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CMAP News and Related Materials

CMAP photo contest. CMAP is asking residents of Cook, DuPage, Will, Kane, McHenry, Lake, and Kendall counties to use their cameras to capture what they value about the region. Submissions to the Images of Northeastern Illinois photo contest could be showcased in CMAP’s plans and website.  The contest will have five themes, with two winners for each theme and one overall winner.  The themes are Diversity (people, places, culture), Community Vitality (transportation, livable communities, retail, neighborhood pride), Natural Environment (lakes, rivers, preserves, parks, sky, wildlife), Global Appeal (business centers, commerce, production, movement of goods, finance), and Architecture/Urban Design (plazas, buildings, neighborhoods, boulevards).  Photos should be submitted by November 15, 2007.  For details, click the link above or contact Amy Talbot at 312-386-8646).

GreenTown conference.  "GreenTown: The Future of Community" is scheduled for Wednesday, September 19, 2007.  This one-day conference is designed to help decision makers work together toward an eco-effective community. Attendees will include mayors and other elected officials, public works directors, park district directors, planners, developers, architects, builders, and others "interested in seeing how a community can become greener." The location is Frank Lloyd Wright’s Unity Temple, 875 Lake Street in Oak Park.
(August 7, 2007)

IDOT Fall Planning Conference.  The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) Fall Planning Conference will be held September 13-14, 2007 at the Clock Tower Resort in Rockford. The invited keynote speaker is Rodney Slater, former U.S. Secretary of Transportation. Conference topics include future strategies of MPOs, best practices in planning, linking land use and transportation, and updates on the Illinois Tomorrow and Safe Routes to Schools programs. See the  for more information. The contact is Betsy Tracy, 217-785-2368.

Poplar Creek Watershed Plan.  Through a partnership with the Poplar Creek Watershed Coalition, CMAP has published a plan for the watershed, which is situated primarily in northwestern Cook County, Illinois, with a small portion in northeastern Kane County. Poplar Creek has two designated uses -- aquatic life and primary contact recreation -- and the IEPA considers both to be in nonsupport, meaning Poplar Creek is "impaired" due to various pollutants.  See also the CMAP report Guidance for Developing Watershed Action Plans in Illinois (4MB PDF), which is useful to anyone interested in starting or participating in a locally-led watershed planning initiative.
(July 20, 2007)

FPA review process.  Effective July 1, 2007, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) assumed NIPC's former responsibility for the Facilities Planning Area (FPA) process, which includes reviewing requested changes to the State of Illinois Water Quality Management Plan required under the federal Clean Water Act.
(July 1, 2007)

Regional Map of Metropolitan Chicago.  CMAP has published the region's first base map in over 20 years. The agency developed this map as a resource for planners and local officials. If you work for a municipality, please contact your local council of government, which is helping to hand out the maps to their members. If demand is sufficient, CMAP may print additional copies that would be available to other groups for a fee. To express interest, send us an email.
(June 20, 2007)

Watershed Planning Guide.  The CMAP report Guidance for Developing Watershed Action Plans in Illinois (4MB PDF) is useful to anyone interested in starting a locally-led watershed planning initiative or in strengthening an existing plan.  This summer, CMAP is offering two workshops about the guide for planning novices and experienced practitioners alike.  The first was held Thursday, June 28, in the CMAP offices at Sears Tower.  And the second was on Thursday, July 12, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at University of Illinois Extension, 2501 N. 8th Street, (Illinois State Fairgrounds), Springfield.  Click here for more information.
(June 15, 2007)

"Leave No Child Inside."  Chicago Wilderness has begun "Leave No Child Inside," a multi-year initiative to get kids out of the house and away from computers or TV. CW hosted a kick-off celebration at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 16, 2007 in Jackson Park. The program's goal is to promote children's health and foster new generations who care enough for nature to protect it. The event will have fun children's activities, including close-up animal encounters, a nature scavenger hunt and more. 
(June 1, 2007)

