Mayor’s Office of Violence Reduction
A Pilot of the City of Chicago’s Our City, Our Safety Plan in West Garfield Park
h Design Leadership for Community Safety
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Contents Introduction 6 Preface 8 Process 10 Guiding Principles 12 Executive Summary
Activations 16 Coordinated Investments 18 Design Interventions
Approach 24 Research, Engage, & Lift Up Local Ideas 26 Select a Focus Area 28 Identify Design Opportunities 30 Design, Build, Activate 32 Establish Structure for Momentum 34 Measure Impact
Strategies & Guides 38 Community Engagement & Partnerships 40 Community Ambassador Program Development 42 Site Walks 44 Neighborhood Research & Analysis 46 City Department Coordination 48 Philanthropic Investment 50 Asset Mapping 52 Design Discovery 54 Design Session Orchestration 56 Youth Design Leadership Program Development
Next Steps 60 Ongoing Work 62 Reflections
West Garfield Park
Neighborhoods operate on two levels. The first is spatial: neighbors are those who live near one another. The second is relational: to be neighborly is to be connected with others, sharing support, care, and a stake in a collective future. Activation is the process of bringing people together to identify and implement a shared vision for place-based interventions that can make their neighborhoods more vibrant. Neighborhood Activation is an asset-based planning and design process focused on improving community safety block-by-block, led by people who are connected to the place and each other.
Opposite: A map of all the publicly-owned physical space in Chicago—a vast network of assets that people can use to activate and strengthen their neighborhoods through shaping City investments.
Preface We all want to live in neighborhoods where we and our loved ones are safe. But for far too long, issues such as gun violence, disinvestment, and lack of opportunity have prevented many Chicagoans from feeling and being safe in our city. These long-standing inequities were further exacerbated by the events of 2020, as the global pandemic, its disproportionate impact on communities of color, and the emotional toll of witnessing continued police brutality and lack of respect for Black lives left a great number of people— especially Black and Brown residents—more vulnerable than ever. In response, the City of Chicago issued Our City, Our Safety in October 2020, a comprehensive plan for violence reduction work through 2023. The plan includes a focus on reducing the “safety gap” among communities by reclaiming public places as safe spaces and promoting community well-being with stable housing, amenities, commerce, and opportunities. Neighborhood Activation is a community-directed planning and design pilot project aimed at achieving that goal in the areas most impacted by violence and historic disinvestment. Neighborhood Activation has its roots in New York City, where in 2017, as part of the Mayor’s Action Plan for Neighborhood Safety (MAP), Studio Gang worked with the Mayor’s Office for Criminal Justice to develop a Neighborhood Activation Study in Brownsville, Brooklyn, and Morrisania in the Bronx. Since the Study’s completion, both neighborhoods have seen substantial declines in violent crime. Impact analysis of the MAP program revealed that the focus communities experienced a 15 percent decrease in violent crime over 5 years, while control neighborhoods experienced a decrease of only 5 percent (Delgado et al, 2020). Bringing this place-based strategy to Chicago, Neighborhood Activation follows community aspirations and expertise to pilot design strategies and shape public investments for neighborhood safety block-by-block. The initiative is led by the Mayor’s Office of Violence Reduction with support from Studio Gang and the Goldin Institute in partnership with the Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative. Requiring a whole-of-government response to the root causes of violence, the goal of Neighborhood Activation is to implement key programs and projects in the first pilot neighborhood of West Garfield Park, as well as to establish a replicable process to identify and implement community priorities for safety in other areas of Chicago and beyond.
Who? • Lead: Mayor’s Office of Violence Reduction • Partners: Studio Gang, the Goldin Institute, and the Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative • Collaborators: 28th Ward Alderman Jason Ervin, residents, community leaders, and City agencies
Mapping the neighborhood selection criteria. Despite the significant challenges illustrated below, positive assets, activities, and relationships in West Garfield Park offer a foundation for neighborhood safety.
What? A place-based strategy that aims to: • reduce violence by promoting neighborhood safety • follow community direction to shape City investments • establish a replicable process for a whole-of-government response
Where? West Garfield Park was selected as the first pilot community due to the following reasons: • Concentration of serious gun violence • Lack of current City investment • High density of overdose-related EMS responses
Why? • Increase in gun violence in cities across the United States • Significant “safety gap” among communities in Chicago • Historic disinvestment in communities of color • Racism in policing and subsequent lack of trust • Long-standing racial inequities worsened by 2020 events: • COVID-19 global pandemic • Increased unemployment • Murder of George Floyd and other unarmed Black people at the hands of police
MOVR priority community areas not included in INVEST South/West MOVR priority community areas receiving investment from INVEST South/West INVEST South/West priority community area not included in the MOVR priority list Locations with at least 10 opioidrelated EMS responses in 2020 Data provided by the UChicago Crime Lab and the Chicago Department of Public Health
A recursive process that continues to grow in the number of participants, area of focus, and scope of activations The steps of Neighborhood Activation are recursive, with each feeding the others and often occurring simultaneously. As the program continues into the future, leadership, engagement, investments, and focus area evolve and expand. The guiding principles described on the following page remain at the center of the work and continue to inform each step.
Mayor’s Office of Violence Reduction City Departments Studio Gang Goldin Institute Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative
1 Vacant Lot Transformation 1 Civic Institution Activation 5 Programming Initiatives 6 Expanded Services 8 Blocks of Streetscape Improvements 20 Vacant Lot Cleanups
8 Blocks in West Garfield Park
Mayor’s Office of Violence Reduction City Departments Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative Local Design Team Additional Community Partners Additional Outside Support Additional Philanthropic Partners
1 Vacant Lot Transformation 1 Civic Institution Activation 1 Housing Study 1 Major Development Project RFP 1 Wellness Campaign 5+ Programming Initiatives 10+ Expanded Services 20+ Blocks of Streetscape Improvements 30+ Vacant Lot Cleanups
20+ Blocks in West Garfield Park
Mayor’s Office of Violence Reduction City Departments Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative Local Design Team for Garfield Park Local Design Team for Each Additional Neighborhood Community Partners from Each Additional Neighborhood Additional Outside Support Additional Philanthropic Partners
1+ Vacant Lot Transformation 1 Vacant Lot Policy Strategy 1+ Civic Institution Activation 1+ Housing Project 1+ Major Development Project 10+ Programming Initiatives 20+ Expanded Services 40+ Blocks of Streetscape Improvements (60+) Vacant Lot Cleanups
40+ Blocks in West Garfield Park Additional Neighborhoods
Guiding Principles Neighborhood Activation is grounded in a set of guiding principles that reflect the pilot team’s collective experience and our community partners’ expertise. We share these foundational ideas as principles, rather than best practices, because every neighborhood is different and should be approached as such. Teams should embrace the practices that will build capacity and help move the needle on neighborhood safety in their particular place, working to design and realize interventions that are just, relevant, sustainable, and meaningful to the specific people who live there. Most of the principles fall under three categories: design, engagement, and investment. However, all aspects of the work are informed by the following key principle:
Address the complex roots of violence. Safety is not just a
law enforcement issue. Design strategies must address the complex roots of violence: social, economic, environmental, and educational. Safe spaces are hubs for opportunity that bring partners together to address many issues at once.
DESIGN Embrace facilitation. The Neighborhood Activation team’s function is not to make or own decisions. Instead, seek to create and facilitate an ever-widening circle of activated neighbors who will direct design, investment, and implementation. Integrate community values. Neighborhood Activation seeks to build upon the values and principles that community partners use to guide investments in their neighborhoods. Integrate these values into the design process and center them in the vision. Start with what’s there. Every neighborhood has assets that strengthen and support residents. Build off existing assets, plans, and connections to maximize impact of future investments. Enable social connections. Places to gather, socialize, and access cultural resources reduce crime and inequality, promote stewardship and collaboration, and build collective efficacy. Facilitate a process that brings people together and focus on designing spaces that can become platforms for social interaction. Having places to gather, socialize, and access cultural resources can reduce crime and inequality, promote stewardship and collaboration, and build collective efficacy.
Engage the real experts. Community residents and stakeholders are the real experts on their neighborhoods. Engage them at every stage of design and development to ensure community ownership and long-term success.
Coordinate investments. Each City department makes important investments in neighborhoods. Coordinate these investments strategically so they can generate impact greater than the sum of their parts in service of community aspirations.
Actively Remove Barriers. Neighborhood Activation is most effective when everyone is welcomed to contribute around areas of shared concern—especially those who are typically not part of the process. Schedule for, compensate, and meet people where they are to bring those with the most at stake to the table. Support community leadership and stewardship. Democratize the decisionmaking process by creating opportunities for engaged citizens to make collective contributions toward making a place safer. Neighborhood Activation requires community leadership and stewardship, but it is important to understand the difference and support stakeholders to participate in both roles. Prioritize youth. In many high-crime neighborhoods, the combination of youth crew activity and police enforcement restricts youth access to outdoor public space. Consider how youth are engaged in the design process and welcomed into public space, as they are often left out of planning discussions. Find creative ways for young people to contribute and participate.
Co-locate activities, community organizations, and service providers. If programmed and maintained, community rooms and public spaces can bring together different groups of people to generate social cohesion and civic engagement. Direct investment in physical changes, focused services, and a range of programs to support and strengthen impact. Invest in dignity. Data shows that plazas, parks, and streetscape greenery foster positive relationships and improve social cohesion. Invest in shared outdoor spaces that are beautiful and reflect local identity, culture, and history. Provide equity in maintenance. Clean, wellmaintained spaces make a difference in perceptions of safety and trust in government. Many low-income neighborhoods lack maintenance partners with the capacity to sponsor public space programs or to keep spaces open for extended hours. Invest equitably in staffing to ensure the long-term success of Neighborhood Activation strategies. Planning for long-term maintenance is a critical component of great design.
