WPB project list gaining ground, picking up speed

“Create a pedestrian gateway at the Clybourn Metra station under the Kennedy Expressway”

We are getting into the nitty, gritty of developing real, working solutions for Wicker Park Bucktown. From furthering livability, to celebrating gateways (and addressing those dreary underpasses… watch out, pigeon!), to advancing the culture, innovation, and preservation of special places… the future of WPB is on the talking table. Where are you? Chime in on plan actions and ideas here. ***SCROLL DOWN TO TAKE AN UNDERPASS IMAGE POLL.***

  • “Protect the Flat Iron Building as a WPB art hub.”
  • “Offer services to small business and entrepreneurs to navigate city, state, and federal incentives.”
  • “Develop a WPB mobile app that integrates information, self guided tours, history lessons and architecture.”
  • “Create pedestrian gateway at Clybourn Metra station under Kennedy Expressway.”

These were just some of the projects ranked as “High Impact, High Feasibility” at Wednesday’s Advisory Committee meeting.  Hosted by Bru Chicago at 1562 N Milwaukee Ave, the WPB Master Plan meeting (the 3rd meeting thus far) got down to business… talking details.

The ultimate project gauge comes down to a question of WANT vs. CAN: what projects do we want to do and what projects can we do?

A matrix of community strategies (which were developed and fine-tuned at past meetings, workshops, and via online outreach) were distributed along with a specific set of proposed projects.  The strategies and projects centered on three primary topics… Arts and Culture, Transportation and Guide Development (i.e. business, housing, design guidelines).  Click to view the presentation!


The advisory group ranked each project by noting (1) how big of an impact they thought it would make… and (2) the reality part, how feasible it is to do.

Some meeting “quotables” include:

  • “We need to focus on LIVABILITY.”
  • “Love, love, love the idea of impacting gateways in a positive way.”
  • “Historic re-use of buildings is important, but we also need to focus on supporting great design of NEW construction.”
  • “Gateways, connectivity, safety = YES!”

The list of 50+ projects is currently being narrowed and refined based on feedback received.  Have something to add, subtract, multiply? Share your comments and photos here!

Mark Your Calendar! | Join us on August 3rd at 5:30pm at the Bucktown Wicker Park Library for the next Community Workshop where we will highlight these and so much more!

Question to ponder… and better yet, answer!

  1. Should the Cortland / Ashland underpass become an engaging canvas for the arts? What about festive lighting?

The Cortland / Ashland underpass in Wicker Park Bucktown serves as a major gateway into the neighborhood for a multitude of users — drivers, cyclists, pedestrians… and thousands of transit users daily via the Clybourn Metra Station and CTA buses. As part of the WPB Master Plan, we are exploring improving the underpass as a potential future project. What are your thoughts…How would you like to see this gateway node improved?

Share your preferences by giving each image below a STAR RATING! Have other ideas — scroll down to submit comments and upload photos showcasing ideas you’d like to see in WPB.


Concept 1: Creative lighting and accent art



Concept 2: Interesting murals by local artists



Concept 3: Interesting accent lighting paired with murals (palm trees not included)



Concept 4: Festive lighting



Concept 5: Existing Underpass (keep as-is)


Thanks for taking the time to share your perspective. Submit additional ideas and photos below!

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