CMAP for its National Planning Excellence Award for a Planning Agency.  CMAP was also featured in the APA magazine Planning.  Thanks again to the many CMAP partners who helped our region earn this special honor.

Other News and Announcements

LTA Updates.  Among recent highlights from CMAP's LTA program:

  • The recently adopted Riverside Central Business District plan was described in the Riverside-Brookfield Landmark, which also voiced support in an editorial
  • The Chicago Tribune and Palatine Patch covered the recently completed Homes for Changing Region project that involved the Northwest Suburban Housing Collaborative (Arlington Heights, Buffalo Grove, Mount Prospect, Palatine, and Rolling Meadows).  The housing plan was produced in partnership with CMAP, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC), and Metropolitan Mayors Caucus.
  • On Tuesday, the City of Northlake Plan Commission voted to send its draft comprehensive plan to the City Council for adoption later this month.  
  • The Village of Bensenville's Board of Trustees unanimously approved a memorandum of understanding to update its comprehensive plan with support from CMAP. The Village's Community Development Commission, which met to kick off the project on April 22, will serve as the steering committee.
  • The Wednesday Journal described the new Community Sustainability Report Card, which tracks implementation progress for Oak Park's and River Forest's environmental sustainability plan, PlanItGreen.  CMAP assisted with data aggregation and indicator analysis for the report card. 
  • The New Lenox Patch previewed this week's public workshop for input on the draft U.S. Route 30 corridor implementation plan.
  • The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) Office of Water Resources has partnered with CMAP and the Center for Neighborhood Technology on a water loss evaluation project to better understand challenges faced by public water supply operators.  CMAP's Tim Loftus will describe the project at three upcoming INDR meetings this month that will discuss proposed changes to the rules and regulations governing Lake Michigan water allocations and allow for additional public comment. 
  • The Village of Big Rock and Kane County will hold a "visual preference survey" public meeting for development of the village's comprehensive plan on May 13 from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. at the Big Rock Fire Department (48W863 E. 2nd Street).

A May update for all LTA projects is now available at

Rescheduled TMDL meeting:  May 8.  CMAP's is leading a two-year planning process to develop a total maximum daily load water quality implementation plan for nine lakes in southwestern Lake County:  Island, Woodland, Napa Suwe, Drummond, Fairview, Slocum, Tower, Timber, and Barrington.  The next meeting for development of the draft TMDL plan was rescheduled to May 8 at 2:00 p.m. at the Northern Moraine Wastewater Reclamation District (420 Timber Trail, Island Lake, map). 

Illinois Innovation Index.  This month's Illinois Innovation Index highlights changes in the region's science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) workforce.  The Index features new analysis from CMAP, which shows that our region has a smaller share of its total workforce in STEM occupations compared with the national average, and this proportion has declined during the past ten years.  However, some STEM occupations are growing at a faster rate than the national average, indicating potential regional specializations.

CMAQ in the news.  The Chicago Tribune described a recent court decision that will improve air quality at Union Station.  The article references new equipment used by Metra to shut down engines if they idle longer than 10 minutes -- this equipment was partially funded through CMAP's Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement program

Bus on Shoulder service expansion.  On Tuesday, Pace announced the expansion of its Bus on Shoulder program to include new trips on routes 755 and 855.  The original I-55 pilot and its expansions are partially funded through our CMAQ program.

West Union green streetscape. The Discovery Channel will feature West Union, Iowa's green pilot streetscape project on "Profiles Series" on Monday May 6 at 6:00 a.m. The segment will focus on the Elmhurst-based Conservation Design Forum's streetscape design and implementation. 

Water usage roundtable.  MPC will host a roundtable to release their new white paper, "Immeasurable Loss:  Modernizing Lake Michigan Water Use," on May 7 from noon to 1:30 p.m. at their offices (140 S. Dearborn, Suite 1400, Chicago). 

