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Old May 31st, 2007, 11:40 PM   #121
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Simple really - pretend to be a fifth grader.
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Old June 1st, 2007, 05:17 AM   #122
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I remember when we put Chicago 2016 in the windows at the Aon Center, it was a bit of a production. Management had to tell hundreds of people how to position their blinds and whether to turn off their office lights. It was pretty tedious.
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Old June 8th, 2007, 08:50 AM   #123
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Good news for music fans, looks like the venue formerly known as the World Music Theater will be on its way out in the next few years. Good riddance since the venue location, sound, and site lines in the place are awful.

http://leisureblogs.chicagotribune.c..._park_amp.html


The nation’s largest concert promoter, Live Nation, is looking to sell off several under-performing amphitheaters, including the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre in Tinley Park, a spokesman confirmed Thursday.

There is no timetable for selling the Tinley Park venue, but Vlautin said Live Nation will not sell the land to any buyer who would use it as a concert site. The property is zoned for industrial use.


I always thought it would be cool if the city had a big (10-20k) outdoor amphitheater. When/if Charter One at Northerly Island is decommissioned I wonder if that could happen. Granted finding open space, willing neighborhood and dealing with parking that those venues like to cater to makes a city location problematic.

Milwaukee does it well with their Marcus Amphitheater though it needs a bigger lawn area.
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Last edited by nomarandlee; June 8th, 2007 at 09:29 AM.
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Old June 8th, 2007, 09:11 AM   #124
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formerly known as the World Muslim Theater
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Old June 8th, 2007, 09:31 AM   #125
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doh!!! Good spot spyguy. Sometimes i unknowingly write the wackiest random things.
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Old June 8th, 2007, 10:45 PM   #126
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Hotel planned for North Franklin Street site

June 06, 2007
Hotel planned for North Franklin Street site
By Alby Gallun

A group led by hotel investor Peter Dumon plans to build a 295-room limited-service hotel on North Franklin Street in the Loop.

The developers are likely to run the hotel as a Marriott Courtyard Inn or a Hyatt Place, Global Hyatt Corp.’s new limited-service brand, says Mr. Dumon, president of Oakbrook Terrace-based Harp Group Inc. The group recently paid $5.7 million, or about $700 a square foot, for the 8,100-square-foot development site at 28 N. Franklin St., currently a parking lot.

“We’ll be full during the week with business travelers, and on weekends we can be a discount alternative to Michigan Avenue,” Mr. Dumon says.
Yet the scarcity of restaurants, shopping and other attractions nearby means “weekends could be tough” for the hotel, says Brian Flanagan, president of Chicago-based Property Valuation Advisors Inc.

As usual, Mr. Dumon is teaming up on the project with developers David Bossy and Michael Firsel, his partners in Crescendo Cos., a holding company the trio formed several months ago.

Downtown hotel development has picked up as hotel occupancies and room rates have surged the past couple years. Other recent limited-service hotel projects include a Hampton Inn at 22 W. Monroe St. and La Quinta Inn at 1 S. Franklin St.

Mr. Dumon’s project would rise about 24 stories and cost about $70 million. He expects that city officials will approve zoning changes for the project if the developers make a donation to the city’s affordable housing trust fund.
The development group bought the property from a land trust controlled by real estate investor George Hanus.
(Thomas A. Corfman contributed to this story.)
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Old June 10th, 2007, 05:25 AM   #127
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I do not know where to put this so this general Chicago post should do.


New model police

Jun 7th 2007 | LOS ANGELES AND NEW YORK
From The Economist print edition

Why crime continues to fall in America's biggest cities even as it rises elsewhere

WILLIAM BRATTON, the chief of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), likes to say that “cops count”. They certainly seem to count when Mr Bratton is in charge of them. New York's crime rate withered when he ran its police force in the mid-1990s, and Los Angeles has become more law-abiding ever since he arrived in 2002. Burglaries are down by a fifth, murders by a third and serious assaults by more than half. The setting for innumerable hard-boiled detective novels and violent television dramas is now safer than Salt Lake City in Utah.

Yet Los Angeles's good fortune is not replicated everywhere. Compared to ten years ago, when crime was in remission across America, the current diagnosis is complex and worrying. Figures released this week by the FBI show that, while property crimes continue to fall, the number of violent crimes has begun to drift upwards. In some places it has soared. Oakland, in northern California, had 145 murders last year—more than half again as many as in 2005. No fewer than 406 people died in Philadelphia, putting the murder rate back where it had been in the bad old days of the early 1990s.