Letter to the Governor.  Gerald Bennett, chairman of the CMAP Board, and the chairmen of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will counties jointly signed a letter to Governor Blagojevich calling for a new program of capital investment in Illinois roads, transit, and other badly needed infrastructure.  In addition to Mayor Bennett, the letter's signers are John Church, Kendall County Board chairman;  Kenneth D. Koehler, McHenry County Board chairman;  Karen McConnaughay, Kane County Board chairman;  Robert J. Schillerstrom, County Board chairman;  Suzi Schmidt, Lake County Board chair;  Todd Stroger, Cook County Board president;  and Lawrence M. Walsh, Will County chief executive. The CMAP Board earlier articulated its position on the necessity of a new capital program for the State of Illinois.  Click here to see a statement by the Transportation for Illinois Coalition regarding the letter to Governor Blagojevich.
(May 2, 2007)

Press Release.  In testimony on April 18 at the National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission hearing in Chicago, CMAP Executive director Randy Blankenhorn called for the U.S. government to give regional planning agencies the authority and resources to address the needs of major metropolitan areas.  He pointed out the threat to the nation's economy posed by over-burdened roads and transit in the 12 largest metropolitan regions, which make up one-third of the U.S. gross domestic product.  Read more in Randy's written testimony.
(April 18, 2007)

Press Release.  New data from the U.S. Census Bureau show that the population of the metropolitan Chicago region grew 4.5 percent between 2000 and 2006. The region added an estimated 407,133 residents over that period, putting the total population at 9,505,748 people as of 2006. Northeastern Illinois must carefully address the increased population and its implications for transportation, land use, the environment, housing, and the economy.
(April 4, 2007)

Press Release.  Montgomery mayor Marilyn Michelini will represent northeastern Illinois on the board of the National Association of Regional Councils, a non-profit organization based in Washington, DC. NARC is a leading advocate for regional organizations and solutions that positively impact American communities -- large and small, urban and rural. Mayor Michelini has been appointed as an at-large representative on the board of the National Association of Regional Councils (NARC).
(March 28, 2007)

Press Release.  Members have been named for the Regional Water Supply Planning Group (RWSPG), which CMAP has organized a new planning group to study water supplies in an 11-county region of northeastern Illinois, where potential water shortages are projected in coming years.
(March 23, 2007)

Press Release.  CMAP Board chairman Gerald Bennett was a featured speaker at a news conference hosted by the Transportation for Illinois Coalition (TFIC) on Tuesday, March 20, 2007, at the Thompson Center in Chicago.  The event called attention to the region's desperate need for funding of roads and transit infrastructure.  CMAP strongly supports a new program of capital investment for the State of Illinois. Other speakers included Batavia mayor Jeff Schielke (chair of the Council of Mayors), DuPage County board chairman Robert Schillerstrom, and Lake County board chairman Suzi Schmidt.
(March 20, 2007)

Press Release.  At CMAP's summit on February 6 at the University of Illinois at Chicago, a capacity crowd of more than 250 attendees participated in a lively give-and-take with national and local experts on the relationships of jobs, housing, and transportation planning.  During his summit keynote address titled "Integrated Planning for a Global City," Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago president Michael Moskow said, "If Chicago is to continue to stand out as one of the nation’s leading cities and continue to expand its global role, it must function efficiently in its internal circulation of ideas, goods and -- the hallmark of great cities -- people."

The summit also saw CMAP officially debut its Regional Snapshot, which summarizes some of the primary challenges facing northeastern Illinois. CMAP executive director Randy Blankenhorn gave a presentation summarizing the report, which includes data and analysis that describe where the region stands regarding population, the economy, land use, natural resources, transportation and housing.
(February 6, 2007)

Illinois Issues guest column.  CMAP contributed a guest column to the February 2007 edition of Illinois Issues magazine.  In it, executive director Randy Blankenhorn asserts, "Good planning without implementation is better than no planning at all — but not much." 
(February 5, 2007)

Press Release.  CMAP has launched Travel Tracker, a year-long survey of the region's residents to learn about travel habits and transportation needs. Because the last large-scale travel survey was conducted in the early 1990s, Travel Tracker results are eagerly anticipated by many of the region’s planning and transportation agencies, as well as university researchers seeking solutions to pressing transportation problems. See http://www.chicagoareaplanning.org/travelsurvey/ for more information.
(January 18, 2007)

Press Release.  With a new MacArthur Foundation grant of $600,000, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) will expand its Full Circle community mapping and planning efforts. The project develops wireless web tools to help communities identify how land parcels are being used, and how they could be used more effectively through a coordinated local planning strategy.
(December 13, 2006)

