Next plan climate resilience strategy paper

Climate Resilience

Update: The Climate Resilience ON TO 2050 strategy paper is now available, and your feedback is welcome.  Please take a moment to answer questions below or send your thoughts, ideas or questions to

Climate change is affecting our communities

Northeastern Illinois has already experienced — and is projected to see even greater — changes in temperature and precipitation from climate change. In recent years, weather events have included record-breaking floods, heat, and droughts that affect the region's infrastructure, ecosystems, and economies. Flooding has led to major road, rail, and utility outages, sewer overflows, moldy and damaged properties, and disruptions to supply chains and local businesses. Drought and heat have caused severe pavement and railway buckling, derailing trains and damaging cars. Heat waves have caused illnesses, hospitalizations, and deaths. These projections may sound dire, but the region can take many actions to reduce potential negative impacts and prepare for a changing climate.

Metropolitan Chicago should prepare for and respond to climate changes.

A resilient region is one that proactively addresses climate changes. Resilient strategies can range from updating infrastructure designs to account for more extreme weather to promoting land use decisions that consider future climate impacts.

ON TO 2050 can help communities across our region build climate resilience.

Climate impacts do not affect all communities equally. The region's most vulnerable areas, including low-income communities, often bear a disproportionate burden of climate impacts. Geography also determines a community's exposure to climate effects. For instance, communities have greater exposure to flooding based on their underlying natural landscapes, infrastructure capacities, and impervious surface coverage. To successfully build climate resilience, the region must address the complex intersections of these built, natural, and social systems.

Resource group members

As part of its ongoing and iterative research process, CMAP has formed resource groups in order to engage subject-area experts to help shape the plan's initial exploratory analysis. The purpose of the Climate Resilience resource group is to provide input and insights as CMAP develops a strategy paper on Climate Resilience. Our hope is that this resource group will provide a framework for both members of the group and CMAP staff to inform each other's work.

Resource groups are designed to meet for several months and disband when the strategy paper is completed, at which time the members will be invited to join standing CMAP committees or continue to participate in ongoing activities related to the next comprehensive plan in other ways.

Name Organization
Ashley Nwangwa Red Cross
Emma Ratajczak  Chicago Department of Public Health
Terry Guen Terry Guen Design Associates
Martin Felsen Urban Labs
Chris Schmidt Illinois Department of Transportation
Dave Leopold UI Labs
Henry Pierce  ComEd
John Murray Metropolitan Water Reclamation District
Mike Davidson Chicago Community Trust
Kim Wasserman Little Village Environmental Justice Organization
Elena Grossman Building Resilience Against Climate Effects, UIC Public Health
Tim Weiske Archdiocese of Chicago
Josh Ellis Metropolitan Planning Council
Andrew Szwak Openlands
Rob Moore Natural Resources Defense Council
Mary Mitros DuPage County Stormwater Management
Lyndon Valicenti Foresight Design Initiative
Harriet Festing CNT

This is your plan.

Continual input by stakeholder organizations and individuals was vital to the development and implementation of GO TO 2040. From now through the next plan's adoption in October 2018 and beyond, CMAP will be engaging a broad cross-section of partners from across the region.

Take a moment to fill out the questions below, and for more information on CMAP's public engagement efforts, please visit

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Climate Resilience

Climate Resilience

Climate Resilience