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July 2012 Blog posts

Frank Clark, 2012 Jean Allard Regional Trailblazer Award Winner

At MPC's 2012 Annual Luncheon, "The Cities That Work," MPC honored Frank Clark, former chairman and CEO of ComEd, with the Jean Allard Regional Trailblazer Award. Named for MPC’s immediate past president, Jean Allard, who served the organization from 1990 to 1995, MPC established the award to recognize others who blazed trails similar to Allard. Since then, the award has been given to individuals who exemplify her independence, leadership and commitment to regional collaboration. Allard was one of the first civic leaders in Chicago to realize that being truly metropolitan meant reaching out to all parts of the region. Sadly, Allard passed away in January of this year. "Jean Allard was a trailblazer in every sense of the word, and someone I personally knew. Her metropolitan…

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The Cities That Work Series: The media response to the Annual Luncheon

This year's Annual Luncheon was extremely well attended, with 950 guests filling the Hyatt Regency Chicago's Regency Ballroom—including representatives from 19 different media outlets—to hear the mayors of Milwaukee, Gary and Chicago discuss mega-regional priorities. Many of the reporters covered the event, helping to perpetuate the conversation about the value of mega-regional planning. For your reading pleasure: The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel featured two articles about the Annual Luncheon. Milwaukee touts its water resources at Chicago conference references Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett's discussion of the "Fresh Coast" and Milwaukee's future-focused water technology sector. A second article, Chicago mayor a no-show at regional cooperation conference, noted Chicago Mayor…

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The Cities That Work Series: The tipping point of a mega-region

With globalization having long been a prevalent consideration in economics, the terms “megacity” and “megaregion” have become fairly popular terms in the American vernacular. Megaregions are commonly known as sets of fused Howard Snyder Photo courtesy NWSCDC geographies which share economic systems, natural resources and ecosystems, and transportation systems. Yet having shared characteristics and blurred boundaries should not be the sole reasons why megacities (“communities”) should operate as one unit under the umbrella of a megaregion. Communities must know their purpose relative to the megaregion. And when issues of poverty are notable in communities throughout a megaregion, what is the economic purpose of a megacity? On July 17, leaders…

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The Cities that Work Series: Regional collaboration, local action needed in tri-state planning

Larry Darling

Public officials, policymakers, and academics love to meet, confer, and discuss–but will action follow? As a member of the latter group, I was a contributor to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) recent territorial review of the Chicago Tri-State region (discussed in an earlier post) and panelist at this week’s conference on “Milwaukee’s Future in the Chicago Megacity” sponsored by Marquette University Law School’s Lubar Fund for Public Policy Research and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Most participants at Marquette’s conference agreed, at least conceptually, that Milwaukee’s best interests–and Chicago’s–would be served by greater coordination and collaboration, especially in the…

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The Cities That Work Series: Water Trails connecting Gary, Chicago, Milwaukee on the Lake

On Wednesday, July 25, MPC is hosting our 2012 Annual Luncheon: The Cities That Work, featuring an insightful and provocative dialogue between the mayors of Chicago, Gary and Milwaukee. Follow our blog over the next few weeks as we feature posts from guest authors and members of our staff on issues that unite the tri-state region. For more details or to purchase tables or individual tickets for the July 25 event, visit MPC's web calendar. The most obvious common thread between Chicago, Milwaukee, and Gary is, of course, the lake. Lake Michigan is the original reason these cities exist, and for many of these cities’ residents and businesses, proximity to such an attractive natural resource is the appeal of locating here. While these cities already make use of their scenic lake…

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