Press Release.  CMAP hosted an open forum on November 17, 2006, in Oak Brook to launch a three-year regional initiative to study water supply in Boone, Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties. That event represented a critical first step toward creating a new Regional Water Supply Planning Group (RWSPG), which will be charged with making recommendations on water resource policies and plans.
(November 16, 2006)

TestimonyThe House Mass Transit Committee held a subject-matter hearing on Thursday, November 16 at the State Capitol in Springfield.  Topics included the Regional Transportation Authority and an update on CMAP by executive director Randy Blankenhorn. 
(November 16, 2006)

NewsletterCMAP published its first newsletter, which was mailed to several thousand stakeholders and agency partners across the region.  It features stories on the CMAP Board's strategic report, the regional water-supply planning initiative, and the broad impacts of rising housing costs.
(November 2, 2006)

Speech. Randy Blankenhorn spoke as part of the American Planning Association's monthly lecture series.   The talk is an overview of CMAP and the merger of CATS and NIPC.
(November 7, 2006)

Press Release.  The percent of income spent on housing by residents of metropolitan Chicago continues to rise, according to the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey.  CMAP staff note that the region's renters tend to spend a higher percentage of income on housing than homeowners do. 
(October 2, 2006)

Speech.  CMAP executive director Randy Blankenhorn gave the keynote address at the Transportation for Illinois Coalition's annual meeting. (See his prepared remarks in our Talks and Testimony section.) He called for a new approach to convince the public and decision makers of the urgent need for a capital program in Illinois.
(September 20, 2006)

Press Release.  The CMAP Board's strategic report on vision, governance, and funding has been submitted to Governor Blagojevich and the General Assembly.  Click here to download the full report (500KB PDF) or the executive summary (100KB PDF). 
(September 1, 2006)

Media Advisory.  CMAP hosted an economic and community development summit, “Working Together in the 21st Century,” on Thursday, August 17, 2006, at the University of Illinois at Chicago. See www.chicagoareaplanning.org/summit/ for the agenda and a summary report. 
(August 17, 2006)

Press Release.  Thirty-four residents of the seven-county region have been appointed as members of the Citizens' Advisory Committee of CMAP. 
(July 11, 2006)

Press ReleaseThe Regional Planning Board is hosting seven public meetings throughout northeastern Illinois to gather comment on the 2030 Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) Update. 
(May 8, 2006)

Press Release.  The RPB has named Randy Blankenhorn as executive director to lead its efforts in comprehensive planning for land use and transportation in northeastern Illinois.  See a PDF of coverage in the Tribune and Crain's. 
(April 12, 2006)

Press Release.  Regional Planning Board is recruiting individual members for its Citizens' Advisory Committee. 
(March 17, 2006)

Press Release.  Regional Planning Board elects officers to form executive committee. 
(November 7, 2005)

Press Release.  Gov. Blagojevich signs law to strengthen, streamline transportation and land use planning in Northeastern Illinois.
(August 9, 2005)

Other CMAP News

House Committee on Mass Transit.  The House Mass Transit Committee held a subject-matter hearing on Thursday, November 16, 2006, at the State Capitol in Springfield.  Topics included the Regional Transportation Authority and an update on CMAP by executive director Randy Blankenhorn.  See his remarks his remarks and those of RTA executive director Steve Schlickman (links will open PDF files).
(Posted November 17, 2006)

"Tuesdays at APA" talk covers CMAP.  CMAP executive director Randy Blankenhorn spoke on November 7 at the American Planning Association's monthly lecture series.  Click here to download the text of his remarks, which give an overview of CMAP and the merger of CATS and NIPC.
(posted November 8, 2006)

Sam Santell, 1954-2006.  Everyone associated with the RPB was deeply saddened by the sudden death on April 19, 2006, of NIPC planning director Sam Santell, who was instrumental in completion of the 2040 Regional Framework Plan.  Sam was honored posthumously on April 25 when his NIPC colleagues received the American Planning Association's national plan of the year award in San Antonio, Texas.
(posted April 21 and revised April 26, 2006)

RPB Retreat and Board Meeting.  On December 14, 2005, the RPB concluded its member retreat at NIPC's new offices in Sears Tower.  The resulting Action Plan (115 KB, PDF file) describes the board's strategy moving into its first full year of operation.
(posted December 21, 2005)



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