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The Cermak / Blue Island Sustainable Streetscape Sustainable Streets for Chicagoland: Multi-Modal, Multi-Functional, and Totally Fabulous Richard M. Daley, Mayor City of Chicago Janet L. Attarian, AIA, LEED, Project Director Streetscape and Sustainable Design Program

Infrastructure and Cities • Infrastructure in Poor Condition

• Large Capital Projects with a Long Design Life

• Direct Effect on Behavior

• 50% Population Threshold


9% Transportation


Buildings and Other Energy Uses


Chicago Climate Action Plan: Adaptation and Mitigation

Source: CCAP

Sustainable Urban Design • City governments are at the forefront of sustainable design, and have an obligation to make cities livable places where people want to live, work and play. • Chicago Land Area = 144,593 ac Public Right-of-Way (23%)

• In addition, there are 839 acres of public park space and 53.4 miles of lake and river frontage.

Complete Streets Policy “The safety and convenience of all users of the transportation system including pedestrians, bicyclists, transit users, freight, and motor vehicle drivers shall be accommodated and balanced in all types of transportation and development projects and through all phases of a project so that even the most vulnerable – children, elderly, and persons with disabilities – can travel safely within the public right of way.” 

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Mayor’s Pedestrian Advisory Council Pedestrian Plan Mayor Daley’s Safe Routes Ambassadors Pedestrian Crash Analysis CMAQ School and Transit Station Improvement projects

How Complete is your Street? •Stormwater Management

•Energy Efficiency •Water Efficiency •Alternative Transportation •Recycling •Urban Heat Island •Education •Beauty and Community

•Site Selection •Air Quality

Green Alley Program • 1,900 miles of public alleyways in Chicago, the largest of any city in the world. • Total of 3,500 acres of impermeable surface, the equivalent area of over 5 Midway Airports.

Alley Summary Total: 13,000 Alleys

• 20% Currently Unimproved • 20% in Need of Repairs

Green Alley Program

Green Alley Program Development of Permeable Asphalt and Concrete: •Best Practices •Material Testing •Trial Batches •Recycled Content- Slag/GTR

The Ground Tire Rubber Solution: •Approx 600 tires recycled per alley •Solved cohesion problem

Green Alley Program – Installation Testing

Wider Implementation

Permeable Ward Yard

Permeable Parkways

Permeable Pocket Parks

Wider Implementation

WPA Street Reconstruction – Permeable Asphalt Parking Lanes

Incorporation into Standard Streetscape Designs

Devon Avenue Streetscape Construction May 2009

Maxwell Street Permeable Market Plaza

Maxwell Street Permeable Market Plaza

EPA Primary Research Questions •Runoff Volume and Rate •Surface Water Quality •Ground Water Quality •Freeze/Thaw Performance

Market Plaza: Preliminary Monitoring Results 1/16/09 (temp in degrees) Air: -7.0 Deep: 38.6 Middle: 34.1 Shallow: 33.4

Sept 2008- Feb 2009

Sustainable Streetscape Demonstration Project The Cermak / Blue Island Streetscape

Existing Conditions- Cermak Road

Existing Conditions- Blue Island Avenue

Stormwater Management • 100% diversion from the

combined sewer for a two year storm event 1. Pervious pavements 2. Bioswales in bump-outs 3. New planter and street tree designs 4. Bioswale Parkways

Energy Efficiency • 0% Light pollution into night sky • Improve energy performance above baseline streetscape 1. Utilize LED Pedestrian fixtures 2. White Light, Metal Halide Technology

3. Pavement Reflectance / Uniformity

Water Efficiency • Limit use of potable water for landscape irrigation 1. Recycle stormwater/roof water for irrigation of planters or water feature

Alternative Transportation • Design facilities for pedestrians and cyclists • Improve access to public transportation • Provide additional bike parking

Recycling • Recycle a minimum of 90% construction waste • Install total materials which contain a minimum 10% recycled content

Urban Heat Island Reduction • Increase pavement reflectance of both the roadway and sidewalk • Utilize Permeable pavements • Increase tree canopy cover

