Transit-Oriented Development in the Chicago Region

    Transit-Oriented Development in the Chicago Region, 2000–2010


    Mixed-use centers anchored by public transit are essential to the triple bottom line, or the economic, environmental, and social sustainability of the Chicago Region. With the publication of GO TO 2040 in 2010, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) put forth a vision to grow the transit-oriented development (TOD) areas of the Region and make them communities of choice. In 2012 the Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) built on this vision with the publication of Prospering In Place, which honored GO TO 2040 for its commitment to reconnect land use, transportation, and the economy, and recommended the locations in the Chicago Region that had the best prospects for growth—and hence warranted priority access to public and private resources. Prospering in Place was also a cautionary story of how a blueprint alone, without a place-based framework for development, will not reverse the Region’s undesirable trend toward sprawl and disinvestment.


    This report builds on that story, melding those lessons learned with our new understanding of Regional trends to yield a set of recommendations to optimize the promise of Chicago’s historically magnetic transit zones.