Neighborhood Activation in West Garfield Park
Executive Summary The forces that influence neighborhood safety are diverse, complex, and unevenly distributed across communities. Though a number of areas in Chicago suffer from persistent violence, the Neighborhood Activation pilot project focused on one neighborhood, West Garfield Park, to adapt the originally New York City-based approach to a new context and prove its ability as a model to increase neighborhood safety in Chicago. This report shares process, strategies, and lessons learned from the pilot, which are meant to be instructive for projects in other neighborhoods. Activations The first section of this report shares the key design interventions and investments that have emerged from the Neighborhood Activation process in West Garfield Park. These include the Legler Library Civic Terrance, Community Plaza on Madison, and streetscape improvements, which are accompanied by a series of programmatic and direct service investments. Approach The second section outlines the general, six-step Neighborhood Activation methodology for determining potential design interventions and how to make decisions about where investments should occur. Those steps are: 1. Research, Engage, & Lift Up Local Ideas 2. Select a Focus Area 3. Identify Design Opportunities 4. Design, Build, Activate 5. Establish Structure for Momentum 6. Measure Impact Strategies & Guides The third section explains in more detail how the pilot team operated and the strategies they used for community engagement, site investigations, design, and other activities. Next Steps The final section outlines the future steps needed to continue the work in West Garfield Park and offers recommendations on how Neighborhood Activation can evolve in future initiatives. Although every neighborhood is uniquely complex and will require different strategies to address the root causes of violence, the lessons learned and principles uncovered from the pilot can serve as a useful reference and guide. 12
A Vibrant Past Informs the Future Above: Historic Madison Street, looking East at the Marbro Theater Once located at 4110 W Madison Street in West Garfield Park, the Marbro Theater was a 4,000-seat movie palace and one of many thriving businesses that once studded the historic commercial corridor. At left: The intersection of Madison Street and Pulaski Road, looking North This intersection with a North-South thoroughfare was once a hub of retail activity in the historic shopping district. It featured department stores, movie palaces, hotels, and other amenities, serving as a “mini downtown” for much of the West Side of Chicago. Though many of the structures have since fallen into disuse and disrepair, these strong historical memories drive residents to work toward a better future for this part of West Garfield Park.
June 2021 Groundbreaking at the Community Plaza on Madison
Street pole banners designed in collaboration with the Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative Furniture and programming on the Legler Library front lawn
Activations Three short-term design interventions emerged as immediate outcomes of the Neighborhood Activation process in West Garfield Park. These key projects will be implemented with partners and coordinated with programmatic and direct service investments by 2022.
Legler Library Civic Terrace
Through conversations with the community and with Chicago Public Library staff, it became evident that the recently renovated Legler Library offers activities, services, and programs that address issues related to improving neighborhood safety. However, many residents are not aware that the library is open and have not felt safe going there in the past. In response, the team gathered ideas from community members for making the library grounds more welcoming. Some of these ideas have already been implemented as of Summer 2021, such as hanging banners on the building. Additional ideas will be incorporated into designs for a future campus tying Legler Library and Melody School that includes activated outdoor spaces and safe pedestrian connections.
Community Plaza on Madison
Community members identified the importance of maintaining, beautifying, and transforming vacant lots—many of which are City-owned—into valuable neighborhood assets that bring people together, keep young people engaged, and encourage a sense of ownership and pride to combat violence. The team identified that, within a year, the City can clean and green approximately 20 vacant lots in West Garfield Park and transform one into a community plaza with a multi-sport court, furniture, programming, and more.
Studies have shown that tree cover and street-level improvements can reduce violence, and community members have similarly emphasized the importance of these investments in improving the overall sense of safety in the area. For greatest impact, the team focused on improving the streets around Legler Library, Melody School, and the Community Plaza. Short-term investments completed by Summer 2021 include tree planting, pedestrian refuge islands, raised crosswalks, lighting improvements, street pole banners, and vacant lot cleaning and greening. These investments are part of a long-term strategy for maintaining clean and safe streets in West Garfield Park.
All Planned City Investments To most effectively leverage City efforts for neighborhood safety and community wellbeing, the initiative coordinates physical, programmatic, and direct service investments. For instance, furniture and a multi-sport court on the vacant lot on Madison are accompanied by a full programming calendar, as well as a holistic safety strategy with street outreach services to ensure success.
PHYSICAL INVESTMENTS Short-Term (May-September 2021) • Phase 1 completion of the Community Plaza • Design of exterior gathering and learning spaces on Legler Library lawns • Installation of a digital marquee to publicize community events • Cleaning and greening of city-owned lots • Installation of signs on city-owned vacant lots to support community engagement • Garfield Park path resurfacing • Tree planting • Lighting improvements • Street pole banners • Pedestrian improvements Medium-Term (October-December 2021) • Design of a Peace Park on a vacant lot • Identify affordable housing opportunities • Interactive fence at Melody School Long-Term (2022) • Phase 2 completion of the Community Plaza • Legler and Melody alley transformation • Sidewalk and street painting • Healthy food grocer • Businesses in vacant storefronts on Madison • Wellness Center • Additional vacant lot transformations • Supportive/affordable housing • Owner occupied building repair fund • Vacant lot activation fund 16
PROGRAMMATIC INVESTMENTS Short-Term (May-September 2021) • CDPH opioid intervention strategy • Legler Library YOUmedia and makerspace programming • Food distribution in Legler parking lot • Melody School summer camp • Community Plaza summer programming • Rollin’ Recreation (activity van offering sports, games, and fitness activities) • Gold Dome summer programming • Mobile dispensing Buprenophine • Mobile health unit assigned to Jackson and Pulaski Medium-Term & Long-Term (2021-2022) • Implement opioid intervention strategy • Roll out the alternate response program • Madison and Pulaski corridor plan • Ongoing design sessions • Enable residents to activate vacant lots • Black Culture Week
DIRECT SERVICE INVESTMENTS Short-Term (May-September 2021) • Improve job opportunity distribution • Coordination between outreach and CPD • NPI project implementation • Co-location of 11th District DCOs in Legler • Increased foot patrol around Legler + bike patrol and mission cars on Madison • Co-responder pilot • Homeless outreach and prevention Medium-Term & Long-Term (2021-2022) • DFSS youth prevention and intervention • Public health vending machines • Distribution of fentanyl test strips • Pooled funds for business loans • Community Collaborative Projects Fund • Private security for Community Plaza
Community Plaza on Madison The Neighborhood Activation team has supported community residents, the Chicago Park District, and Site Design Group during the design development of the 4008 W Madison Community Plaza. The Phase 1 design includes a roller rink/multi-purpose court, flexible event area, nature play zone, and picnic area. Phase 2 will build on this scheme to include permanent lighting, furniture, canopies, and more. The above sketch was developed by Site Design Group. Phase One
1. Clean & fence lot 2. Multi-sport court 3. Temporary Furniture and Lighting 4. Park District and CBO Programming 5. Safety strategy
6. Canopy structure 7. Stage & DJ booth 8. Enhanced Lighting 9. Permanent Furniture 10. Chicago Park District/Community Based Organization (CBO) led Programming 11. Business Investment 12. Safety strategy
13. Development Proposal (community wellness center, sport facility, grocery, and/ or housing) 14. Establish shared management structure or transfer management from Chicago Park District to CBO 15. Safety Strategy Goldin Institute
Pulaski Corridor The first Neighborhood Activation design interventions for West Garfield Park are concentrated along the Pulaski Corridor, from Madison Street to Jackson Boulevard. These blocks were identified as having incredible potential for improving neighborhood safety, and they were chosen in response to both community direction and the concentration of existing assets, including Legler Library and Melody School.
Legler Library Civic Terrace With coordinated improvements, the area surrounding Legler Library has the potential to act as a hub for employment opportunities, youth engagement, culture, and community, and thus address the root causes of violence. By transforming the currently unsafe space around the building into a Civic Terrace, NA seeks to connect residents to recent investments and other opportunities inside Legler, including a new YOUmedia recording studio for teens, an artist-in-residence program, an on-site social worker, and a makerspace. Goldin Institute
Community Plaza on Madison Transforming a vacant, City-owned lot into a Community Plaza was identified as an impactful, immediate investment in neighborhood safety in West Garfield Park. The short-term activations of Summer 2021 are nested in a longer-term vision that will bring additional investments to the site.
Approach A critical insight gained from extensive engagement with experts, agencies, and residents, as well as a broad review of related literature and studies, is that shifts in neighborhood safety and well-being require coordinated changes in the built environment, programming, policy, and practice. These shifts cannot be conceived in a vacuum or only by the City, communities, designers, or consultants. All of these actors must come together to build on one another’s experience and expertise to make lasting change. To facilitate this coordination and collaboration, our team used a specific process that is illustrated in the following pages. The steps of this process are not discrete (rather, they overlap and influence one another), but each is important and specific. They are documented here, divided into six themes, to help others follow and build on this framework to bring more people into the process and realize greater positive change in neighborhood safety.
1. Research, Engage, & Lift Up Local Ideas See, Listen, & Learn
2. Select a Focus Area
Find Areas of Greatest Opportunity
3. Identify Design Opportunities Discover Points of Convergence
4. Design, Build, Activate
Develop a Nested & Phased Strategy
5. Establish Structure for Momentum Build a Foundation for Lasting Change
6. Measure Impact
Document Progress Over Time
At left: Youth Design Leaders in West Garfield Park sketch and collage ideas for a healthier and safer neighborhood as part of a curriculum led by the Chicago Mobile Makers in partnership with the Neighborhood Activation team. Images courtesy of Nolis Anderson Goldin Institute
1. Research, Engage, & Lift Up Local Ideas See, Listen, & Learn
Neighborhood Activation requires a wholeof-government approach that is grounded in community aspirations, relevant precedents, and the physical, social, and political realities of each neighborhood. The methodology for gathering information includes the five steps outlined below.
