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-   -   Urban biodiversity week, 7 cities celebrate. (http://www.wildlifegardeners.org/forum/biodiversity/11581-urban-biodiversity-week-7-cities-celebrate.html)

Gloria 05-02-2013 11:20 AM

Urban biodiversity week, 7 cities celebrate.
This link is very local to Chicago and north eastern Illinois. If you live near one of the other cities tell us what is happening near you.

Millennium Reserve : Urban Biodiversity Week


Please join us in celebrating Urban Biodiversity Week, May 13th to May 19th! This event is part of the National Urban Biodiversity Week, a seven-city collaboration to bring urban dwellers into contact with local flora and fauna. Urban Biodiversity Week will showcase events in the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core area. It will celebrate urban biodiversity and conservation activities and will provide opportunities for local residents and visitors to participate in outdoor activities in the Calumet region.

The week will culminate with a Nature Block Party at Eggers Woods and William Powers on May 18 – a family fun day that includes a garlic mustard pull, tree hike, bird hike, biking, fishing, archery, and nature-themed games and art projects.

NEWisc 05-02-2013 11:57 AM

It's really nice to see events like this taking place. And it's good to see that public organizations are sponsoring this kind of activity.

The event is co-organized by Illinois Department of Natural Resources and Forest Preserve District of Cook County, with partner organizations leading individual events.

Equilibrium 07-07-2013 06:35 PM

Don't you 2 hate me or anything because I like events where people are exposed to natural areas regardless of whether they’re a restoration or a revegetation BUT.... and this is a big BUT…. I’ve got serious reservations about Millennium Reserve ever amounting to the “image” they’re attempting to create in our minds. What I’m seeing is more of a public relations blitz via all these events that are designed to get us behind their “open space” projects making some of the richest people in the world even richer while letting others off the hook for cleaning up land they used and abused while making $$$ hand over fist, ‘New Nature Preserves To The North, South, And East’, New Nature Preserves To The North, South, And East: Chicagoist, “To the south, the proposed 140,000-acre Millennium Reserve received a million dollar grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that will go a long way towards restoring former industrial land in the Calumet region into a recreational asset. It is a bold concept, transforming abandoned blight on the Southeast Side and Northwest Indiana into the biggest park in the lower-48 states (more than 12 times the size of Lincoln Park). Though the nearly $12 million that has been raised for the project so far seems like only a drop in the slag-filled bucket to us, Cameron Davis, a senior adviser with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (and former director of the Alliance for the Great Lakes) is optimistic:
"Few places have seen as much abuse and neglect and have been written off like the Lake Calumet region. But every place is salvageable.”
To the east, the City announced that Jeanne Gang’s cool and whimsical vision for accessible nature at Northerly Island would begin to move forward, transforming what used to be Meigs Field into a small preserve that will represent six different ecosystems---and a campground! Check out Chuck’s full run-down on the project.” Why tap into tax payers for what’s going to end up being at least a billion $$$ clean up of all the hydrocarbons, lead, arsenic, mercury, cadmium, CFC’s, dioxins, polychlorinated biphenyls, pesticides, fungicides, benzene, xylene, tolune, and other toxins when we’ve got an EPA that should be citing current landowners as in the folk who hold titles to properties like ohhhhh…. the old smelting factory? Lemme guess…. much of the land is now owned by BigBank “stakeholders” and “partnered” speculators who were brought in on the ground floor of this “project” thanks to all the corruption and all the crony capitalists cutting deals behind closed doors. Am I missing something here>>>? Clean up could be as high as $200 a square foot or more in some of these so-called “blighted” areas and already I’ve been hearing talk of full scale remediation not being economically feasible. What are they really trying to “conserve” here because it’s certainly not biodiversity.
I’m all for open space... it's just that these events they’re spotlighting to promote Millennium Reserve aren’t representative of “open space” to me. They’re bankrolling Millennium Reserve with our tax payer $$$.... which I don’t see any of us being able to stop at this point…. shouldn’t we start pressuring them into setting aside a LOT more than 15,000 of the 200,000 acres slated for development for actual ecological restorations? Those small preserves they’ve incorporated into their design that are supposed to be “representative” of ecosystems aren’t enough carrot to dangle in front of my face because I've no doubt they’ll be dependent on “life support” into perpetuity…. just like all our man-made wetlands. Lemme guess again…. caring for those tiny pockets that are “representative” of ecosystems will create some of the “green” jobs we’ve been promised. 15,000 acres for nature preserves within Millennium Reserve is less than 10% of the total land being acquired for this project. Revegetating and restoring such a disproportionately low percentage of the total “project” just doesn’t seem fair to all the little people stuck footing the ongoing bill for this project especially when Chicagoans need updated sewage and water treatment plants and an end to the ongoing carp threats. I seriously can’t help thinking that all that glitters isn’t gold unless…. you’re 1 of the Millennium Reserve’s partners or stakeholders.

