May Media Tips - Metropolitan Planning Council

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May Media Tips

Become a Fan of MPC on Facebook
MPC’s new Fan page on Facebook is helping expand our reach. In the past month, some 250 “Fans” have signed up to get our latest news, learn about upcoming events, and engage in discussions about our work. If you have a Facebook profile, we invite you to become our Fan and receive regular updates about MPC and the important issues shaping our region, such as public transportation, water supply planning, and workforce housing. Stay tuned for news about our new Web site and blog, coming this summer.  

MPC building support for federal investment reforms
In his keynote address at the recent Richard J. Daley Urban Forum in Chicago, Vice President Joseph Biden told city leaders from around the globe he believes we need a metropolitan investment strategy that rewards innovation. “That’s why President Obama and I have created the White House Office of Urban Affairs,” he explained. “We’ve tasked that office with creating a new urban policy – one that promotes economic competitiveness, equal opportunity, and sustainability.”  MPC applauds the administration’s commitment to a new federal investment strategy that recognizes metropolitan areas drive the U.S. economy. Later this month, MPC and partners will release the first wave of local case studies that demonstrate the value of coordinated investments. And, to build support for a multi-faceted metro-federal agenda, beginning in June, MPC and the Chicago Architecture Foundation will host a lecture series called “Reinventing Public Investment: Better Choices for a Better Chicagoland.” The events will explore how federal investment policies in energy, transportation and water have shaped decisions and development in the Chicago region. The first event, “A Reform Roadmap for Viable Infrastructure in the Chicago Region,” is Friday, June 5, at noon; the second event, “Creating Livable Communities in the Chicago Region,” is Tuesday, July 14, at noon. Reporters may register for these events by contacting MPC Assistant Communications Director Mandy Burrell Booth, at 312-863-6018, or

Farmers markets create pop-up gathering places across Chicago area
Seasonal farmers markets once again are bringing fresh, locally grown fruits and vegetables to neighborhoods and communities across the region – but many of these markets are so much more than a collection of produce stands. They bring neighbors and strangers together to enjoy good food, live music, and educational and family-friendly events, activating public spaces such as parks, parking lots, and streets. Farmers markets are a perfect example of Placemaking, an approach to community planning that starts with neighborhood residents and businesses creating a vision for a public space, and then working together to make that vision a reality. Read how the 61st Street Farmers Market is doing just that, and learn more about Placemaking in Chicago at, or by contacting MPC Associate Karin Sommer, at 312-863-6044 or  

Behind the Numbers: Metro Chicago’s new mayors
The 2009 mayoral elections brought substantial change to the region. Here’s a map showing leadership changes in the region’s 273 municipalities, and a breakdown of the numbers:  

  • 224 of the region’s 273 municipalities held elections this spring.
  • Of those 224 communities, 132 incumbent mayors were re-elected.
  • 37 challengers beat incumbents.
  • 55 races did not feature an incumbent.
  • This means 92 of the region’s 273 municipalities – or 33 percent – changed leadership in April.
  • Dates to Watch
    MPC has moved to 140 S. Dearborn St., Suite 1400, Chicago 60603. Check out our new, green digs, and please update your address book. (Our phone numbers have not changed.)

    Regional Transportation Authority Board meeting, 9:30 a.m.
    28: Illinois State Toll Highway Authority Board meeting, 10 a.m.

    Reporters are still welcome to attend the sold-out MPC roundtable luncheon, “The Creative City: Keeping Chicago Vibrant and Viable,” Wednesday, June 3, from noon to 1:30 p.m., at MPC, 140 S. Dearborn St., Ste. 1400, Chicago. Bob McNulty, president and founder of Partners for Livable Communities, will discuss the concept of “creative cities,” and why amenities, technology and innovation are critical to the health and vitality of metropolitan regions, especially during these difficult economic times. Chicago Ald. Manny Flores (Ward 1), Jamie Simone of the Wicker Park Bucktown Special Service Area, and Chris Gent of the Chicago Park District will respond to McNulty, and explain how they are using Placemaking principles to help Chicago adapt to changing economic times. If you are a member of the media, please register by contacting MPC Assistant Communications Director Mandy Burrell Booth, at 312-863-6018 or  

    10: Chicago Transit Authority Board meeting, 10 a.m.
    12: Metra Board meeting, 9 a.m.

    For complete information about these and other events, visit MPC’s Web Calendar. For more story ideas, and contact information for MPC experts, visit our Newsroom.

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