C. Engage & Partner with Community Stakeholders Community residents and stakeholders are the real experts on their neighborhoods. It’s paramount to follow what they determine will work, what doesn‘t, what‘s underway, and what needs support to get started.
A. Engage City Agencies & Departments Deep but often siloed knowledge of current initiatives, planned capital investments, and policy exists among agency employees. As a first step, interview agencies to centralize their knowledge base. Then, establish weekly working group meetings to facilitate collaboration.
D. Investigate Sites Walk the sites, meet the neighbors, and experience the programs to know how to reinforce and connect what already works.
B. Engage Philanthropic Organizations Look for strategic partnerships with philanthropic organizations. Learn from their experience investing in neighborhood safety causes. Actively fundraise to support implementation and build local capacity.
E. Review Literature, Documents, & History Search out information and data points that indicate effective strategies for improving social cohesion and economic opportunity through the built environment. Build a foundation of knowledge about the history, culture, and urban condition of the focus neighborhood in particular. Examine a wide variety of documents, including reports, planning initiatives, maps, and photos.
Articles from various news sources supplemented the team’s understanding of the key people, places, and programs on the west side of Chicago. 24
Community-led neighborhood tours are an important part of the engagement and site investigation process. Here, the team hears from community members on Madison Street about their memories of and aspirations for the space while biking through the neighborhoood with Frank Latin and the Westside Media Project.
Meeting with community leaders at Breakthrough Urban Ministries.
Conversations with street outreach workers and others at the Institute for Nonviolence helped the team develop an understanding of the different stages of violence involvement. Visualizing this understanding was a useful tool for discussing policy initiatives and service investments with City officials.
Sitting down with Tony Raggs, Safe Streets Program Manager at the Alliance of Local Support (ALSO). Goldin Institute
2. Select a Focus Area
Find Areas of Greatest Opportunity To drive lasting and positive change, wisely invest resources, and accomplish the greatest good, a key part of the Neighborhood Activation process is to identify opportunities where public action can strengthen ongoing community initiatives, agency efforts, and planned capital expenditures. A two-tiered approach that considers challenges and opportunities—including their overlap— allows the team to locate specific zones of a few blocks each where targeted action will reverberate for the broader community. This research and mapping work must be inclusive and transparent, and conducted in collaboration with communities and agencies. A. Understand Challenges Analyze, study, and engage to identify significant challenges that decrease neighborhood safety. To develop a more complete understanding of these challenges, examine the following data sets: • Concentration of serious gun violence • Lack of current city investment • High density of overdose-related responses Community-identified challenges in West Garfield Park
B. Find Opportunity Once the areas with the greatest need have been identified, locate the areas with the greatest opportunity. Opportunity is defined here as the points of convergence within the following data sets: • Critical mass of civic assets & investments • Underutilized public space • Historic memory & cultural value
Community-identified assets in West Garfield Park
Targeted Civic Assets Park 2019 & 2020 Shooting Incidences (data provided by the University of Chicago Crime Lab) Locations with at least 10 opioid-related EMS responses in 2020 (data provided by the Chicago Dept of Public Health) Top 5% of blocks that account for ~30% of all shootings across East/West Garfield Park, Austin, Humboldt Park, and North Lawndale over the last 5 years (data provided by the University of Chicago Crime Lab) Publicly-Owned Vacant Land Vacant Property
Challenges The blocks within the selected focus area suffer from significant challenges that contribute to a lack of a sense of safety. Clusters of shooting incidents are dispersed throughout the neighborhood, but particularly south of Jackson Boulevard where vacant properties and lots are abundant. Opioid-related EMS responses are concentrated along Pulaski Road, a North-South thoroughfare with heavy vehicle and pedestrian traffic. Opportunities Despite these challenges, positive assets, activities, and relationships in these blocks offer a foundation for neighborhood safety. Most notably, memories of the historic retail corridor on Madison Street drive a collective desire for change. Recent investments in Legler Library, Melody School, and Garfield Park provide a network of civic opportunity to build from. Existing service providers and community-based organizations offer a strong base and commitment to improving the neighborhood. Goldin Institute
3. Identify Design Opportunities Discover Points of Convergence
Neighborhood safety involves a wide variety of issues, all of which need to be addressed simultaneously to make lasting change. After identifying a focus area by listening and learning from City agencies, community members, academic researchers, and others, the process for identifying design opportunities focuses on the connections, overlaps, and common threads between what the community needs and what the City can provide. A. Connect the Dots Analyze findings from the engagement process to find alignments and gaps between community aspirations and city capacity. Categorize issues to understand what’s there and what’s missing.
Youth Engagement Violence Prevention
B. Find Productive Overlaps Understand where overlapping existing programs and investments can have the most impact. Add to what’s there with what’s possible.
Culture & Community
C. Map Out Possibilities Organize what’s possible into design opportunities that build on the common threads between what the community needs and what the city can provide. Tie these opportunities to place.
Jobs & Small Businesses
Health & Wellness
The “policy wheel” is a graphic expression of the broad range of issues that affect neighborhood safety. Organized as a circle, it is immediately clear when one category or another is absent and needs to be added for a safer community. 28
Community ideas for the Madison and Pulaski intersection in Garfield Park. The team developed a blank canvas to draw through ideas with community members in a series of virtual and inperson public design sessions. These sessions helped the team find alignments between community aspirations and City capacity, toward identifying design opportunities.
Community ideas for making the front of Legler Library more welcoming. During one public design session, community members suggested bringing signs, banners, lighting, and greenery to the front of the Library to advertise its recent re-opening and make it feel safer.
Sketching ideas with community members. On a neighborhood tour, the team began to map out possibilities alongside leaders from Breakthrough Urban Ministries.
4. Design, Build, Activate
Develop a Nested & Phased Strategy After design opportunities have been identified, they must be developed into projects ready for implementation. The team uses the following steps to most effectively leverage City efforts for long-term change through a nested and phased approach.
B. Design with Time Visualize the temporal overlaps in existing and proposed programming calendars, outreach and service initiatives, and physical changes to the built environment. Bring these efforts together in time and space for greatest impact.
A. Coordinate Investments For greatest impact, Neighborhood Activation must coordinate physical, programmatic, and direct service investments as part of a wholegovernment response to the root causes of violence in a neighborhood.
C. Coordinate Partners To develop projects as nested proposals, coordinate implementation, design, community, and philanthropic partners. Roles must be defined for each project in the short-, medium-, and long-term.
Programmatic Investments Movie nights are one of the many progams offered by the Park District that provide activities for families and youth.
Physical Investments Painted bump-outs or curb extensions are an easily implemented physical investment by CDOT that can improve the pedestrian experience while also bringing art, color, and a sense of neighborhood pride to the streets.
Direct Service Investments Investing in service providers, like the MAAFA Redemption Project, is crucial to providing a holistic response to the root causes of violence. 30
street pole banners
roller rink! farmer’s market! movie night!
on-site social worker
food distribution! safe passage
outdoor wifi & furniture
murals & art
improved lighting vacant lot cleaning & greening substance use services
homelessness outreach tree planting
5. Establish Structure for Momentum Build a Foundation for Lasting Change
B. Define Roles & Responsibilities As the work progresses, define roles among City departments, community partners, design leads, and others. Establish lead and support responsibilities for each project, program, or initiative.
To ensure implementation is successful and Neighborhood Activation is sustained, plan for a transition to a long-term structure for the work with defined roles and responsibilities. A. Build Capacity Early in the project, bring partners along throughout the process of selecting a focus area, conducting research and engagement, and developing projects for implementation. Build a shared understanding to serve as a foundation for lasting change.
C. Transition to Long-Term Leadership Understand current relationships and responsibilities among partners, and then map out how they might change in the future. Use this understanding to establish long-term leadership and momentum.
Committed to the process
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Dynamic Definitions Thinking together about what it means to serve in the role of a facilitator, leader, or owner is an important part of Neighborhood Activation—as is developing a shared understanding that defining roles and responsibilities is an ongoing, iterative, and reflective process. The above post-its are the result of a brainstorming session that included the pilot project team and community leaders. 32
Short-term partner map. In the project’s initial stages, the team convenes and facilitates many of the partners and contributers to Neighborhood Activation. Above is an illustration of some of the partners who contributed to the work in West Garfield Park.
Long-term partner map. As the project moves forward, it is important to collaboratively map out how leadership might change in the future. Goldin Institute
6. Measure Impact
Document Progress Over Time To better inform how Neighborhood Activation should expand and evolve, it is important to assess the efficacy of ongoing and previous efforts. Consider neighborhood safety both as a disease and as a chronic illness, as it possesses qualities of both. Learn from public health research about the best ways to assess the impact of violence reduction investments, and invest in research partners to set a baseline and document progress over time. One important way of analyzing the impact of Neighborhood Activation is to research changes in collective efficacy and social cohesion within focus areas. These indicators measure the degree to which social ties among neighborhood residents are activated to achieve collective goals, such as public safety. It’s critical to note that the ultimate arbiters of real change are neighborhood residents and stakeholders. They should decide what metrics are valuable and what progress means.
A. Assess Quantitative and Qualitative Data Use civic data sets to analyze neighborhood patterns and trends related to public safety. Complement and compare this analysis with interviews and observation to understand the underlying causes behind emerging patterns. B. Conduct Systematic Social Observation Directly observe possible changes in the neighborhood by spending time there and documenting how people are using different spaces. Engage trained research assistants, citizen scientists, or community ambassadors to track how the spaces are being used at different times of day, days of the week, etc. C. Facilitate Citizen-Led Oral Testimony Conduct annual in-depth interviews with key stakeholders, leaders, and area residents about their perceptions of public safety and collective efficacy. Train community members to interview each other to reduce the effects of power dynamics between “researchers” and “subjects” in the oral testimony process.