The most consistent and striking trend of the past few years is a benign one. America's three biggest cities are becoming safer. Robberies in Chicago, Los Angeles and New York have tumbled in the past few years, defying the national trend (see chart). Indeed, the big cities are now holding down increases in overall crime rates. Between 2000 and 2006, for example, the number of murders in America went up by 7%. Were it not for Chicago, Los Angeles and New York, all of which notched many fewer, the increase would have been 11%.

This is especially surprising given the big cities' recent woes. Thanks to a cut in starting salaries and poaching by suburban forces, New York's police department has lost more than 4,000 officers since 2000. Chicago and Los Angeles also have fewer cops than they did in the late 1990s—and the latter has more people. The LAPD labours under a court decree, imposed in 2001 following revelations of corruption and brutality, which forces it to spend precious time and money scrutinising itself.

The three police forces, though, look increasingly alike when it comes to methods of tackling crime. The new model was pioneered in New York. In the mid-1990s it began to map crimes, allocate officers accordingly (a strategy known as “putting cops on the dots”) and hold local commanders accountable for crime on their turf. Since 2002 it has flooded high-crime areas with newly qualified officers. The cops' methods are sometimes crude—police stops in New York have increased five-fold in the past five years—but highly effective. Crime tends to go down by about a third in the flooded areas, which has a disproportionate impact on the overall tally.






In the past few years Chicago and Los Angeles have adopted similar methods: although, having fewer officers, they are less extravagant with them. The Los Angeles police targeted just five hot spots last year. But both cities have put local commanders in charge of cutting crime on their patches. And, like New York, they are moving beyond putting cops on the dots. They now try to anticipate where crimes will occur based on gang intelligence.

Wesley Skogan, a criminologist at Northwestern University, reckons such methods are the most likely cause of the continued drop in big-city crime. He has diligently tested most of the explanations proffered for Chicago's falling crime rate and has been able to rubbish most of them. Locking lots of people up, for example, may well have helped cut crime a decade ago. But it can't account for the trend of the past few years: the number of Chicagoans behind bars has declined since 1999. The police simply seem to be doing a better job of deterring lawlessness.

The big cities' methods may sound obvious, yet they are surprisingly rare. Many police forces are not divided into neighbourhood units. Oakland's struggling force, for example, is organised into three daily shifts, or “watches”, which makes it hard to hold anybody accountable for steadily rising crime in a district. Even when smaller police forces track emerging hot spots, they often fail to move quickly enough to cool them down.

There is, however, a limit to what even the best police forces can do. Outside New York, in particular, the thin blue line can be very thin indeed. Los Angeles, a city of 3.8m people, tends to have about 500 officers on general patrol at any time. However shrewdly the cops are deployed, they might not have cut crime so dramatically if social trends had not also been moving in the right direction.

The most obvious change is that, thanks in part to high property prices, all three cities are shedding young people. Together they lost more than 200,000 15-to 24-year-olds between 2000 and 2005. That bodes ill for their creativity and future competitiveness, but it is good news for the police. Young people are not just more likely to commit crimes. Thanks to their habit of walking around at night and their taste for portable electronic gizmos, they are also more likely to become its targets.

Another change is that poor Americans have been displaced by poor immigrants—who, as studies have repeatedly shown, are much better behaved than natives of similar means. This trend is symbolised by the disappearance of blacks. Roughly half of America's murder victims and about the same proportion of suspected murderers are black. In five years America's three biggest cities lost almost a tenth of their black residents, while elsewhere in America their numbers held steady.

None of which detracts from the achievement of America's biggest police forces. After all, they managed to cut crime when several trends, from the growing availability of crack cocaine to the continued breakdown of poor families, were against them. It is nice to have some help, but cops do count.

http://www.economist.com/world/na/Pr...ory_id=9302881
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Old June 18th, 2007, 07:18 AM   #128
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Hey I have a question, Ive been researching universities in the Chicago area and UIC is probably my best bet for a major in architecture. Ive read all the stuff on their website, and was wondering if there was anyone on this forum that has gone there, or if there were any locals that could give me some information on how good of a school it is, reputation, cost of living, living on campus off campus, how the school is looked upon by employers ("O, he went to UIC....") that kind of thing or ("Wow, he graduated from UIC!"). Also, I've heard a lot about most of the student body commutes so there is not much happening after class. Is this true? Are there things happening after class such as parties etc. Last thing, where is a popular place for college students to hang out, do homework, etc. Any other input is surely welcome.
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Old June 18th, 2007, 07:48 PM   #129
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Hey I have a question, Ive been researching universities in the Chicago area and UIC is probably my best bet for a major in architecture. Ive read all the stuff on their website, and was wondering if there was anyone on this forum that has gone there, or if there were any locals that could give me some information on how good of a school it is, reputation, cost of living, living on campus off campus, how the school is looked upon by employers ("O, he went to UIC....") that kind of thing or ("Wow, he graduated from UIC!"). Also, I've heard a lot about most of the student body commutes so there is not much happening after class. Is this true? Are there things happening after class such as parties etc. Last thing, where is a popular place for college students to hang out, do homework, etc. Any other input is surely welcome.
check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Illinoi..._of_Technology also.

