LAMP Earns National Recognition; Moves Forward on Plan

By Stacy Jeziorowski | Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A rendering of proposed changes to Lincoln Ave. as part of the LAMP plan.

The Lakeview Chamber of Commerce, along with Special Services Area 27, recently earned two international nominations for the Lakeview Area Master Plan (LAMP).

The International Downtown Association received 63 submissions for the 2011 Downtown Achievement Awards, which recognize planning efforts that establish a strategic position for downtown with elements of the plan having already been approved, ratified or implemented.

“The Lakeview Area Master Plan is a shining example of excellent downtown management that delivers real results,” said David Downey, IDA president and CEO in a statement. “Each year the IDA Awards Jury recognizes organizations that utilize best practices in our industry.”

LAMP was also selected from 37 nominations to earn the 2011 American Planning Association Illinois Chapter award in the Community Outreach Category. The award will be presented during its annual conference in Evanston on October 6.

Executive Director of the Lakeview Chamber of Commerce Heather Way says she actually screamed when she heard about the nominations. “We are very proud of the plan and being recognized for the work in this manner exceeds our expectations. I think that the awards validate our work on the plan. Hopefully, we’ll be able to leverage recognition of this type to garner support for some of the larger projects.”

Recently the Chamber and SSA27 formed a non-profit 501(c)3, Friends of Lakeview, which will allow the organization to apply for grants specific to community development, an initiative discussed when LAMP was first revealed.

Also, in partnership with the SSA, Scooter’s Frozen Custard and the condo association of 1658 W. Belmont Ave., LAMP’s first beautification project has been completed. “It is a great model for future parkway beautification projects,” said Way.

Bike riders may have also noticed five new, unique bike racks installed in the Lincoln-Belmont-Ashland area as an effort to increase bike parking in the area that also double as public art. If you like them, there are five more in the works that the Chamber hopes to install by the end of the year.

In addition to the bike racks, the Chamber opened ART Lakeview 2011: A POP UP Art Experience, at 3361 N. Lincoln Ave. This is month-long art installation creates a strolling gallery experience, utilizes vacant market space and works to draw pedestrian activity to the corner.

The Chamber has also been in talks with representatives from the CTA and are making more detailed presentations to start work on phase one  of the LoLine, a pedestrian walkway under the El tracks that will connect the Southport and Paulina Brown Line stations.

A new farmers market is also in the works for the Southport L station, which will be less of a traditional market and more a food fair. Way hopes to host it on a weeknight to attract a younger demographic.

“We have other irons in the fire, but nothing that I can disclose at this time,” said Way.

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