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June 2012 Blog posts

In the Loop: June 29, 2012

In the Loop is your Friday round-up of what's going on in the transportation world, posted in conjunction with Talking Transit. @ mpc Chicago awarded $30 million in TIGER funding for CREATE and CTA projects. MPC bikes to work and staff give suburbanites tips on how they can too! Bus Rapid Transit is better transit. RTA recently released results of a study of their transit passengers that said riders were overwhelmingly satisfied with the current, separate fare structure of regional transit organizations. An informal MPC poll on Facebook found otherwise. elsewhere CTA gets $2 million up front cash from Groupon for 3-day fare pass deal and Grid Chicago sits down with CTA President Forrest Claypool on BRT, Lake Shore Drive, Bikes and the Red Line. Rio expects 220,000 riders a day on…

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Helping communities keep stormwater where it belongs

Derek Montgomery/Minnesota Public Radio

As evident on a street in Duluth, aging infrastructure can't withstand extreme storms, but without repairs, even day-to-day issues like infiltration and inflow cause serious problems for communities.

This is my first post as the associate for the water resources program here at MPC and when I first sat down to write it, I thought I would kick it all off by explaining a little bit about my background. But then, wouldn’t you know it, last week, my hometown, Duluth, Minn., was plastered all over the news and blowing up Facebook and Flickr with images of the biggest flood to hit Northern Minnesota in nearly a century-and-a-half. Between seven and ten inches of rain fell in 24 hours—an event considered a 500-year flood with only a .20 percent chance of happening any given year—so I decided to write about that instead. A polar bear and two seals, including Feisty pictured here, temporarily escaped Duluth's Lake Superior Zoo during the flood. Ellie Burcar I grew up…

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Chicago awarded $30.4 million in federal TIGER grants

Chicago was awarded two of the highly competitive federal Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grants. The Chicago Transit Authority received $20 million to fund the 95th Street station on the Red Line. The TIGER award will be combined with an $80 million TIFIA loan, bond sales, and other state and federal funds as part of an overall $240 million funding package. With 20,000 riders passing through it every day, the 95th Street station is one of the CTA’s busiest. It also is a critical connection for far south side communities to job centers throughout the region. The intermodal project will reduce pedestrian and bus congestion, cut travel times, improve accessibility, and be a catalyst for new economic development on Chicago’s south side. Also…

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'Space in Between' contest seeks creative transitional uses of vacant spaces through Aug. 31

Today marks the official start of MPC’s fourth annual Placemaking contest. This year’s is “Space in Between,” which is seeking the most creative and interactive temporary uses of vacant space in metropolitan Chicago, Northwest Indiana, and southeastern Wisconsin. Why temporary? In recent years, more and more vacant spaces have popped up in communities across the region. Particularly in neighborhoods that bore the brunt of the recession, achieving the ideal use of these spaces may take a while. The "Space in Between" contest re-focuses our energy, creativity and funds on the great potential for meaningful places to exist between a vacant space’s current state and its ideal, finished state. This contest is about the "here and now," not the "maybe…

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Land Banking Case Studies: Twin Cities Community Land Bank

Cities and counties across the country and in our region are exploring land banks as a promising strategy for addressing vacant properties. This five-part series on land banking on MPC’s blog, The Connector, is intended to inform policymakers and practitioners in northeastern Illinois and other regions—most notably in Cook County—as they explore options for addressing the vacant and abandoned buildings crisis. Each time a new post is added, we will update this homepage, www.metroplanning.org/landbanks. Please bookmark this page as a resource. Twin Cities Community Land Bank The Twin Cities Community Land Bank LLC (TCC Land Bank) is a nonprofit Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) created in 2009 by the Family Housing Fund, a nonprofit established in…

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The Connector is MPC's blog, written primarily by MPC staff members, with occasional guest posts from volunteers and partners. 

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