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The jobs-housing puzzle: Two communities in every neighborhood

Interfaith Housing Development Corporation

In many cases, the people who work in a community are a different group from the people who live there.

This is the fourth of five posts in our "jobs-housing puzzle" series. Every day thousands of people commute to and from each of Chicago’s neighborhoods and suburbs, but only a small minority spends the work day in the same community that it wakes up in. Overwhelmingly people do not live and work in the same place. In this blog series, we’ll cover current statistics on where people are and where they’re going, and what that means for the communities in which they live and work. You can find all the posts in the series here. The people who work in any individual community and the people who live there overlap much less than we might expect. When we think of an area we tend to think of the community as the people who live there. But people who work in that area also make…

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Reflecting on a Year at MPC

Flickr user Stephen Strubel (CC)

As an AmeriCorps*VISTA member at MPC, I helped create competitive, equitable and sustainable communities throughout Chicagoland.

A year ago, feeling a slight lack of inspiration and like I needed a break from an academic setting, I decided to get some real-world experience through national service. I decided upon joining AmeriCorps*VISTA, a program in which members make a year-long, full-time commitment to serve at a nonprofit organization or public agency that is working to help households and communities break out of the cycle of poverty. While searching for placement sites, I stumbled upon the Metropolitan Planning Council's (MPC) website. With my background in public policy and environmental science, it seemed like I had found an organization that was too good to be true. Reading about MPC’s focus on incorporating social, environmental, economic and political considerations to formulate effective…

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Building Partnerships to Build Stronger Communities

Holsten Development

Whistler Crossing is a Regional Housing Initiative Development in Riverdale, Ill.

On Monday, June 16, I was thrilled to join over 150 people in a conversation about regional inequality and how policy advocates and developers might partner to expand housing opportunities in strong markets while investing in jobs, economic development, and retail expansion in challenged, high-poverty communities. As a housing policy advocate and practitioner, the Chicago Regional Convening excited me more than the many conferences, roundtables and forums that I find myself attending because the conversation was intentionally nuanced and two-fold: How can we expand the benefits of quality neighborhoods to those that cannot afford such communities now, while building up high-poverty, segregated communities with jobs, retail and higher quality housing? Too often the fair housing community,…

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Kicking off a career with the Wayfinding Fellowship

Flickr user Bruce Berrien (CC)

The Wayfinding Fellowship invites a past research assistant to continue navigating their way to a career.

Nothing cures jetlag like a job offer. This March I was on spring break in Tokyo, a trip that was meant to be a last hoorah before graduating with a master’s degree and starting the job hunt. At about 3 a.m. local time—jet lag gets the best of us—I was awake and ready for the day, waiting for the rest of the city to wake up. To kill some time, I checked my e-mail. I wasn’t expecting anything important—everyone knew I was on hiatus—so I was pleasantly surprised to receive an e-mail from Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) Project Manager Breann Gala telling me about MPC’s new Wayfinding Fellowship. Breann was my supervisor last summer throughout my time as a research assistant at MPC. Together we worked on a number of projects such as the launch…

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In the Loop: July 10, 2014

National Park Service.

Lyndon and Lady Bird Johnson on a train.

In the Loop is your round-up of what’s going on in the transportation world, posted in conjunction with Talking Transit. @metroplanners news The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) is hosting Governor Pat Quinn and businessman Bruce Rauner for MPC’s Annual Luncheon on August 28 at noon. At the event, the candidates will discuss their priorities on issues from housing to transportation to water resources. Neither candidate has yet published a transportation platform on their websites, so their insight in person will add significantly to our understanding of their goals for the State of Illinois. Chris Hale, an MPC research assistant, conducted an in-depth study of jobs and commuting patterns in the city of Chicago. His work, detailed in a five-part blog series, begins with…

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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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Helping create competitive, equitable, and sustainable communities

For 80 years, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has made the Chicago region a better place to live and work by partnering with businesses, communities and governments to address the area’s toughest planning and development challenges. MPC works to solve today's urgent problems while consistently thinking ahead to prepare the region for the needs of tomorrow. Read more about our work »

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