http://www.iit.edu/

On the west side of the Main Campus are three red brick buildings that were original to Armour Institute, built between 1891 and 1901. In 1938, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe began his 20-year tenure as director of IIT's School of Architecture (1938-1959). The university was on the verge of building a brand new campus, to be one of the nation's first federally-funded urban renewal projects. Mies was given carte blanche in the large commission, and the university grew fast enough during and after World War II to allow much of the ambitious new plan to be realized. From 1943 to 1957, several new Mies buildings rose across campus, culminating in his final, grandest, and most refined work, S.R. Crown Hall, then and now the home of the College of Architecture and a National Historic Landmark.

Mies left IIT, partly by choice, since his private firm was taking off, and partly because then-president Rettaliata saw his shyness as a liability in fundraising attempts. Though Mies had emphasized his wish to complete the campus he had begun, commissions from the late 50s onward were given to Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill (SOM), prompting Mies to never return to the campus that had changed architecture the world over. SOM architect Walter Netsch designed a few buildings, including the new library that Mies had wished to create, all of them similar to Mie's style, but not direct copies. By the late 1960s, campus addition projects were given to SOM's Myron Goldsmith, who had worked with Mies during his education at IIT and so was able to design several new buildings to harmonize well with the original campus. In 1976, the American Institute of Architects recognized the campus as one of the 200 most significant works of architecture in the U.S. A new campus center, designed by Rem Koolhaas, and a new state-of-the-art residence hall, State Street Village, designed by Helmut Jahn, opened in 2003, the first new buildings built on the Main Campus in 32 years, partly due to the difficulty entailed in adding on to an architecturally significant campus without detracting from the campus's character.

Campus architectural tours are available, as of May 2006, both self-guided and docent-led.[1]
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Old June 23rd, 2007, 09:48 PM   #130
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http://www.time.com/time/nation/arti...636385,00.html

Friday, Jun. 22, 2007
Chicago: Next Gay Destination
By AP/KAREN HAWKINS

(CHICAGO)—Never mind that Chicago hosted the 2006 International Gay Games. Or that it has the country's first government-recognized gay neighborhood. Or that up to 400,000 people attend the city's Gay Pride Parade each year.

Chicago has yet to land on the map as one of the nation's most gay-friendly cities, but local officials hope to change that with the Center on Halsted. The $20 million gay community center on Chicago's North Side that officially opened this month.

Designed by the architectural firm Gensler, the 65,000-square-foot, eco-friendly facility has a computer lab, office space for community organizations, a black-box theater, a gym named after tennis star Billie Jean King, a Whole Foods supermarket and a rooftop garden named for Mayor Richard M. Daley. "It's really an amazing dream come true," said Tracy Baim, editor and publisher of Windy City Times, one of the city's oldest gay publications.

There are 160 gay community centers in the nation, and about 10 new facilities each year, said Terry Stone, executive director of the National Association of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community Centers.

Leaders around the country have blamed Chicago's lack of a central organization for keeping the city out of nationwide programs, such as a get-out-the-vote campaign, said Richard Burns, executive director of New York City's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center. Burns noted that community centers are the largest gay organizations in cities around the country, from New York to Los Angeles. "9 a.m. to 11 p.m., it's the queer Grand Central Station of a community," he said. Baim and others say the main hub for the gay community here has moved from place to place over the last 20 years because organizers couldn't afford the building.

Chicago's first openly gay alderman, Tom Tunney, said the AIDS epidemic diverted money elsewhere for a while. "The funding priorities in the '80s were all about AIDS funding," Tunney said. "This would've happened years ago if the AIDS epidemic did not hit so hard in Chicago and this nation."

Those concerns led to the growth of the Howard Brown Health Center, a full-service clinic for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered community whose initial focus was sexually transmitted diseases. Baim said successful fundraising for the clinic's new home in the '90s convinced donors that capital campaigns in the gay community could work.

So when organizers began serious talk about the Center on Halsted several years ago, Mayor Daley offered financing on a former Chicago Park District storage facility located near the heart of the city's official gay neighborhood.

At the Center on Halsted's ribbon-cutting ceremony June 5, Daley called the new facility "an inspiration." "To me, it is a labor of love," Daley said. "This is a center that just is not concrete and steel but names behind it who have worked in the community for so long who have struggled for so long."