• Increase landscaped surfaces

Education •Partnerships with Benito Juarez High School for science and engineering curriculum •Education Seminar •Self-guided walking tour brochure •Informational kiosks/identifiers with interpretive graphics

Beauty and Community •Human Scale •Education •Significant elements of life through all major spaces of the project •Celebrate culture, history, spirit and place •Western Stormwater Plaza •Benito Juarez Water Feature

Site Selection •The Chicago Nature and Wildlife Plan •Reuse of existing roadway Acres









Ripirian/Water Edge








Naturalistic Planting


Potential Habitat

Air Quality •Construction Equipment Emissions •Biodiesel/ Ultra Low Sulfur Fuels •Anti-Idling Policies •Local Materials: Sourcing 40% of products within 500 Miles •Dust Control •Photocatalytic Cements

Source: OMP

Cermak/Blue Island Sustainable Streetscape

Cermak/Blue Island Sustainable Streetscape

Cermak/Blue Island Sustainable Streetscape

Synergies in Roadway Design •Energy Efficiency

•Energy Efficiency

•Waste Management

•Waste Management

•Air Quality

•Air Quality

•Site Selection

•Site Selection

•Beauty and Community

•Beauty and Community

•Urban Heat Island

•Urban Heat Island

•Water Management

•Water Management

•Water Efficiency

•Water Efficiency

Integrated Infrastructure Design Example: Permeable Pavers in Parking/Bike Lane High SRI for Lighting and UHI Photocatalytic for Air Quality

Stormwater Management

Bike/ Parking Lane

Integrated Infrastructure Design Example: Side Street Pedestrian Bump-Outs

•Reduced Pedestrian Crossing Distances •Opportunities for Landscaped beautification •Best management practice •Discourage truck access to residential blocks to the North

Integrated Infrastructure Design Example: Parkway Bioswale

•Stormwater Management •Pedestrian Buffer •Landscaped beautification •Urban Heat Island Reduction •Water quality

•Reduction in potable water use

Changing Business as Usual •Determining what city standards and requirements may be in conflict with sustainable design concepts •Working with city departments and sister agencies to approve construction drawings •Working with city departments and utilities to determine unique maintenance responsibilities •Outreach to the community in order to communicate unique infrastructure design and maintenance requirements

Monitoring •Making the case for sustainable design •Determining actual maintenance needs •Continuous learning and improvement •Critical link for turning pilots to programs Green Alleys: Permeability, Albedo, Surface Temperature, Strength

Maxwell Street Market Permeable Plaza: Partnership with EPA to measure suitability of stormwater BMPs on brownfield sites. Sustainable Streetscape: Monitoring Partnership with MWRD / Essroc

Local, National, and International Standards for Sustainable Infrastructure •LEED ND as a starting place •Sustainable Site Initiative •Green Streets “LEED for Roads” •Unique needs and potential of Infrastructure Need to be based on Industry Standards

New Markets and Material Development: Creating Innovation for the Environment •Lead by Example •Partner with the Private Sector •Connect to the Community •Design/Contractor/Owner Education “ is not about cutting back. It’s about creating a new cornucopia of abundance for the next generation by inventing a whole new industry. It’s about getting our best brains out of hedge funds and into innovations that will not only give us the clean-power industrial assets to preserve our American dream but also give us the technologies that billions of others need to realize their own dreams without destroying the planet.” –Thomas L. Friedman, The New York Times

Stimulating New Jobs with Green Infrastructure

For every 1.25 Billion spent‌ New Infrastructure

Infrastructure Rehabilitation

Green Infrastructure Source: FHWA Jobs Decoder

43,200 jobs

47,000 jobs

51,200 jobs

Ending Business as Usual:

Responsibility for the Biosphere

Janet L. Attarian, AIA LEED | Project Director | Streetscape and Sustainable Design Program | 312-744-5900

The Cermak/Blue Island Sustainable Streetscape  

The Cermak/Blue Island Sustainable Streetscape