Measurement plan and analytic strategies for evaluating the Mayor’s Action Plan for Neighborhood Safety (New York). January 11, 2019 MAP Evaluation Update 2. FIGURE 2: PERCENT CHANGE IN AVERAGE MONTHLY CRIME RATES BEFORE MAP (JANUARY 2010 TO JUNE 2014) AND AFTER MAP (JULY 2014 TO DECEMBER 2019) Reported Crimes per 10,000 Population
7 Major Felonies
– 7.5% – 3.8%
– 0.5% – 4.9%
– 6.3% – 3.6%
– 9.5% – 6.4%
–15.4% – 2.2%
MAP Developments (N=17) NYCHA Developments Not in MAP (N=275) Source: Reported crimes (“complaints”) recorded by the New York City Police Department and analyzed by John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
Percent change in average monthly crime rates before and after the Neighborhood Activation The violent results were still encouraging. Three reported TheNew results remained encouraging. In six of thedecline in work in York indicates a substantial crime. seven offense categories, average crime rates fell more in MAP developments than in non-MAP developments. The average rate of felony offenses included in NYPD’s 7 majors category, for example, declined 7.5 percent in MAP developments but only 3.8 percent in non-MAP developments. Changes in other crime rates also favored MAP. Reports of person felonies dropped 6.3 percent in MAP areas but just 3.6 percent in NYCHA developments not involved in MAP. Reports of
crime outcomes (NYPD seven majors, person felonies, and property felonies) showed significant declines ( p < .10) in MAP developments relative to pre-MAP trends. Other outcomes, however, showed only small declines or no declines. Crime may have dropped after the launch of MAP, but the rate of decline was not significantly different than the pre-MAP period. Institute More importantly, the single-groupGoldin ITS analysis characterizes before and after trends in one place,
Principal Tillman leading Mayor Lightfoot, Commissioner Biagi, TJ Crawford, and others on a site walk after the groundbreaking at 4008 W Madison
Presenting an update on Neighborhood Activation at weekly Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative coordinating call
Youth Design Leaders using collage to develop design ideas
Strategies & Guides Building on previous work, the Neighborhood Activation team, in partnership with residents and community leaders in West Garfield Park, have developed a series of strategies and guides that support the implementation of this work. This section offers more specificity on how the team operated as a facilitator, resource, and connector between the community and City departments, describing techniques that span different steps in the Neighborhood Activation approach and explaining specific methods of engagement, design, and collaboration. As each neighborhood and timeline is different, this section provides a foundation of techniques that should be selected from, added to, and adapted to meet their context.
1. Community Engagement & Partnerships 2. Community Ambassador Program Development 3. Site Walks 4. Neighborhood Research & Analysis 5. City Department Coordination 6. Philanthropic Investment 7. Asset Mapping 8. Design Discovery 9. Design Session Orchestration 10. Youth Design Leadership Program Development
Community Engagement & Partnerships Community Partners are an essential part of the Neighborhood Activation team. They are the real experts on their neighborhood and have the most at stake. The City and consultants’ role is to build a process that aligns with community partner values and enables them to participate as leaders and stewards of the work. Some of a community’s greatest assets are the people, groups, and associations who are already doing great work in the neighborhood. To build upon the contributions and talents of different people, Neighborhood Activation relies on an ever-widening circle of activated neighbors. Rather than making or owning decisions, the team aimed to faciliate this growing network in directing design, investment, and implementation in West Garfield Park. The Neighborhood Activation team relied on direct community engagement as part of every stage of the design process. This included presenting at town halls, attending community events, doing neighborhood walkabouts, co-hosting design sessions, analyzing surveys, organizing focus groups, and conducting community-based oral testimony through one-on-one interviews with residents, leaders, and potential partners. The Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative (GPRWC), a consortium of community and institutional organizations working in Garfield Park, became a key community partner for the Neighborhood Activation team. Beginning in early 2021, the GPWC met weekly with the Mayor’s Office, Studio Gang, the Goldin Institute, and others to contribute ideas for shaping investments and design strategies, raise awareness through town halls and other community forums, co-host design sessions, and more. Through this partnership, the team sought to promote and build upon the GPWC core values and support their vision for Black Culture Wellness.
What is Black Culture Wellness?
The practice of Black Culture Wellness involves the promotion and practice of life affirming values, principles, images, and messages that celebrate the best of the Black community via institutions, edifices, interactions, entertainment and expressions.
Tenets • • • • • • • •
Self Efficacy Shared (Community) Values Cultural Expression Health and Wellness Practice Healthy Foods Clean Environment Fair Policing and Law Enforcement Equitable Community and Corporate Investment
See Appendix for a summary of the team’s community engagement findings. 38
Strategies & Guides
How to do it: 1. Engage equitably and inclusively
Welcome everyone to contribute around areas of shared concern, especially those who aren’t typically included in the process. Use these engagement opportunities to discuss potential partnerships with a diverse range of stakeholders.
2. Partner with local groups
Assemble a mix of people representing local groups to help expand the team’s perspective and capacity. Encourage the group to learn how to work together and determine who represents their interest.
3. Actively Remove Barriers
It’s not enough just to invite the public to participate. Great engagement recognizes that it is the responsibility of the facilitators to make conversations accessible so that everyone can contribute.
4. Support community leadership
Community leaders can help neighbors decide where to invest their energies and talents. Leaders can come from anywhere, not just the head of the table. Focus on empowering them and uplifting their values rather than telling them what to do.
Types of Engagement: • • • • • • • • • •
One-on-one interviews Focus groups Town Hall presentations Community design sessions Surveys Neighborhood walkabouts Door-to-door engagement Community Ambassadors (see p. 19) Youth Design Leadership (see p. 35) Interactive website to solicit input
WHEN TO DO IT:
FACILITATE to build trust
MODERATE to clarify arguments
MEDIATE to help decision making
Before the discussion begins
Make sure everyone feels welcome
Set ground rules for determining who speaks/ when/for how long
Make sure everyone has the information needed to be an informed participant
As people are speaking
Frame the discussion so that everyone can contribute their knowledge
Remind participants not to assume they already know what another person will say
Protect the opinions not shared by everyone
When things go off-course
Encourage participants to fully listen to each other
Emphasize that the work to date is just a start, and it is up to the group to determine where it goes
If people bring up past grievances, re-orient the discussion forward, not backward
Community Ambassador Program Development Community Ambassadors is a program developed by the Neighborhood Activation team to bring more voices to the table by paying and training community members to interview their peers and neighbors about their own experiences and aspirations for neighborhood improvements. Too often, the voices of the people with the most at stake in public investments are conspicuously absent from the conversation. To ensure the voices of Garfield Park neighbors were heard, the team adopted an “oral testimony” strategy that relies on extended, semistructured interviews to let participants share their perspectives and experiences in their own words, and convey their understandings of the best strategies to achieve true community safety. Often oral testimony research is colored by power dynamics between “researchers” and “subjects.” We decided to address this by inviting neighborhood residents to interview each other about their own experiences and aspirations for neighborhood improvements. In the pilot program, Ambassadors interviewed over 40 Garfield Park neighbors using basic, qualitative research techniques, including the theory and practice of appreciative inquiry. In the future, Community Ambassadors could encourage teams to interview a wide range of neighborhood residents or could have cohorts of Ambassadors reach out to targeted groups, such as: • Youth • Elderly • Business Owners • Religious and Spiritual Communities
Strategies & Guides
What is Appreciative Inquiry?
Appreciative Inquiry is a way of asking questions that focuses on what people care about to uncover the values, beliefs, and ideas that drive change. Traditional Approach
Identifies what’s wrong
Builds on what’s working
Looks to the past
Looks to the future
Example Questions 1. What are your favorite streets in the community? 2. Where do you feel the most safe? 3.What are things about the community that make you feel less safe and what actions can be taken to address them? 4. What is something you know about the history of the community that you would like to share? 5. What is something in the community that gives you hope?
How to do it: 1. Develop a plan for the program
Set a start date and program duration. The pilot ran for one month. Determine the target cohort based on which demographics are currently missing or underrepresented in the engagement process. Assign roles and responsibilities, including a program coordinator and interview analysis partner.
2. Secure funding
Engage with philanthropic entities to cover a range of potential costs associated with each Ambassador cohort, such as: • Staffing, including Program Coordination and Training • Stipends for Ambassadors ($40 per interview/recording upload and paid training at $15 per hour suggested) • Data analysis of interviews • Zoom accounts or other online meeting tools that allow recordings for virtual interviews
3. Recruit participants
Develop a flyer that includes a program description, important dates, payment information, and a link to the application. The application should include basic questions about relationships to the neighborhood, experience conducting interviews, and interest in the program. Leverage existing relationships with community based organizations and partners to advertise the program among their constituents.
4. Interview & select applicants
Call each applicant and ask them about their experiences and interests to get a better understanding of their conversational skills and connections to the neighborhood. Prioritize applicants who have strong ties to the neighborhood and seem comfortable holding a conversation for at least 30 minutes.
5. Train the selected Ambassadors
Hold two 2-hour training sessions for selected Ambassadors. In the first session, provide overviews of Neighborhood Activation, the Community Ambassadors Program, Appreciative Inquiry, and interview procedures such as recording. In the second session, Ambassadors identify the primary questions they want to explore and practice semi-structured appreciative interviews with their peers.
6. Hold weekly check-ins with Ambassadors
Meet weekly with the Ambassadors to discuss their experiences conducting interviews. What was successful? What was difficult? Who did they interview? What did they learn? Answer any technical questions about uploading procedures, software issues, invoice and payment submissions etc.
