Metropolitan Planning Council
Hundreds of Logan Square residents came out to participate in an exciting round of discussions about the community's future.
Tuesday night, the Hairpin Arts Center was buzzing with activity as Logan Square residents expressed their views on the future of their community.
Residents were there to take part in the first of the Metropolitan Planning Council’s (MPC) Logan Square Corridor Development Initiative meetings, a participatory process designed to allow communities to proactively plan for real-world development scenarios. The initiative focuses on a series of specific sites over the course of three public workshops and asks residents to envision a future for their neighborhood.
In Logan Square, participants are being asked to consider the future of the City-owned parcels above the Logan Square Blue Line station, including the station plaza, the Emmett Street parking lot and the bus turnaround. These sites are at the center of the neighborhood and have great access to the Blue Line, which is currently undergoing significant renovation. MPC’s equitable transit-oriented development initiative focuses on encouraging more housing and jobs to be located near transit, which is why the Logan Square site was prioritized for this Corridor Development Initiative.
The 160 residents who attended this week’s workshop shared their vision for the neighborhood and identified current opportunities and challenges facing the community. Review the night’s presentation and agenda, as well as background materials for discussion (see the Spanish presentation and agenda).
Thirty-fifth Ward Alderman Rey Colón noted that he is excited to hear about the community’s goals for the site and that he is working with the City of Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development, Department of Transportation and Transit Authority to ensure that the results from the process are incorporated in the site’s future use.
When we asked participants, “What opportunities do you see to improve Logan Square for all residents?” here were a few of the most common responses we heard:
- Implement strategies to maintain Logan Square’s ethnic and income diversity and ensure enough affordable housing in the community;
- Focus on improving pedestrian and bike safety, walkability and accessibility within the community and along the Milwaukee Avenue corridor;
- Build on the boulevard system to create additional open, green space; and
- Create and retain small businesses and nonprofit organizations.
Currently, MPC is working to transcribe and evaluate the great feedback we heard from participants and will share a more detailed summary of public responses at the second meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 16, where they will be used to help formulate ideas for the sites, and in the coming weeks via the website.
Join us Tuesday, Sept. 16, at 6 p.m., at the Hairpin Arts Center for the next stage of the Corridor Development Initiative, the block exercise, where residents will sketch out and build hypothetical concepts for the sites.