Central Area District Plans Synthesis

Chicago has many citywide and local place-based plans with stated goals for the built environment. Some are municipal; others are nonprofit driven. They prioritize public and private capital investments, provide important context for those investments and help determine how a community should grow and where development should occur.

Planning Context: No other area of the city has received as much planning attention as the Central Area, and for good reason: it is the economic engine and transportation hub of the City of Chicago. It has also become a community of neighborhoods, and a growing academic center for colleges and universities. Beginning with the 2000 plan, A Vision for State Street, Wabash Avenue and Michigan Avenue, Block 37 was singled out as a must-do development, along with improvements to Pritzker Park, façade renovations on what is now Macy’s and the Palmer House Hilton, new residential building conversions and developments, and streetscape and infrastructure improvements. Strengthening Jeweler’s Row through streetscape and branding elements, renovating El stations, repairing sidewalks and addressing surface parking lots are some of the many unfinished projects from this plan. [Excerpted from Summary of Central Area District Plans]