7. Analyze the interviews
Bring on a third party to transcribe the recorded interviews using AI tools and analyze them for concrete ideas and common themes. The analysis should be validated with the Ambassadors as part of the closing of the program. The ideal partner would assist the team in: • Identifying common themes and concerns • Highlighting aspirations and ideas for programmatic or physical interventions that have a broad resonance • Review the analysis with the Ambassadors themselves • Develop a report to share with the community and City • Create a template to inform future Ambassador cohorts
“Give the community some hope, a place for the kids to go. They don’t have nowhere to go . . . Bring more activities and build up the Park District so the young generation could have somewhere to go . . . If they have no hope, then they’re gonna turn to the streets . . . See what the young people want. Of course, they want movies. They’re tired of driving everywhere all over town to go to the theater, go bowling, go skating. That needs to be brought over to the community.” -April 2021 Ambassador Interview
Site walks offer a dual opportunity for the team. In addition to conducting architectural analysis of the area, having impromptu conversations with people near the sites is key to informing the team’s understanding of community aspirations and insights.
To build relationships and develop a deeper understanding of the neighborhood, the team made weekly visits to the sites within the focus area. While many of these visits involved taking measurements and photos to inform the design process, the majority also included an element of community engagement, ranging from formal to informal meetings and conversations. By consistently being present on site, the team worked to build trust with key stakeholders, including school principals, religious leaders, civic leaders, street outreach, and others.
How to do it: Engagement • • • • • • •
Explore the neighborhood with resident leaders who can facilitate connections Share information about the work when approached and asked Meet people where they are, whether on the street, in businesses, or in civic spaces Talk to people of all ages to hear different perspectives Walk the neighborhood at different times of day Build relationships by showing up often Sketch ideas with others over prepared base drawings of the site
Analysis • • • •
Legler Library site analysis sketch 42
Strategies & Guides
Prepare base architectural drawings and maps to sketch over at different scales Set a base point and take measurements of key site dimensions Take photos with reference elements for scale Supplement sketches with notes and perceptions about the space
Breakthrough Urban Ministries
West Side Media Project
Driving, walking, and biking through the neighborhood with community leaders. Goldin Institute
Neighborhood Research & Analysis Conducting thorough research and analysis is a crucial first step to designing from a more informed perspective. To build a foundation of knowledge, the team must review and analyze existing work, ongoing initiatives, and the history, culture, and urban conditions of the neighborhood. Before jumping into design, the pilot team spent months surveying literature on the relationship between the built environment and crime prevention, mental and physical health, and access to opportunity. To supplement this general understanding of designing for neighborhood safety, the team also focused on understanding Citywide initiatives and how they relate to the specific context of West Garfield Park by reviewing a variety of documents, including:
How to do it:
• • • • • •
recent and historic City initiatives planning documents zoning maps aerials timelines statistics
Review previous studies, plans, and initiatives, both citywide and neighborhood-specific
Study the cultural history of the neighborhood and community
Examine current and historic photos, maps, timelines, and statistics Survey historic and contemporary literature on neighborhood safety to learn from othersʼ work
Draw, annotate, and illustrate findings
It’s important, however, to go beyond conducting research and take the step of analyzing the findings by drawing, annotating, and illustrating the information. This analysis step allows the team to begin identifying design opportunities that build on existing work and that are grounded in an understanding of the neighborhood context.
See Appendix for a summary of the team’s research and analysis findings. 44
Strategies & Guides
The above city-wide and neighborhood-specific documents helped the team develop ideas about where Neighborhood Activation fits within the broader context of health and safety in the city of Chicago. They also supplemented the team’s engagement efforts to inform questions for community stakeholders. See bibliography for full resource list.
City Department Coordination
City Departments have the capacity to make important investments in neighborhoods. Understanding hierarchy, roles, and decision-making processes among the various agencies is key to coordinating their work for a whole-of-government approach to Neighborhood Activation. During the beginning of the pilot program, the team spent weeks meeting with deputy mayors, department commissioners, program directors, and others from each City department to gain a better understanding of their investment capacities for West Garfield Park. By documenting these conversations, following up with requests for more information, reviewing all relevant documents shared by departments, and mapping out organizational hierarchies, the team was able to begin laying out what was possible in terms of City investments. With this understanding, the team set up biweekly working group calls among complementary agencies to foster information sharing and explore possibilities for collaboration. This process resulted in a working document of all possible investments sorted by department, which served as a critical tool for understanding the menu of options for community partners to choose from as they began to direct investments. Designating a specific team member to act as a community/City liaison is critical to ensuring that all information is shared for productive collaboration throughout the process. Part of this work includes making connections among City department representatives and community groups when appropriate.
How to do it: 1. Meet with City Department leaders
Provide an overview of Neighborhood Activation and ask the department representatives to share more about their work. Use this opportunity to learn about existing initiatives and spend time brainstorming together about what the department could bring to the neighborhood.
2. Review and document information
Following the initial introductory call, reach out for more information on any documents or initiatives mentioned. Gather all resources and review the information to begin drawing connections between existing civic tool kits and community aspirations.
3. Set up working groups
Set up weekly or biweekly calls among complementary agencies to foster information sharing and explore possibilities for coordination. Identify opportunities for collaboration between City agencies and community-based organizations.
4. Develop a menu of options
Organize all possible investments into a working document sorted by department. Present this as a menu of options for community partners.
See Appendix for a summary of the team’s City coordination findings. 46
Strategies & Guides
City of Chicago Organizational Chart Entities highlighted in blue have been engaged by the Neighborhood Activation pilot team
Philanthropic investment makes it possible to carry out and sustain the Neighborhood Activation work, as well as to support community based organizations’ programming and engagement efforts that build social cohesion and promote neighborhood safety. The team connected with a broad range of philanthropies to explore funding for neighborhood-specific activation and support for community organization programming and engagement. A key part of this process included connecting local community partners directly to potential funders and supporting them in identifying funding needs, developing a pitch, applying to public and private grants, and establishing short- and long-term plans for investment. By supporting local organizations in this way, the team sought to bring more resources to the table to sustainably enact Neighborhood Activation investments for greater impact.
Strategies & Guides
How to do it: •
Leverage the City’s network of supporters
Clearly communicate timeline and needs
Directly connect local partners to funders
Assist community organizations in applying to grants to build capacity long-term
Periodically update philanthropic partners to collaborate on potential contributions
Leverage pooled funds to bring organizations together
Seek unrestricted funds to inspire co-design processes
Support from the Polk Bros. Foundation made it possible to host a Youth Design Leadership program focused on bringing young people into the Neighborhood Activation process and introducing them to the fundamentals of design. For more information on the program, see p. 56. Goldin Institute
Assets are the people, places, and programs that make a community strong. Every community has them. Identifying and building on these strengths is central to the success of Neighborhood Activation.
Although West Garfield Park is suffering from a number challenges affecting neighborhood safety, there is also significant opportunity in its assets, including strong historical memories of thriving Black commerce along Madison Street, a high concentration of underutilized public land, and recent investments by the City in certain community-facing civic institutions near Pulaski Road. By mapping these assets, the team was led to focus on the blocks surrounding the recently renovated Legler Library and the new Space to Grow play yard at Melody School, bounded by Madison Street to the North, Pulaski Road to the West, Springfield Avenue to the East, and Jackson Boulevard to the South. The intent in focusing on these specific blocks was to produce a greater impact by strategically investing in and building on existing opportunities. By adding physical and programmatic investments in a small geographic area, the goal is to link this space to other safe spaces over time to increase neighborhood safety and empower residents to reclaim their community, block by block.