Equilibrium 07-07-2013 07:59 PM

Anyone can totally blow me off if they want…. my feelings for sure won’t be hurt but…. if anyone’s interested in trying to take a peek behind the poster child Millennium Reserve sustainable development curtain by following some of the $$$… it might prove interesting. Here goes…
'Chicago’s next design competition: the Millennium Reserve', Chicago?s next design competition: the Millennium Reserve | Landscape Urbanism, "For all of you entrepreneurs: In Chicago, the largest urban renovation project in the continental United States is underway.
The announcement of the Millennium Reserve may not have been loud enough, receiving very little press that touts it as anything more than an open space project. (note 1) But to think of the Reserve only in these terms would be to limit its potential for breeding innovative design practices in a global city. The initiative begs designers to establish new ways of working by building novel relationships between ecological restoration, public land acquisitions, private investment, and regional commodity networks.
‘Millennium Reserve: Chicago Building Biggest Urban Park In Continental U.S.', Millennium Reserve: Chicago Building Biggest Urban Park In Continental U.S., “The park Gov. Pat Quinn and Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced plans to construct earlier this month will be the biggest urban park on the continental U.S.
Emanuel and Quinn secured $18 million to fund improvements to over 140,000 acres of undeveloped land on Chicago’s south side, NBC Chicago reports. The land will be developed into a tourist-attracting greenspace called the Millennium Reserve
AMERICA’S GREAT OUTDOORS: Salazar Announces $1 million for Millennium Reserve Restoration and Conservation Projects', Salazar Announces 1 million for Millennium Reserve Restoration and Conservation Projects, “Salazar made the announcement today at Chicago’s Millennium Reserve, along with U.S. Senator Dick Durbin; Illinois Department of Natural Resources Director Marc Miller; and other federal, state and local officials and community organizations. Salazar is in Illinois as part of a four-state swing through the Midwest to highlight America’s Great Outdoors initiatives that enhance conservation efforts, foster outdoor recreation opportunities, create jobs, and fuel local economies.
“One of the major goals of President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors initiative is to work with states, local communities and other partners to establish a network of great urban parks that will help expand outdoor opportunities in and around cities,” Salazar said.”
The Great Outdoors ... Sustainable Development: What you need to know (Part 1 of 2), Sustainable Development:, "Currently there are 544 American cities in which ICLEI is being paid with tax dollars from city councils to implement and enforce Sustainable Development. ICLEI is there to assure that the mayors keep their promises and meet their goals. Climate change, of course, is the ICLEI mantra.
Rather than protecting the environment; their programs are about reinventing government with a specific political agenda. ICLEI and others are dedicated to controlling your locally elected public officials to quietly implement an all encompassing tyranny over every community in the nation.”
ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability USA, ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability USA - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, "ICLEI USA’s stated mission is “to build, serve, and drive a movement of local governments to advance deep reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and achieve tangible improvements in local sustainability.” ICLEI USA acts as a consultant and resource-sharing network to its local government members. Local governments typically join ICLEI to access its energy and greenhouse gas accounting software, tools, technical guidance, training, and peer networking to connect with other local governments and share questions and solutions. ICLEI also helps to represent local governments at international climate meetings and negotiations.[2]…. In 2009, former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley launched the Chicago Green Office Challenge in partnership with ICLEI USA as an innovative strategy to significantly improve the environmental performance of commercial buildings, which account for a major share of the city’s greenhouse gas emissions. Today, the Green Business Challenge[21] is a popular program - among cities large and small - that engages commercial property managers, office tenants, and other business sectors in reducing their energy, waste, and water use. ICLEI co-developed this innovative program (first launched in Chicago) in response to a growing need by local governments to engage the commercial sector in climate action and sustainability goals. The program has now successfully expanded into several major cities including; Westchester, NY; San Diego, CA; Houston, TX; Arlington County, VA, Saint Louis, MO; and Charleston, SC.
2013 National Planning Conference, Final Program, Plan Big Chicago, http://www.planning.org/conference/program/pdf/final.pdf
‘Chicago Plans Park 10 Times Bigger than Manhattan’, Chicago Plans Park 10 Times Bigger than Manhattan, “This is an astonishingly incorrect interpretation. Does it really seem feasible to convert 100,000 plus acres of urban land to parkland for $17 million? Of course not.”
'Executive Order Creating the Steering Committee for the Millennium Reserve', Executive Orders: Executive Order 3 (2013), "WHEREAS, the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core, although still retaining the largest concentration of industrial jobs in the City of Chicago, now includes significant areas of existing or former industrial and manufacturing land that suffers from contamination, abandonment and fragmented ownership that stands in the way of economic revitalization in the area;
