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Chicago’s Cabrini-Green redevelopment taking cues from Cincinnati’s City West

Chicago’s Cabrini-Green redevelopment taking cues from Cincinnati’s City West.

Chicago is moving on from its infamous Cabrini-Green housing projects with a plan to create a mixed-income neighborhood. The plan, however, is facing early criticisms that have also troubled Cincinnati’s similarly built City West development. More from Salon:

“They still be gangbangin’ out here at night,” says Andrea of the neighborhood. Still, it’s nothing like it once was. There’s now a supermarket, a Starbucks, bicyclists riding by, and these immaculate apartment buildings. Andrea says it’s the nicest space she’s ever lived in. A 150,000-square-foot Target is in the works, and an urban farm sprung up nearby in 2007.

But though Andrea likes the new buildings and the neighborhood, she recognizes that this sort of carefully engineered milieu is an environment that doesn’t exactly feel natural, even to the people who live here. “We have meetings where people talk to each other,” she says, referring to activities organized by the management. But aside from that, she says there’s not much interaction between the low- and high-income residents. “You can’t barbecue on the property,” says Andrea. “People aren’t really hanging out together.”

By Randy A. Simes

Randy is an award-winning urban planner who founded UrbanCincy in May 2007. He grew up on Cincinnati’s west side in Covedale, and graduated from the University of Cincinnati’s nationally acclaimed School of Planning in June 2009. In addition to maintaining ownership and serving as the managing editor for UrbanCincy, Randy has worked professionally as a planning consultant throughout the United States, Korea and the Middle East. After brief stints in Atlanta and Chicago, he currently lives in the Daechi neighborhood of Seoul’s Gangnam district.