Census webinar.  The U.S. Census Bureau will offer "Current Population Survey & Survey of Income and Program Participation" on May 8 from noon to 2:00 p.m. CT.  Register for the free training webinar.

National Train Day.  On May 11 from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Amtrak will host a National Train Day event at Chicago's Union Station, which will celebrate the ways trains connect and impact communities.

WBC Logistics Hackathon.  World Business Chicago and partners, including CMAP, will host a "Chicago Logistics Hackathon" on May 18 from 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.  Participants will work with data to address regional transportation challenges, win cash prizes, and network with industry leaders.  For more information, contact Meagan ( or 312-201-4531).

CMAP Blogs

Soles and Spokes.  CMAP's bike-ped planning blog announced an upcoming public meeting of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District to discuss the partial, temporary closure of the Centennial Trail in connection with a McCook Reservoir flood control project. We also alerted readers to a free webinar on the economic benefits of bicycle and pedestrian projects.  We also  highlighted the recent launch of the Illinois Bike Transportation Plan website.


Congestion pricing campaign.  CMAP's computer-model analysis demonstrates the need for congestion pricing as a tool to manage traffic for faster, reliable travel times.  If implemented on five new GO TO 2040 construction projects, express-lane drivers during the morning rush would reach their destinations 31 to 66 percent quicker, at a modest additional cost.  Learn more at To support this effort, please contact CMAP principal planner Erin Aleman (312-386-8816 or

FLIP final event and applications.  Tomorrow, from noon to 2:00 p.m., students from CMAP's Future Leaders in Planning (FLIP) program will hold a Sustainability Fair at Rich East High School (300 Sauk Trail, Park Forest).  Applications are also available for next year's FLIP program. Students who will be sophomores, juniors, or seniors in the 2013-14 school year are eligible.  For more information, contact Ricardo Lopez ( or 312-386-8766).

EI2 rebates.  Energy Impact Illinois (EI2) is offering rebates up to $1,750 (an estimated 70-percent cost savings) for upgrades you can make to improve the comfort of your home.  For more information, contact Emily Plagman at  To see if you qualify for the rebate, please call 1-855-9-IMPACT.

ArcGIS workshops.  CMAP periodically offers a Two-Day ArcGIS Basic 10.1 Workshop, and dates are set for August 28 to 29, October 2 to 3, November 6 to 7, and December 18 to 19.  Attendance at each workshop is limited to five people, so register early.  The cost is $350.  To register, please contact Jan Drennan (

BRT station design competition.  The Chicago Architectural Club and Chicago Architecture Foundation, in partnership with the Chicago Department of Transportation, the Chicago Transit Authority, and Chicago Bus Rapid Transit Steering Committee have launched a new design competition for three stations in Chicago's planned BRT system.  Entries are due May 13, 2013.

Automation event.  Manufacturing and production efficiency will be among topics emphasized at the Automation Conference on May 14-15 at the Chicago Marriott O'Hare.  Register on-line for this education and networking event, which is geared to automation professionals across all industries involved in processing, manufacturing, and packaging.  

Stormwater utilities guide.  A new CMAP publication describes how local governments can use stormwater utilities to address local flooding and drainage problems.  For additional information, contact Jesse Elam ( or 312-386-8688).




FLIP Sustainability Fair
May 4, 2013
12:00 to 2:00 p.m.
Rich East High School:  300 Sauk Trail, Park Forest
Hosted by the Village of Park Forest and CMAP
More information

Berwyn zoning public kickoff meetings
May 8, 2013
6:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Berwyn Police Department:  6401 W. 31st Street, Berwyn

Saturday, May 11, 2013
10:30 a.m. to noon
Havlicek Elementary School:  6401 15th Street, Berwyn
Hosted by the City of Berwyn, Berwyn Development Corporation, and CMAP
More Information

County Green
May 23, 2013
7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
College of Lake County:  19351 W. Washington Street, Grayslake
Hosted by the College of Lake County
More information




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