Stop by the Chicago Architecture Foundation at 224 South Michigan Ave and get inspired byChicago Architects Reimagine Neighborhoods. This exhibition puts the city’s leading architects on display as they creatively redesign neighborhoods to modernize the city, bring communities together, and develop industry. Also on display here is the Chicago Model City, pictured below.
Check out these six examples of how Chicago could be, symbolically displayed around the model of Chicago as it now stands:
John Ronan proposes a plan to modernize the public transportation system. Ronan suggests a suspended monorail, which would be faster and quieter than today’s L. The top of the monorail structure would provide space for walkers, runners, and bikers. The ground level below the monorail would feature a public plaza with street performers and other entertainment.
#2 Roscoe Village
Doug Garofalo and Xavier Vendrell observe that this neighborhood has wide streets but little traffic flow and suggest that the sidewalks be expanded for pedestrians. Smaller streets could be completely cleared from cars, which would be moved to the alleys. Garages could then be converted into businesses or demolished and turned into gardens and green spaces.
#3 The New Neighborly
Today the Near West Side is a dead zone, undeveloped due to a giant parking lot that spoils the neighborhood. Sarah Dunn and Martin Felsen want to replace the asphalt with a material that people enjoy standing on. The space could then be used for other purposes and converted into a dense parking area when needed.
#4 Pilsen Textile Incubator
Patricia Saldana Natke wants to use the empty warehouses of this neighborhood to transform it into a center for garment manufacturing and fashion. The plan leverages the skills for textile and fine art that the residents of this community already have to bring new economic life to the area.
#5 Midway Loop
Ross Wimer envisions Midway as a destination for neighborhood residents and visitors, who could eat dinner at the airport as they watch the planes take off. To accomplish this, Wimer wants to make the airport more accessible by connecting it to the L. He also suggests tearing down the wall that stands as a sound and visual barrier and replacing it with a modern building designed to capture sound.
#6 The Peace Train
Jeanne Gang proposes building a youth center at the Addison station. This structure would bring together children and teens from diverse neighborhoods and encourage them to build friendships, participate in activities, and engage in public service. The shape of this center would evoke Wrigley field, which is not inwardly focused like many stadiums but rather spills its energy out into the city.