On February 1 ten volunteer researchers braved the blankets of snow falling on Chicago to gather at the CivicLab to launch the next phase our our Civic Illumination work. We are now looking at the New Market Tax Credit Program and hedge fund activities in Chicago. This six minute video introduces the work and the reason for undertaking it. To get more details or to volunteer, contact Tom Tresser at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chicago Teachers For Social Justice and the CivicLab are collaborating for a six-week session where people come together to examine an issue in order to act. It’s called “Inquiry To Action” and the inquiry we are hosting at the Lab starts on February 25, 2014. We will meet from 6:30pm to 8:30pm on six Tuesdays through April 1.
Chicago is said to be the city of Big Plans. But WHO made those plans and who benefits from them? Many big-ticket projects have been proposed by City Hall over the years in order to make Chicago a “world-class city.” But what, exactly, is a world-class city? This study group will review the history of community planning in Chicago, starting with the 1909 Burnham Plan and will investigate key players in the city’s planning history in the present era. Who are they and what, exactly, are they planning for us? We will seek to understand the context and motivations and outcomes for these plans. We will look at the Right To The City movement and other frame-challenging planning movements to see what other sorts of visions can be surfaced for the future of our great city.
There is a Kickoff Event on Saturday February 15 6-8pm and a Finale Event on Saturday April 5 6-8pm. There is no charge to participate. Attendance at all sessions is encouraged. YOU MUST REGISTER HERE.
Historian and reporter for The Nation Rick Perlstein is doing a series of articles on the perils of privatization. In this 13 minute interview on WBEZ he lays out the reasons to be very skeptical about the sorts of deals Chicago is “forcing down the throats” of the taxpayers. He gives a shout out to the work of Tom Tresser and the CivicLab.