Photo: Paul Krueger via Flickr Creative Commons

CNT and the Army Corps Collaborate on High-Tech Flooding Alert System

What if you could predict where flooding would happen next in your community or get a text alert when basements in your neighborhood are flooding? Often, when flooding occurs, there’s little warning beyond weather forecasts about the presence of flash flooding.  The Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) and the Army Corps of Engineers are working together on a new initiative called RainReadySM Alert, a predictive flood monitoring and alert system based on aggregated data from sump... Continue reading »


Why a Focus on Congestion is Flawed

A recent Texas A&M study on traffic congestion misses the point. According to the report's findings, Chicago-area commuters lose 61 hours every year due to delays costing $1,445 annually for wasted fuel and time.  Yet we should be able to live in convenient places closer to our jobs and amenities, rather than always expect a road will take us there without delay.  Sixty-one hours a year boils down to 7.3 minutes of delay per trip. Two-thirds of area commuters get to work in... Continue reading »


CNT Receives EPA Grant to Address Environmental and Public Health Issues Related to Urban Flooding

The RainReady℠ program, an initiative of the Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT), has received a $30,000 EPA Environmental Justice Award. The grant will be used to support CNT’s work helping homeowners reduce sewer backups and flooding in Chatham, a neighborhood on Chicago’s South Side. The work is being done in partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  “We’re very grateful to the EPA. This comes at a critical time as cities like Chicago brace for more frequent and severe... Continue reading »


Plugging Leaky Water Infrastructure With A Holistic 'One Water' Approach

Every urban community and neighborhood around the world served by a centralized water supply system is plagued by the same problem: Aging water infrastructure that slowly leaks and loses trillions of gallons of water every year. The looming capital investment necessary to repair and upgrade aging water infrastructure will put a severe financial strain on utilities and local governments that are already having trouble avoiding red ink. This, along with the impending impact of climate change,... Continue reading »


Ranked Among Worst Cities for Drivers, Chicago Needs More Transit Now

A recent article in the Chicago Tribune’s Red Eye, a publication geared toward young commuters, reported on a study from personal finance site WalletHub that called Chicago one of the worst cities for drivers. After noting the many obstacles Chicagoland drivers face, including congestion, city fees, and volatile weather, the article delivers the somewhat bleak conclusion that at least “some of us can avoid it by riding the CTA or a bike.” It’s clear from this article that car ownership comes... Continue reading »


Cook County Making Progress on Region's Transit Future

The Cook County Board took an important first step in funding transit when it recently approved a one percent sales tax increase recently to shore up a growing pension deficit. This will bring to an end a longtime misallocation of motor fuel tax dollars in order to fund public transit and aging infrastructure.   The Center for Neighborhood Technology and our partners at the Active Transportation Alliance, leaders of the Transit Future campaign, met with Board President Toni... Continue reading »


Cook County Should Shore Up Past Debts to Focus on Our Transit’s Future

It’s no secret that Cook County’s finances are seriously challenged. As the region debates solutions, now is a time for our leaders to make a bold statement and seize a great opportunity to invest in the Chicago region’s future while addressing the problems of the past.  Right now, as you are reading this, Cook County Commissioners are struggling mightily with a proposal for a one percent sales tax increase that would primarily fund pensions, but it would also open the door for other... Continue reading »


Pioneering Community Solutions to Build a RainReady Nation

 “People do not realize that this block, which becomes the dumping ground of rain runoff from other communities, experiences mini Katrinas yearly.”—Midlothian resident The Chicagoland community of Midlothian is no stranger to flooding. Located at the convergence of three watersheds, it has seen its absorbent open spaces paved over by a century of suburban development. At this point, even light to moderate rainstorms can cause overbanking from the creeks and the stormwater conveyance... Continue reading »


Furthering Fair Housing Through Equitable Transit-Oriented Development

New HUD Rules Emphasize Fair Housing and Better Access to Transit and Jobs   At a press conference in Chicago today, HUD Secretary Julian Castro announced new rules nationwide aimed to help cities build inclusive communities near transit and jobs, with good schools and a high quality of life. Those rules, titled Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH), ask communities receiving HUD funding to demonstrate how they are using their investments to proactively create communities... Continue reading »


Now is the Time to Fund Cook County’s Transit Future

The past few weeks have proven to be a pivotal few for the Transit Future campaign and, indeed, for the future of transit in Cook County.  On the evening of June 18th, Congressman Mike Quigley joined us in Chicago to show his support for transit expansion, addressing a room full of elected officials, business leaders, and other Transit Future supporters.  Quigley, who serves on the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies appropriation committee, shared... Continue reading »