Executive Director Modesto Tico Valle said the center will draw people from across the country. "The center is becoming a tourism attraction," he said. "We do want people to come visit Chicago, come visit the center. There's definitely a lot to do here."
___
On the Net:
Center on Halsted: http://www.centeronhalsted.org
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Old June 27th, 2007, 02:41 PM   #131
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Has anyone been to the Chicago History Museum since it reopened? If so, would you say that it's worth the trip, and the $$? Would it be a worthy place to take a visiting friend to?
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Old June 28th, 2007, 07:19 PM   #132
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Has anyone seen Death of a President? It's a faux documentary about the assassination of George W. Bush. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_a_President

Anyway, it features Chicago a lot.
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Old June 28th, 2007, 08:15 PM   #133
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Has anyone seen Death of a President? It's a faux documentary about the assassination of George W. Bush. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_a_President
Shooting a lame duck is to waste a good bullet.
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Old June 30th, 2007, 02:05 AM   #134
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Good news for music fans, looks like the venue formerly known as the World Music Theater will be on its way out in the next few years. Good riddance since the venue location, sound, and site lines in the place are awful.

http://leisureblogs.chicagotribune.c..._park_amp.html


The nation’s largest concert promoter, Live Nation, is looking to sell off several under-performing amphitheaters, including the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre in Tinley Park, a spokesman confirmed Thursday.

There is no timetable for selling the Tinley Park venue, but Vlautin said Live Nation will not sell the land to any buyer who would use it as a concert site. The property is zoned for industrial use.


I always thought it would be cool if the city had a big (10-20k) outdoor amphitheater. When/if Charter One at Northerly Island is decommissioned I wonder if that could happen. Granted finding open space, willing neighborhood and dealing with parking that those venues like to cater to makes a city location problematic.

Milwaukee does it well with their Marcus Amphitheater though it needs a bigger lawn area.
Hopefully it will be destroyed! That place has the evil security/ Tinley Park police, horrible sound and way to expensive everything. And besides, Alpine is a hell of a lot better anyway!
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Old July 1st, 2007, 04:51 PM   #135
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http://www.latimes.com/news/nationwo...ck=1&cset=true

A drive through Chicago's public housing past

Bus tours take visitors, mostly local and white, to the sites of infamous South Side projects. There's not much left to see.


By P.J. Huffstutter, Times Staff Writer
July 1, 2007

CHICAGO — The tourists sitting in the aging school bus pressed their noses to the glass, eager to catch a glimpse of the modern face of Chicago's infamous public housing projects.

There wasn't much left to see.

Along South State Street, tour guide Beauty Turner pointed out the empty dirt lots where the ominous concrete high-rises of the Robert Taylor Homes once stood.

Down the road, she nodded toward construction crews building new brick-and-glass condominiums in the shadows of the Ida B. Wells complex — where drug dealers waged war. Now, white-collar families in gleaming SUVs fill the streets.

Nearby, picnicking couples and Little League baseball games filled a park — an expanse of lush green, Turner noted, that replaced graffiti-covered shops that once catered to the city's poor.

"You may see all this new money, all these new buildings, as a good thing," said Turner, 50, a former public housing resident. But what was here before, she says, was not all bad — it was a place where families lived, children played and meals were shared.

As for the transformation?

"I see it as the death of a community."

Since January, the monthly "Ghetto Bus Tour," as the three-hour outing is known, has been bringing scores of visitors to what were some of the nation's most notoriously crime-ridden areas.

For $20, the curious can wander through the remaining projects and talk to the residents, most of whom are black, about what life there is and was like.

Most of the tourists are white, live locally, and range in age from students in their 20s to retirees in their 70s. Some have rarely ventured this far south of Madison Street, which physically and philosophically divides the city.

"I've read about how awful life was for people here, and I've read about how the city's plans have changed the South Side," said Molly Lazar, 73, who lives in the northern suburb of Winnetka. "I've lived in this city for years, and figured it was about time I see what's happening down here for myself."

Indeed, the city's South Side landscape has radically changed in recent years, thanks to the Plan for Transformation.

Since 1999, the Chicago Housing Authority has been gradually emptying dozens of high-rises as part of a 15-year, multibillion-dollar plan to redesign public housing and create mixedincome neighborhoods.

City and federal officials had deemed the towers of poverty throughout Chicago unlivable. The public housing overhaul is the largest in the country: Nearly 39,000 apartments are being replaced by about 25,000 new or rehabilitated units, according to Chicago Housing Authority spokesman Bryan Zises.

