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ORGANIZATIONS HONORED FOR ACHIEVEMENTS IN COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN

3/8/2017, noon | Updated on 3/8/2017, noon
“More than 1,500 community developers, architects, business leaders, neighborhood advocates and elected officials came together recently for the 23rd Annual ...
The 2017 CNDA second place winner of the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation was Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP for Chicago Public Library – Chinatown Branch.

ORGANIZATIONS HONORED FOR ACHIEVEMENTS IN COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN

By Christopher Shuttlesworth

“More than 1,500 community developers, architects, business leaders, neighborhood advocates and elected officials came together recently for the 23rd Annual Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards (CNDA) located at the McCormick Place (2301 S. Indiana Ave.). Nine organizations were honored for their achievements in community development and architectural design.

“The ceremony was organized by Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) Chicago, and was a rare occasion in which all of the contributors to neighborhood redevelopment – community organizers, real estate developers, architects, bankers, residents, foundation and corporate leaders, elected officials and others – were in the same room to recognize and celebrate Chicago’s top real estate development and architectural design projects in the

city’s neighborhoods,” according to a CNDA press release.

CNDA began its celebration with a panel discussion where, “the panelists discussed what design means in creating strong, sustainable neighborhoods,” which was moderated by WBEZ Radio Southside Reporter Natalie Moore, according to a CNDA press release.

The conversation focused on what communities look

like today and panelists’ thoughts going forward, as Executive Director of LISC Chicago Meghan Harte posed such questions as, “What would they suggest about being intentional of designs?

What would they suggest to policy makers and the individuals with resources on addressing some inequities in community design over several decades?”

Harte said CNDA’s theme for this year was, “Communities by Design.” The primary goal of the awards event was to show how designers, who work in low-to-moderate income neighborhoods, took on the existing layouts of the communities, its challenges, issues and opportunities and brought them to the next level.

“Communities are the essence of who we are whether that’s the higher Chicago community or the block that you live on or the community within your block,” Harte said.

“So, it’s important to really care about that because if you care about the people next to you, the block you live on, the neighborhood you live in or the city you call home, then that’s when it lifts everyone and whatever you define as community.”

Harte said CNDA recognizes when community development is done well and it shows the rest of the city that it can be done.

“During the ceremony CNDA presented six community

development awards, three Richard H. Driehaus Foundation

Awards for Architectural Excellence in Community Design and two awards for personal achievement to individuals.

The 2017 CNDA winner of the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation was Wheeler Kearns Architects for Lakeview Pantry,” according to a CNDA press release.

“Investing in communities is always a safe bet and not

everyone does it,” Harte said. “The more we can recognize the good work that people do and the positive outcomes that they achieve in their communities, it gives the opportunity for the next person, the next funder or the next architect to say if they can do it there, then I can do it in my community or do this project in someone else’s community.”