Alternative Futures for ON TO 2050

Alternative Futures for ON TO 2050

Read a summary of the Alternative Futures engagement phase (April-August 2017), during which CMAP connected with more than 2,500 residents in 127 workshops and five topical forums, with another 61,000 providing input via interactive kiosks. Capping off these activities was a speech to the City Club of Chicago by CMAP executive director Joe Szabo.

Five Futures

Each Alternative Future's landing page had a video preview of its kiosk app and a brief survey.  Every month from April through August 2017, CMAP added a memo and detailed survey specific to one of the five futures.    

  • Changed Climate. By 2050, our climate will differ from today's in fundamental ways, forcing us to rethink how we build infrastructure, neighborhoods, and cities.  What can our region do to prepare? 
  • Walkable Communities. If today's trends continue, more people will want to live in walkable suburban and city neighborhoods by 2050.  How will our region look, and how can communities adapt to benefit from this trend? 
  • Innovative Transportation.  As transportation technology rapidly evolves, how will we harness it to improve our lives, local communities, and the region's economy?
  • Transformed Economy.  Between now and 2050, how can metropolitan Chicago improve access to education, employment, and critical resources to ensure individuals can achieve the American Dream and maintain a thriving regional economy? 
  • Constrained Resources.  In 2050, resources to fund infrastructure and vital public services at all levels of government are likely to diminish.  What can be done to give communities and the region the best chance at success?

The Alternative Futures are not mutually exclusive -- in reality, they share many of the same complex factors. And rather than predictions of what will happen, they are a set of assumptions about what could happen, intended to help inform the planning process for ON TO 2050.