Advancing Chicago’s Walkable Network

GOAL THIS SEMESTER:

Analyze the walkability and popularity of areas in the Chicago Network and make changes to existing topologies and infrastructure to make less walkable areas become more walkable and advance walkability in the existing walkable neighborhoods.

WHERE WE LEFT OFF LAST SEMESTER:

Walkable Networks

HOW WE CAN USE WHAT WE’VE DONE FOR THIS SEMESTER:

We can use the data from last semester to determine both what areas are very walkable & popular and which areas are not popular and do not invite walking. This data can include sidewalk size, crime data, business license data, and even some API data to help find popularity. We can also integrate more layers into our system as we see fit.

Once we have determined the level of walkability for areas of the city. We can determine what changes need to occur in this area to promote walkability and social interaction, by determining what businesses may be missing, if more sidewalk space is needed, if more green space is needed, etc.

After determining these changes we can import it into our network and see if and how it can advance existing walkability in that area.

WHAT WE HAVE LOOKED AT SO FAR:

Business LicensesOtherLicenseRoutes

 

UML Diagram

UML Diagram

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Vacant Properties and Abandoned Foreclosures in Chicago

Vacant Properties September 2010

The map referenced is from the Woodstock Institute. They are doing research on property foreclosures in Chicago. It illustrates the amount of vacant properties in blue and red flag properties in red. “Red flag” refers to vacant foreclosed properties that haven’t been sold or auctioned. These vacant properties present a safety challenge for people living in these neighborhoods. Buildings that are unoccupied support gang activity and squatters. With the closing of public schools, this presents a particular danger for children walking to school.

Boarded Homes

 

The QGIS map below represents the zoning boundaries in orange, TIF districts in green, purple dots are school locations, and blue lines are safe passage routes. Vacant properties present a safety concern for children going to schools. This is even more imminent with the recent public school closings. I am still retrieving the raw data on vacant buildings and “red flag” sites. According to a ABC Report, some of these vacant buildings are being torn down on the safe passage route to address these concerns, but things are moving at a slow pace through the courts and vacant buildings still remain on the safe passage routes. This is example of a larger issue within the city with abandoned and vacant buildings.

Analysis Map

Abandoned and vacant buildings are being reported through the city 311 service, this data is reported through the Chicago Data Portal.

311 reported vacant buildings

Articles:

http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/local&id=9211619

http://www.chicagonow.com/chicago-muckrakers/2011/01/abandoned-foreclosures-chicagos-lost-homes/