Near West Side 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: The 2000 Near West Side Area Land Use Plan laid the foundation for maintaining the Near West Side’s land use mix and encouraging quality development. Surrounded by the University of Illinois at Chicago, the Illinois Medical District, Fulton Market, the United Center and Kinzie Industrial Corridor, this area has seen major transformation in the past fourteen years, with new mixed-use, commercial and residential development throughout the area. Much of the plan’s thrust has been met: a new National Hellenic Museum now sits at Halsted and Van Buren Streets, the Mary Bartelme Park opened at Adams and Sangamon Streets, farmers markets run weekly, the Fulton Market Innovation District was established and a new Morgan/Lake Green Line El station was built. Parking continues to be an issue, and the development of a comprehensive parking solution, including removal of parking restrictions and identification of parking opportunities continues to be needed. The land use plan suggests retail development along Ashland Avenue between Warren Boulevard and Adams Street should be encouraged, along with the western expansion of Greektown, building on its solid reputation as a draw for local visitors and international tourists alike. [Excerpted from Summary of Near West Side District Plans]