Strategies & Guides
How to do it: •
Learn about the contributions and talents of different people and organizations in the neighborhood
Determine a set of asset types to map
Locate assets spatially based on neighborhood tours, community direction, research, and data analysis
Begin with what’s missing
Begin with what you have
Your community is a client
Your community is a partner
Solve problems by removing people
Make progress by activating people’s gifts
Start with needs assessment
Start with asset inventory
West Garfield Park Asset Map West Garfield ParkGarfield Park Asset Map Proposed Focus Area
West End Ave
Proposed Focus Area Ward Boundary
or ~30% of all rfield Park, orth Lawndale
Ward Boundary Block Data
West Garfield Park Asset Map West Garfield Proposed Focus Area Park Asset Map Ward Boundary
Block Block Data
Vacant Top 5% Lot of blocks that account for ~30% of all shootings across East/West Garfield End Ave WestPark, Top 5% Humboldt of blocks that account for ~30% of all Austin, Park, and North Lawndale shootings across East/West Garfield Park, over the last 5 years Adams StAustin, Humboldt Park, and North Lawndale over the last 5 years West End Ave Transportation
Proposed Block Data Focus Area
Block Vacant Lot
Block Ward Boundary
CTA Lines & Stations Transportation
Jackson Blvd Jackson Blvd
CTA Lines & Stations Existing Assets Parks Bus Stops Schools Existing Assets
Top 5% of blocks that account for ~30% of all Block Parks shootings across East/West Garfield Park, Austin, Humboldt Park, and North Lawndale Vacant Lot Schools over the last 5 years
Top 5% of blocks that account for ~30%Government of all Organization
Transportation shootings across East/West Garfield Park,
Austin, Humboldt Park, and North Lawndale Non-profit Organization CTA Lines & Stations over the last 5 years Government Affordable & Organization Social Housing Bus Stops
Transportation Existing Assets CTA Lines & Stations
Block Ward Boundary Vacant Lot
Block Data Focus Area Proposed
Proposed Focus Area
West Garfield Park Ward Boundary Asset Map
West Garfield Park Asset Map
CTA Lines Bus Stops & Stations
Block Buren St Top 5% of blocks that account for ~30% ofVanall Bus Stops shootings across East/West Garfield Park,Existing Assets Vacant Lot Austin, Humboldt Park, and North Lawndale Parks Existing Assets over the last 5 years Top 5% of blocks that account for ~30% of all Schools Parks shootings across East/West Garfield Park, Transportation Austin, Humboldt Park, and North Lawndale Schools WARD 28 CTA & Stations West End Ave over Lines the last 5 years WARD 24 Keeler Ave
W Van Buren St
Non-profit Grocery Organization
West End Ave
Government Organization Non-profit Organization
Non-profit & Organization Affordable Social Housing
Monroe St Wilcox St
Affordable Grocery & Social Housing Grocery on Blvd Washingt Faith-based Organization
Wilcox St Adams St
Faith-based Commercial Organization Adams St
Commercial Jackson Blvd Planned Investments & Improvements Madison St St Monroe Street
Resurfacing Goldin Institute Planned Investments & Improvements
Design opportunities exist in the common threads between community aspirations and City capacity. By analyzing the research and engagement findings and mapping out the alignments and gaps, the team can begin to identify a few key areas to focus design efforts for neighborhood safety. From conversations with City departments and community stakeholders, the team identified the following key connections: • Legler Library offers activities, services, and programs that residents have expressed a desire for, but many are not aware that the library is open and have not felt safe going there in the past • Melody School has a new play yard with outdoor spaces and youth activities, but it has remained closed to the public due to safety concerns • Madison and Pulaski have a high concentration of city-owned vacant lots, providing an opportunity to reinvest in these historic streets with community spaces, housing, and more Community Aspirations
The “policy wheel” is a graphic expression of the broad range of issue types under consideration
Strategies & Guides
How to do it: •
Document findings from community engagement and City coordination
Sort findings into categorized issues according to the policy wheel
Draw connections between City capacity and community aspirations
Map out concentrated programs and investments in space to identify what else is possible
Transform a vacant lot into a Community Plaza 3
4008 W Madison
Improve the connective spaces in the streetscapes around Melody and Legler Make the library grounds more welcoming
Drawing connections between community aspirations and City capacity helped the team identify areas that are currently unsafe, but have the potential to address the root causes of violence. By concentrating and overlapping existing programs and investments that build upon assets in these areas, Neighborhood Activation can have a visible, compound benefit on neighborhood safety and opportunity for residents. Goldin Institute
Design Session Orchestration
Design Sessions served as an invaluable forum for gathering and elevating community aspirations throughout the design process. By drawing ideas in real time, the Neighborhood Activation team was able to illustrate community-led ambitions for investment and directly confirm design intent with participants. When people volunteer their time to share insights with the team, it is important to demonstrate that they are being heard and that their ideas will drive design. The pilot team often heard that community members are experiencing “engagement fatigue,” meaning that they’re tired of spending significant time sharing ideas only to see nothing done, or to be presented with renderings and plans that do not reflect their aspirations. In response, the team developed a blank canvas for drawing ideas together with community members in a series of design sessions.
Blank template to support facilitation 54
Strategies & Guides
During the pilot program, the Neighborhood Activation team hosted 5 design sessions with approximately 10 to 20 attendees per event, resulting in 27 community-led design sketches for the blocks surrounding Madison and Pulaski. The sketches include ideas for streetscapes, vacant lots, and the Legler Library front lawn. Rather than risk misrepresenting ideas by producing separate renderings, the team shared the community’s sketches and notes directly with City agencies and funders to shape investments for these areas.
How to do it: 1. Partner with Community Groups
Partner with community groups who are interested in cohosting a session. Discuss their vision for the session, who they would like to engage, and how to bring these voices to the table. Develop a loose structure based on partner aspirations.
2. Define Roles
Define roles for the session ahead of time, including a primary host and at least one facilitator, illustrator, and note taker per breakout group.
3. Determine Design Areas
Community ideas for Legler Library front lawn
Determine 1-3 areas in the neighborhood to develop ideas for during the design session. Determine if the conversation should focus on short-, medium-, and/or long-term ideas for these spaces, or if it should be more open-ended.
4. Develop a Blank Canvas
Develop a blank canvas for each of the design areas, including photos from various angles and blank linework. Leave plenty of space for drawing ideas and taking notes. Include precedent images of what’s possible to spark ideas without pre-designing. Develop an accompanying printable package for anyone who would like to sketch ideas on their own.
5. Plan, Announce, and Promote
Select a date, time, and target audience. Promote the event through community partners, estimate how many people will attend, and plan for breakout groups accordingly. Aim for 6-10 people per breakout group to best facilitate discussion. Assign facilitator, note taker, and illustrator roles for each.
Community ideas for streetscape improvements
6. Facilitate, Listen, and Draw
During the session, guide the discussion with open-ended questions rather than leading ones that indicate design intent. Draw physical ideas, and record intangible ones with notes.
7. Document and Reflect
Following the session, gather co-hosts to debrief. What were the key takeaways from each breakout group? How can they best be conveyed to City agencies and funders to advocate for resources and investments?
Community ideas for transforming a vacant lot Goldin Institute
Youth Design Leadership Program Development Youth Design Leadership for Community Safety is a program focused on empowering local youth to participate in the Neighborhood Activation planning and design process by establishing a foundation for communicating, advocating, and making an impact through design. Authentic and meaningful community engagement is a prerequisite for design interventions that are credible and effective in reducing violence and promoting safety. The team’s strategy was aimed not only at engaging a spectrum of community voices, but also at transferring design knowledge and skills throughout the process. With philanthropic support from the Polk Bros. Foundation, the Neighborhood Activation team launched a 6-month Youth Design Leadership Program for Community Safety (YDL) for a cohort of 12 Garfield Park teens with an interest in architecture, design, and urban planning. The curriculum in Garfield Park was led by the Chicago Mobile Makers (CMM) and developed in partnership with the NA team. The goal of the Youth Design Leadership program is to introduce young participants to the fundamentals of design and an exploration of community safety by combining hands-on educational workshops, participation in community conversations as investigators, and immersive practical experience gained by working alongside the NA team. By enabling these young designers to learn valuable skills and influence the designs of projects to be presented to City Hall and community stakeholders, the program aims to empower youth as design partners who can “learn by doing” with professionals in the field. Ultimately, the Youth Design Leaders will design and build a project for the neighborhood, culminating in a presentation of their work to City officials and community members. 56
Strategies & Guides
Youth Design Leaders using collage to illustrate their ideas of a healthy community
How to do it: 1. Secure funding
Engage with philanthropic entities to cover a range of potential costs associated with the YDL cohort, including: • Design, facilitation, and hosting of a curriculum that will unfold over 6 months • Materials, supplies, and design kit production • Prototyping materials and supplies for class project to be built and exhibited at community meetings • Documentation and Audio-Visual support (optional) • Stipends for youth participants and community partners (optional) • Materials and hosting for youth-led community presentations of final designs (optional)
5. Host workshops
Guide the students through the process of neighborhood and site analysis, concept development, schematic design, and construction of a small-scale project. Explore a variety of design tools, including collage, model making, mapping, and sketching. Have the participants present their work for feedback from stakeholders.
6. Put Skills into Practice
Youth designers build something of value for a place. Youth designers share their ideas and work in a culminating event.
2. Develop a plan for the program
Set a start date and program duration. The pilot ran for six months. Develop a weekly work plan, including course objectives, required materials, site visits, guest lectures, presentations of YDL design work, and more. Tie activities and speakers to the overall process so young people can meaningfully impact the focus and outcomes of community planning.
3. Recruit participants
Develop a flyer that includes a program description, important dates, and a link to the application. The application should include basic questions about relationships to the neighborhood and interest in the program. Leverage existing relationships with community based organizations and partners to advertise the program among their constituents.
4. Select applicants
Biweekly workshops were held at the Legler Library computer lab.
Prioritize applicants who have strong ties to the neighborhood and have demonstrated an interest in learning about design.
All images courtesy of Chicago Mobile Makers Goldin Institute
Above: Mayor Lightfoot on Madison Street in West Garfield Park. Community leaders and City department representatives walked with the Mayor to discuss visible progress on short-term Neighborhood Activation investments and ongoing work needed for medium- and longterm investments. At left: An ongoing coordinated safety strategy at the Community Plaza on Madison. Street outreach workers and community volunteers providing security for the June 2021 groundbreaking of the Community Plaza at 4008 W Madison.
Next Steps Although there has been significant coordinated investment and a series of activations in West Garfield Park in a short amount of time, there is much more that needs to be done to achieve long-term changes in neighborhood safety. This section outlines the future steps needed to continue the work in West Garfield Park and offers recommendations on how Neighborhood Activation can evolve for future initiatives in other neighborhoods.
1. Ongoing Work 2. Reflections
Ongoing Work Though it’s important to gain momentum by making visible change happen on the ground quickly, ongoing work is required to ensure that short-term investments are nested in a longer-term vision for neighborhood safety in West Garfield Park. Engagement The first step in continuing the pilot work is to bring more people into the conversation. The team has made significant progress on engaging community residents, businesses, leaders, and other stakeholders, but more needs to be done to bring more people and their insights and talents into the process, to ensure the work is informed by those with the most expertise and most at stake. Expanded Services & Programs Neighborhood safety involves a wide variety of issues, many of which cannot be addressed by changes to the built environment alone. Physical investments must be accompanied by ongoing programmatic and service investments, including overdose prevention, victim services, fresh food distribution, and more. Public Safety/Security Coordination In addition to physical, programmatic, and direct service investments, Neighborhood Activation involves weekly coordination among City departments, including the Chicago Police Department, street outreach workers, community organizers, and designers to promote the implementation of community-led public safety strategies. Capacity Building A key step in continuing the initiative is to support community leaders in establishing governance and work plans to move forward. This requires an investment in civic engagement consulting services to support public-private collaboration, among other efforts.