The plan has also generated an enormous amount of controversy. Some who left, and many in the remaining projects, say the process has been alienating and hostile.

That has inspired Turner to launch the tour, as a way to preserve a slice of Chicago's history that few want to remember.

"Our people grew up here, lived and died here. They went to church here, celebrated Christmas and birthdays here," Turner said. "The world needs to know that there was a community in public housing, not just a list of horror stories in the newspapers."

The tours were spearheaded by Turner and the tiny staff of the Residents' Journal, a monthly paper written by former and current housing residents and distributed free across the city. Initially part of the Chicago Housing Authority, the paper has run as an independent venture since 2000 and is published by We the People Media, a nonprofit group that teaches journalism to inner-city youth. Turner is an assistant editor.

The paper's mission is, in part, to keep track of what's happened to the families that have been moved, said Residents' Journal Publisher Ethan Michaeli.

"This is a population that the city is trying to make invisible," Michaeli said. "But everyone knows Beauty, and she knows where everyone's gone."

Over the years, Turner had acted as an impromptu guide — to anyone who asked — of her former home at the Robert Taylor complex. Word of mouth about Turner's escorted tours spread among journalists, filmmakers and local politicians.

By late last year, larger groups began calling the paper's offices, asking for someone to lead them through the South Side. The paper's staff decided to formalize the tour and open it to the public.

A recent tour started at the site of the drab high-rises where Turner used to live. At one time they were known as the world's largest and most violent public housing projects. They lined the expressway for nearly two miles.

Today they are gone.

Standing on a cracked slab of concrete, the two dozen people on the tour listened as Turner told of life here, weaving a narrative of difficulties and misery along with moments of simple sweetness.

Consulting a homemade notebook filled with typed notes, Turner spoke of hot summer afternoons, when children would gather on the lawn and play baseball. On weekends, when the sun set and the temperatures cooled, the air would fill with the scent of grilled hot dogs and freshly baked cookies.

She spoke later about how she had seen a teenage boy gunned down. Moments before, he had been flirting with his girlfriend. "It happened. A lot," Turner said. "The police? They never came until the shooting was over. Or when they came, they made things worse."

The crowd peppered her with questions: How often were there shootings? How many people died here? What were the living conditions like? What happened in the summer when the electricity went out? Or in the winter when the water pipes burst?

"How bad was it really?" wondered Erika Enk, 28, a cancer researcher with the University of Illinois at Chicago. "And where are all your neighbors now?"

City housing officials treat the tours with resignation and a certain amount of disdain. They say the tour guides and residents paint a grim picture of current public housing that doesn't match the reality.

"We're proud of our work," Zises said. "Our new developments look great. Our rehabilitation of the existing units looks great. And everyone's doing much, much better."

A recent report by the Urban Institute, a nonpartisan economic and social policy research organization, tracked 887 original residents of five developments slated for revitalization across the nation, including one in Chicago.

"For the most part, former residents are living in neighborhoods that are dramatically safer and offer a far healthier environment for themselves and their children," the report said. But it also found that many of the residents were having difficulty making ends meet and struggled to find employment.

For people like Carol Wallace, 63, Chicago's remaining projects are still home.

Her apartment at Dearborn Homes, which hasn't yet been rehabbed, was among the stops on the tour. Turner led the crowd up a flight of stairs. The scarred concrete walls, covered in faded graffiti, smelled of urine. A few steps later, the tour reached Wallace's front door. Instead of a screen, a heavy, padlocked steel cage door stood between Wallace and the outside world.

Turner politely greeted Wallace through the bars.

"Hang on a moment! I'll be right back!" Wallace said. A few moments later, she returned with a key and unlocked the cage.

Then, with a grin, she told the tourists: "Welcome to my home."
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 01:11 AM   #136
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Thats sad and yet, interesting.
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Old July 3rd, 2007, 06:49 AM   #137
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Chicago neighborhoods Pictures

Are there any more websites like this one http://neighborhoods.chicago.il.us/ that is still being updated?
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Old July 3rd, 2007, 07:06 AM   #138
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Are there any more websites like this one http://neighborhoods.chicago.il.us/ that is still being updated?
^ Wow, I've never seen that before. That website is a true goldmine
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Old July 3rd, 2007, 07:18 AM   #139
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^ Wow, I've never seen that before. That website is a true goldmine
I agree and I know that the site manager put a lot of work into it but it seems in the last year or two that it has not been updated. I was hoping that maybe there was another site similar.
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Old July 3rd, 2007, 05:09 PM   #140
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^ Yeah, I'm especially interested in seeing how new construction affects stagnant neighborhoods/streetscapes
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