In cooperation with developer Fifield Companies, Sarver and his firm have fleshed out a masterplan that calls for 10 million square feet of new office space in the West Loop in 10 years. The plan also calls for a 10-to-15-acre park covering the trench of the Kennedy Expressway, which forms a barrier between the West Loop and downtown. Alan Schachtman, executive vice president of Fifield, called this hypothetical green a Millennium Park for the West Loop.
The event will start at 4pm with Fisher explaining what CEOs for Cities does and what they stand for. Organizers also say that those who attend will also hear about civic activists can work with professional architects, planners, designers and artists in a collaborative way to change their communities.
While serving as Lieutenant Governor, Fisher was perhaps most well-known for his economic development work and the implementation of the Ohio Hubs of Innovation & Opportunity to foster urban-based collaborations between businesses, colleges and universities, and research institutions.
Fisher’s interest in these collaborative approaches to building up cities aligned him perfectly with CEOs for Cities which helps lead these types of discussions and has becoming a prominent voice on these topics over recent years. Specifically though, leadership at CEOs for Cities believe that great cities are not simply places that are born, but are rather made and improved over time.
“A living place is someone’s success,” Paul Grogan, who founded CEOs for Cities in 2001 with Richard M. Daley. “These are matters of choice and skill, not laws of physics.”
This work of enhancing cities has spread throughout North America to more than 60 cities, and CEOs for Cities currently has offices in Chicago, Cleveland and Washington D.C.
Following the speech, organizers say that the audience will get an opportunity to meet and discuss their ideas with Fisher during a reception to be held at 5:10pm.
Everyone knows that America’s roadways and bridges are crumbling, but the United States has also seemingly given up on its subway systems. Atlanta’s subway system was the last subway system started in the U.S., and its construction commenced in 1979. Since that time no other American city has been able to figure out the financing of a subway system with the disappearance of federal funding support. More from Governing:
The rapid pace of subway construction, especially in developing countries, has driven the number of systems in the world to more than 190, according to the Economist. One reason for the boom has to do with government stimulus programs that followed the financial crisis, allowing investment in subway construction to soar. One country that’s noticeably absent from the project lists that appear in trade publications is the U.S.
With transit funding still uncertain, given the lack of a stable, dependable funding stream from Congress, all but a handful of cities have decided to stay clear of such money-draining projects…Some might argue that we don’t need such large-scale transit systems, which are not only expensive to build but expensive to run. Indeed, debates over the pros and cons of a subway system have killed many plans while delaying some construction projects for decades, not just in the U.S. but in other countries as well. Still, we can’t ignore the fact that the U.S. is becoming an increasingly urbanized country, with more people working and living in cities every year.
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has put together a list of the cities participating in the Earth Hour City Challenge. Within that list, WWF lists Chicago, Cincinnati and San Francisco as the three finalists in World Wildlife Fund’s Earth Hour City Challenge for 2013. More from World Wildlife Fund:
The cities were chosen by WWF and global management consultancy Accenture in recognition of the steps their community has taken to prepare for increasingly extreme weather and transition towards a 100% renewable energy future. The finalists were selected among 29 of the most forward-thinking cities in the country which have all committed to minimize their carbon footprint and ready their communities for the dangerous local consequences of climate change.
Cincinnati is developing a power aggregation agreement that would make it the largest city in the U.S. to supply its energy entirely from renewable sources and committing to reducing carbon emissions two percent annually for 42 years. The city is also working with residents, businesses and community leaders throughout the city to adopt climate-smart policies; expanding current tree planting efforts, promoting metro ridership, educating students about sustainability and conducting energy audits for local non-profits.
Single men and women are often in a quest to find other single men and women. The quest leads people to debate which cities are best for singles, but what is the truth behind the rhetoric, and how do you think Cincinnati stacks up? More from Atlantic Cities:
To figure out where the gender ratio is most skewed in each direction, we went right to the data and looked at the ratio of men living alone to women living alone in order to assess the dating scene. We also subtracted estimates of the gay and lesbian population in order to focus on men and women interested in dating someone of the opposite sex. Finally, we excluded people older than 65 since differences in life expectancy skew the gender ratio in the later years.
In most metros, the neighborhood with the highest ratio of men to women is in or near downtown, as well as in recently redeveloped neighborhoods like Boston’s Waterfront or Long Island City. The neighborhoods with the highest ratio of women to men tend to be more residential, like San Francisco’s Marina and Seattle’s Queen Anne, and more upscale (and safe), like the Upper East Side and Upper Connecticut Avenue. Some are near major retail centers, like Chicago’s Near North Side, the Beverly Center in LA, and Atlanta’s Perimeter Mall.
The Federal Government has failed to reform how it invests in its infrastructure, local governments are working hard to figure it out on their own. In Chicago this has led to the formation of what Mayor Rahm Emanuel (D) is calling the Chicago Infrastructure Trust. Emanuel hopes that the public-private partnership will eventually drive billions of dollars of new investment in the aging cities infrastructure. More from Next City:
Beyond financing public bridges and water systems, the trust must build another sort of infrastructure: That which supports public-private partnerships. In turning to collaborate with the private sector, Chicago has emulated policies more popular around the world than elsewhere in the U.S. Canada, Australia and many countries throughout Europe, including the United Kingdom, all have public-private partnerships that help to finance major capital projects.
But in the U.S., the concept is still in its infancy stage. Why the idea has yet to gain traction here has much to do with the reliance of local governments on direct assistance from Washington and tax-free public bonds. The need to be transformative is especially important in Chicago, which in recent years has ceded control of public assets such as its parking meters and tollways, only to face allegations that the sales benefitted companies — and former Mayor Richard Daley, who negotiated the deals — more than they benefited the public.
New York City and Chicago are blazing a progressive path towards a sustainable transport network. Cincinnati has made minor strides with regards to bicycle infrastructure and Complete Streets, but much is being left on the table in the Queen City and elsewhere. More from Grid Chicago:
I hadn’t been to New York since 2008 when I checked out their Summer Streets ciclovia. Since then Manhattan has gone through an amazing transformation under Mayor Michael Bloomberg and transportation commissioner Janette Sadik Khan. Besides implementing the bike lanes, they pulled off the ultimate road diet on Broadway, removing car lanes and shutting down sections of the island’s main diagonal thoroughfare to calm traffic and make space for some amazing new car-free spaces. And I didn’t even have time to check other first-rate bike facilities in Queens and Brooklyn, or the new segments of the Highline, the sleek, 1.5-mile elevated linear park which paved the way for Chicago’s Bloomingdale.