Major Development Projects Short-term investments like the Community Plaza on Madison can generate energy around transforming a community, but to sustain that momentum and demonstrate a commitment to change, future work must include longterm development projects requested by the community, such as a bank, grocery store, housing, and other necessary amenities. Fundraising To follow through on the work and maintain momentum, it is critical to secure funding to support communtiy-led initiatives and aspirations. Funding is also required to support a local design partner and impact evaluation. Additionally, the 2022 City budget must allocate funds to build upon the work done at Legler Library and the Community Plaza. Impact Assessment To demonstrate the efficacy of the work, a research partner must be brought on to set a baseline and document progress over time. These assessments will inform how the work continues to evolve. Focus Area Expansion In addition to expanding the investments and the network of people involved, to truly move the needle on neighborhood safety, the Neighborhood Activation focus area must expand beyond the 8 blocks surrounding Legler Library and Melody School. In the medium-term, the scope may include rings of surrounding blocks within West Garfield Park, with safe spaces linked together over time.
Medium-Term Investments will build on short-term physical, programmatic, and direct service investments within the 8-block focus area of West Garfield Park. Long-Term Investments will begin to expand outside of the initial focus area to include rings of surrounding blocks within West Garfield Park.
Reflections By leveraging a whole-of-government approach in support of communitydirected strategies designed by those closest to the issue, Neighborhood Activation offers a powerful approach to achieving the goals of Our City, Our Safety. With significant early successes and a clear road map for future investments in Garfield Park, this strategy can also serve as a model for expanding the program to other neighborhoods across the city that urgently need a new approach for reversing decades of disinvestment. A plan for replicability is outside the scope of this report, but through the pilot work, the team has identified a series of roles and responsibilities that must be fulfilled for Neighborhood Activation to be successful elsewhere. Based on the successes and challenges in Garfield Park, we offer some recommendations on how the process can evolve and improve as we move forward toward a more safe and peaceful city: A. Blended Leadership B. Managing Expectations C. Connecting the Dots D. Investing Wisely E. Remove Barriers to Activation F. Build on What Works
Expand the circle of neighbors invested in Neighborhood Activation and remove barriers to ensure that everyone is invited, welcomed, heard, and valued.
When conflicts arise between competing visions or tensions arise between members or groups, help the group acknowledge trade offs, uphold ground rules, and embody our shared principles.
Promote and manage the investment from civic and philanthropic partners that can help bring community-driven projects and programs to life.
Support community residents who want to take responsibility for designing and implementing projects or programs based on areas of shared concern.
At the project level, stewardship involves being responsible for managing and maintaining projects. At the Neighborhood Activation level, collective ownership is based on shared principles and a collective vision.
Assist the facilitation and project-specific teams with scheduling and logistics and keep everyone informed and up to date.
Roles & Responsibilities. Neighborhood Activation relies on a network of people working together to increase neighborhood safety through design and investment rooted in a shared set of core principles. To achieve the goals of this work, two things need to be happening at the same time and both are critical to the long-term success: one part is focused on trust and relationship building, and the other is focused on agreement to get things done. Goldin Institute
A. Blended Leadership In Neighborhood Activation, leadership can come from anywhere and we need to actively remove barriers so that everyone can contribute. With resident voices at the center, we need a wide range of leaders who can help build trust, invite participation, facilitate conversations, design solutions and make real and durable progress towards a broadly shared vision. It is especially helpful to have expert facilitators, whose only agenda is to support those with ideas and proposals to learn and work together in a spirit of collaboration and shared stewardship. B. Managing Expectations In Neighborhood Activation, clarity around timeframes is critical. Community engagement is an ongoing commitment, and the work of building trust and a shared vision doesn’t follow any predetermined time frame. Without the longer-term horizon, pressure to deliver immediate results can lead to tension when the desire to make change quickly can be at odds with the work of building trust and a broadly shared vision. At the same time, it is helpful to have phases that can lead to early successes that in turn spark the imagination of what more is possible and activate new residents who are inspired by the visible progress to get involved. By making clear that Neighborhood Activation is a long-term commitment to a community, residents can expand and connect short term projects and programs and build momentum. C. Connecting the Dots In Neighborhood Activation, we know that each neighborhood is unique but the challenges are shared. If handled poorly, local projects can simply push problems to new blocks or devolve into fights for limited resources, and outsiders who lack trust can make the situation worse. At its best, local residents and City officials have unique roles to play as conveners, and with careful planning and clear roles they can blend community-level knowledge with a comprehensive city-wide strategy to connect and extend hyper-local approaches. To effect long-term change, violence reduction work in the City of Chicago must operate across all of these scales simultaneously because violence and quality of life issues are not bound by administrative borders and structural challenges are interconnected.
D. Investing Wisely In West Garfield Park, we know that decades of disinvestment and civic negligence has to be met with visible, sustained and strategic investments in people, programs and places. One secondary effect of the historic scarcity of resources is that investments need to be made wisely and transparently to avoid deepening divisions between groups competing for support, deepening the power imbalances of “gatekeepers” to resources and the risk of gentrification that can push out residents. To counteract these challenges, public and private investments that build local capacity and preference collaboration are critical to making durable progress. E. Remove Barriers to Activation In the City of Chicago, we know that vacant lots are simultaneously a reflection of disinvestment and a potential opportunity for investment and activation. Today, the many hurdles to activation, from determining ownership to legal environmental requirements, make vacant lot activation a nearly insurmountable task. Given the prevalence of vacant lots in neighborhoods experiencing high rates of violence, we recommend that the Vacant Lot Task Force be reimagined in ways that blend a both an urgent hyperlocal problem solving approach in the short term with a “systemic” policy approach for the long term that can collectively mitigate the legal, environmental and public policy barriers to vacant lot activation. F. Build on What Works In Neighborhood Activation, it’s always a good strategy to build on what’s already working. One strategy for expanding Neighborhood Activation is to borrow from the model of My Chi My Future and its unique framework for inviting and encouraging local organizations to access a shared set of resources towards a common vision of the future. As Neighborhood Activation spreads as a model, the City of Chicago can play a critical role in providing a democratic and open space for local leaders to come together, collaborate and participate in citywide and community-wide discussions and programs. Complementing the role of the City as a convener, we also recommended working with philanthropic leaders to support capacity building for communities and create pooled funds for Neighborhood Activation projects to incentivize collaboration between local organizations and inspire co-design and consensus building.
Mayor Lightfoot speaks at the 2021 groundbreaking of the Community Plaza at 4008 W Madison
Members of the Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative offering prayers and sharing plans for the future of West Garfield Park and the Community Plaza on Madison Ongoing fresh food distribution in the Legler Library parking lot
Appendix 1. Findings from Community Engagement 2. Findings from City Coordination 3. Findings from Research & Analysis 4. Bibliography 5. Acknowledgments
Community Reflections Root Causes of Violence • Systemic racism • Historic disinvestment • Open air drug markets • Lack of access to economic opportunity • Lack of a sense of ownership Neighborhood assets • Block clubs • Churches • Historical architecture • Transportation • A rich history with ties to MLK Jr. Investments for a Healthier Community • Adequate and affordable housing • Clean and safe streets, with better lighting • Access to quality food (grocery stores) • Employment opportunities and job skills training • Mental and physical wellness education and care • Recreational spaces and activities • Community spaces and programs • Banks • Sports facilities (skating, basketball, pools) • Greenery, gardens, flowers, color, art Alternatives to the Informal Economy • Young people need a safe place to hang out and activities to keep them busy out of school hours • Residents of all ages need job and skills training with a pipeline of economic and employment opportunity to serve as alternatives to entering the drug trade Gentrification • There are fears of gentrification • It’s important to recognize legacy residents
Business Revitalization • The historic retail corridor on Madison St should be reinvested in and celebrated • There should be more investment in Blackowned businesses (business incubators) • Black history and neighborhood identity should be celebrated (landmarks, buildings, & people) • The neighborhood needs new businesses, beautification of existing business storefronts, safe public community spaces, public art, and improved bicycle and pedestrian experiences (bike lanes & tree planting) Conflict Resolution • There should be alternative mediation methods to calling the police - a way to bridge the gap between policing and community conflict resolution • There should be places to settle disputes Legler Library • Many do not feel safe going to Legler Library and are not aware of the programs there Vacant Lots • Community members need a sense of ownership and should be involved in vacant lot cleaning, murals, and other investments • The number of vacant, boarded up or dilapidated sites needs to be reduced • Vacant lots should be cleaned • Vacant lots should be transformed into community spaces, recreational areas, and housing Direct Services • There should be more mental health facilities and support • The homeless need additional support
outreach: building strong relationships with those at highest risk of becoming involved in violence
flip worker: paid position for those involved in the informal economy to maintain peace during a set number of hours
aging out: when those involved in violence naturally leave it due to causes such as incarceration or death
conflict mediation: defusing & deescalating conflicts by supporting those in crisis
case management: providing individuals with resources and services to stay safe, including positive behavioral supports, mentoring and counseling, house referrals, job training, etc.
READI: a program that provides employment in paid transitional jobs, cognitive behavioral therapy, and support services to help participants create a viable path out of violence
The Violence Reduction Pipeline is an illustration of the team’s understanding of the violence reduction process at each stage of involvement based on conversations with street outreach workers from the Institute for Nonviolence.
Findings from City Coordination Legler Library • Legler Library suffered declining circulation in the past due to safety concerns, and has not seen much traffic since recently reopening following a year-long renovation • Enhanced offerings at Legler Library include an artist in residence program, YOUMedia recording studio for teens, makerspace, on-site social worker, computer and internet access, and programming for all ages Melody School • Melody School has a new Space to Grow play yard, but has been unable to open it to the public due to safety concerns Streetscape Improvements • CDOT can implement pedestrian improvements, such as refuge islands, raised crosswalks, and painted bump-outs • CDOT can coordinate tree planting, improve lighting, and implement places for people in the right-of-way in collaboration with Better Block and Kaboom • DCASE can design and install banners to advertise existing programs/assets and can solicit local artists to do murals celebrating neighborhood identity and history Housing • DOH has done an anti-gentrification plan for other neighborhoods, and can do one for West Garfield Park • DOH can advertise homeownership preparation programs • DPD has conducted a housing study for East Garfield Park, and can expand the study to West Garfield Park
Youth Activities • Park District offers youth programming in Garfield Park, and can offer programming in other locations throughout the neighborhood as well (boxing, gymnastics, basketball, etc) • My Chi My Future can connect Garfield Park youth to engaging out-of-school activities through a customized online platform Employment Opportunities • Park District hires seasonally to assist with programming, and can focus outreach for job programs for Garfield Park residents • Greencorps can hire Garfield Park residents to clean and beautify city-owned vacant lots • Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership can coordinate job opportunities and outreach in Garfield Park Direct Services • CDPH can expand overdose prevention, mental health services, street outreach, and victim services • CDPH has funding for neighborhood level projects that build social connection and efficacy and promote healing • DFSS can increase homelessness outreach • CPD can participate in safety coordination meetings with street outreach and other service provisions • CPS can increase frequency of Safe Passage around Melody School and Madison/Pulaski and coordinate with Park District to have Safe Passage ongoing throughout summer
At right: The team’s understanding of environmental remediation options for vacant lots based on cost. These diagrams were produced in an effort to remove barriers to vacant lot activation and support City initiatives and toolkits for cleaning, greening, and transforming them. 70
Findings from Research & Analysis Lasting Effects of Displacement Construction of the Congress (Eisenhower) Expressway in the 1950s displaced residents and drove out businesses from East and West Garfield Park. White Flight & Population Decline Following the construction of the Expressway, whites moved out of the neighborhood, while African Americans, crowded out of the south and near west sides, moved in. The relative lack of density and a declining population make activation difficult. Lasting Effects of Disinvestment Following the 1968 Riots sparked by the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr, more businesses left, burned buildings were not replaced, and people and money flowed out of the area. Zoning Revitalization Potential The zoning map reveals an urban form that is very much intact in West Garfield Park, with commercial corridors along Madison and Pulaski surrounded primarily by residential zones. In East Garfield Park, however, a number of planned residential and institutional developments have disrupted the commercial zones along Madison and 5th Ave, making it nearly impossible to restore the corridors to their historic retail uses.
Cost Effectiveness of Neighborhood Investment Neighborhood improvements have a lower average financial cost than the gun-related crime they help prevent (Cooke et al. 2018) The Value of Social Connectedness Social connectedness has been associated with improved public safety, including significant decreases in murder, rape, robbery, and assault (Stuart and Taylor) Evidence for Green & Improved Streets Tree cover and street-level improvements can reduce gun violence and the likelihood of gun assault (Cooke et al. 2018) Evidence for Vacant Property Improvements Improvements to abandoned buildings and vacant lots can reduce the frequency of gun assault (Cooke et al. 2018) Abandoned and disheveled buildings may signal to the community that illegal activities and violence can proceed unseen and unmonitored (Cui and Walsh 2015) Every dollar spent on cleaning and greening interventions may return hundreds of dollars in public safety benefits (Branas et al. 2016)
Madison & Pulaski District, 1930s (Left) -In the early 1900s, Madison St took its place as the district’s commercial heart of Garfield Park. Congress/Eisenhower Expressway, 1950s (Right) Construction of the Congress/Eisenhower Expressway in the 1950s displaced residents and drove out businesses from the neighborhood.
100K 90K 80K 70K 60K 50K 40K 30K 20K 10K 1880
Garfield Park, Late 1960s (Above) Following the 1968 Riots sparked by the assassination of MLK Jr, more businesses left, burned buildings were not replaced, and people and money flowed out of the area.
Year Total Population
Non-White Population White Population
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Acknowledgments City of Chicago Project Team
Lori Lightfoot Mayor of Chicago
Jason Ervin 28th Ward Alderman
Project Team Susan Lee, Senior Advisor, Consultant Lisa Schneider Fabes, Project Manager, Consultant Margaret Decker, Policy Advisor, MOVR Melissa Stratton, Director of News Affairs, CPD Jamie Simone, Deputy Commissioner, CDOT Manuel Whitfield, Advance, MO Travis Moore-Murray, MO
Garfield Park Rite to Wellness Collaborative Working Group TJ Crawford, MAAFA Angela Taylor, GPCC + Tilton Park Advisory Council Tara Dabney, Institute for Nonviolence Chicago Rose Mabwa, The Community Builders LaShone Kelly, Garfield Park Community Council Mike Tomas, Garfield Park Community Council LaDarius Curtis, West Side United Sharif Walker, Bethel New Life James Webb, Nation Builders Construction
Studio Gang Project Team Jeanne Gang, Founding Principal and Partner Mark Schendel, Managing Principal and Partner William Emmick, Design Management Principal Alissa Anderson, Publications Director Abraham Bendheim, Senior Project Leader Perry Strong, Design Team Member Noora Aljabi, Design Team Member Julia Roberts, Design Team Member
Goldin Institute Project Team Travis Rejman, Founding Executive Director Burrell Poe, Director, Chicago Peace Fellows Jassi Sandhar, Global Research Fellow Yusuph Masanja, Alumni Coordinator Cree Noble, Team Coordinator
Chicago Mobile Makers Project Team Maya Bird-Murphy, Founder Stephen Cortez, Program Facilitator Zainab Wakil, Program Facilitator
Chicago Peace Fellows Frank Latin, West Side Media Project Damien Morris, Breakthrough Urban Ministries Maretta Brown Miller, 1400 & 1500 N. Long Block Club Pastor Phil Jackson, Firehouse Community Arts Center Annamaria Leon, Permaculture Chicago Teaching Institute Reshorna Fitzpatrick, Stone Temple MB Church Anthony Raggs, Alliance of Local Service Organizations
Community Ambassadors Precious Collins Jaliyah Johnson Jeff Kelly LaShone Kelly Jay Moore Youth Design Leaders Arielle Tyler Jaiden Cox Felicia Conley Lena Kelly Aarion Lee Asharee Hawkins Zuri Spencer Marquisse McCamury Aaniyah Barrios Dorien Brundage Interviewees and Participants Ayesha Jaco, West Side United Marshall Hatch Jr., MAAFA David Ansell, Rush Vauna Hernandez, Bethel New Life Donald Dew, Habilitative Systems, Inc. Jennifer Norsworthy, West Side United Kemena Brooks, The Community Builders Damien Howard, Together Chicago Martin Coffer, Breakthrough Urban Ministries Anton Seals, Grow Greater Englewood Lauren Akinlawon, Reborn Urban Ministries Bradly Johnson, BUILD, Inc. Meghan Harte, LISC Karl Brinson, West Side NAACP Jamie Thompson, Reborn Community Church Teny Gross, Institute for Nonviolence Bryant Robertson, Institute for Nonviolence Sam Castro, Institute for Nonviolence
Fred Seaton, Institute for Nonviolence Siri Hibbler, GP Chamber of Commerce Samuel Sanders, GP Chamber of Commerce Antonio LaGrier, GP Chamber of Commerce Timmie Freeman, GP Chamber of Commerce Paradise Simmons, GP Chamber of Commerce Frank Brim, The BASE Chicago Rather Stanton, Legal Prep Charter School Tiffany Tillman, Melody Elementary School Darlene Sandifer, Westside Music Center Howard Sandifer, Westside Music Center
City Collaborators Gia Biagi, CDOT Anne Sheahan, MO Maurice Classen, MO Samir Mayekar, MO Sybil Madison, MO Heidi Zeiger, Photographer, MO Norman Kerr, MOVR Mariah VanErmen, MOVR Lubica Benak, CDOT David Smith, CDOT Elizabeth Tomlins, Park District Alonzo Williams, Park District Sarah White, Park District Alejandro Valverde, Park District Matthew Richards, CDPH Marlita White, CDPH Rachel Arfa, MOPD Joe Albritton, MOPD Cole Stallard, DSS Debbie Delopez, DSS Mary Ellen Messner, CPL Maggie Clemons, CPL Jason Driver, CPL Shilo Jefferson, CPL Derrick Davis, CPD Amrit Mehra, MO Ivan Capitali, BACP Rosa Escareno, BACP Kenya Merritt, BACP Matthew Allee, BACP Erin Harkey, DCASE Lisa Laws, DCASE Nina Melendez, DCASE Manuel Perez, IGA Jerel Dawson, IGA Martina Hone, MO Haleigh Hoskins, MO John Van Slyke, MO Ernesst Cato III, CPD Patrina Wines, CPD
Darrell Spencer, CPD Daniel Allen, CPD Jermaine Harris, CPD Patrick Mackenzie, CPD Gerardo Garcia, DPD Ernest Bellamy, DPD Ethan Lassiter, DPD James Harbin, DPD Lisa Morrison Butler, DFSS Brandie Knazze, DFSS Lisa Hampton, DFSS Angela Rudolph, DFSS Sendy Soto, DOH Aaron Johnson, DOH Sean Wiedel, Greencorps Andrew Johnson, Greencorps Karin Norington-Reaves, CCWP Cory Muldoon, CCWP Julie Burnett, MO Jadine Chou, CPS Kimberly Worthington, AIS Paul Waite, AIS Sarah Rubin, AIS Drew Hines, Greencorps Jennifer Johnson Washington, DCASE
Research Collaborators Will Snyder, Metopio Jonathan Giuffrida, Metopio Roseanna Ander, University of Chicago Crime Lab Zach Honoroff, University of Chicago Crime Lab Kimberley Smith, University of Chicago Crime Lab John Wolf, University of Chicago Crime Lab Sage Kim, University of Illinois at Chicago Andy Papachristos, Northwestern University Soledad McGrath, Northwestern University
Philanthropic Partners Crown Family Foundation Polk Bros. Foundation Pritzker Pucker Family Foundation Robert R. McCormick Foundation