WHEREAS, the area within the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core boundary has been economically challenged by the decline of heavy industry and the loss of jobs and that there is an opportunity to create new jobs in the land conservation, brownfield remediation, and public recreation industries;
WHEREAS, the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core -served by major rail, highway and waterway transportation systems - is a center for intermodal freight shipping and the increased economic development that takes advantage of these transportation systems would greatly benefit the City of Chicago, the State of Illinois, and the region as a whole;”
Millennium Reserve Partners and Key Stakeholders, Millennium Reserve : Partners and Key Stakeholders, “Arcelor Mittal….Black Metropolis Convention and Tourism Council….Cardno Entrix…Delta Institute…Environmental Law and Policy Center…Funk Linko Inc. ….Futurity, Inc…Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation…Holcim US Inc….McCaffery Interests ….Metropolitan Planning Council….Quad Communities Development Corporation,,,Skidmore, Owings & Merrill….SmithGroupJJR,,,Spaceco, Inc…Stantec Consulting….Studio Gang…The Dobbins Group, Inc….UmojaOne…V3 Companies… and Weaver Boos Consulting
More Millennium Reserve Partnerships and they’re not even shy about their affiliations with the UN, ‘Office Depot And ICLEI Announce Expansion of National Green Business Challenge', Office Depot And ICLEI Announce Expansion of National Green Business Challenge — ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability USA, "In 2013, four more cities will be selected to receive funding to launch their own Green Business Challenge programs – building on the successful Challenges that ICLEI and Office Depot helped launch with local governments in Chicago, Austin, Bellevue, Chula Vista and the Triangle J region.
Office Depot also announced that it will help ICLEI USA establish a Green Business Challenge resource center that will support cities and counties wishing to develop a Green Business Challenge, as well as a network of Green Business Challenge communities to encourage sharing of successful practices.
The announcement was made at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Business & Civic Leadership Center’s Bricks & Sticks Sustainability Symposium – an event designed to showcase outstanding examples of public-private partnerships making a difference in America
'The Green Development in Chicago', World Business Chicago Web Proof, "Following the United Nation's Rio Conference on Environment and Development in 1992, an international action plan—known as Agenda 21—recognized local governments as critical to implementing green or "sustainable" development. In 2004, Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley charged 18 members of his cabinet to work together to develop Chicago's first environmental action plan. Over the last 14 years, the City of Chicago has pioneered this concept, known as green urbanism.
Much of Chicago's strategy involves utilizing its purchasing power, construction practices, and operations protocol to serve as a catalyst in making Chicago the most environmentally friendly city to live in. From energy to fuel efficiency, from green technology centers to parks and buildings, Chicago is leading the nation in innovative concepts that will reshape how cities worldwide approach and rebuild their natural environments.” Me thinks our fragile ecosystems were set aside for a greater good a long long time ago……
'How open is the Millennium Reserve 'open space' project?', How open is the Millennium Reserve 'open space' project? | WBEZ 91.5 Chicago, "While it is undoubtedly ambitious, and unique in a few ways, the “open space” project is not exactly that. After all, the initial project area (the “Calumet Core”) is home to nearly half a million people, as well as 2,000 acres of industrial land.
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources prefers the more accurate, admittedly less sexy, term “one of the largest collaborative urban open space projects” in the country.
At 140,000 acres, the Calumet Core certainly is a huge tract of land. Open space holdings in that area, however, only total about 15,000 acres. That includes Indian Ridge Marsh, the Burnham Greenway, and other high-profile projects.”
Creating a Cultural Venue with an Economic Impact’, World Business Chicago Web Proof, “Millennium Park, Chicago's newest addition to its extensive lake front park system, formally opened on July 16, 2004 with a grand celebration. This 24.5 acre park—Chicago's front yard—transformed 16.5 acres of commuter rail lines, a parking lot and eight acres of shabby parkland into an outdoor cultural venue. It's a place for locals as well as tourists to enjoy gardens, ice-skating, outdoor concerts, restaurants, festivals, fountains and interactive public art.
Millennium Park was funded by an extraordinary public/private partnership. The city's $270 million commitment came from $175 million in construction bonds and $95 million in tax increment financing (TIF) bonds. The private sector generated $160 million for the park's features and $60 million for a separate campaign for the Harris Theater for Music and Dance.
The park's impact on Chicago's economy was established years before its official opening….Additional economic benefits of Millennium Park are its ability to attract new businesses and to enhance existing ones. This will result in more jobs, increase tax revenue, maximize the occupancy of retail space, expand hotel occupancy and increase tourism. The stretch of Michigan Ave. south of the river has always lacked the notoriety attributed to the northern portion's "Magnificent Mile." Until Millennium Park opened there was a high rate of retail vacancies and the existing stores were not considered high end.” I see they had extensive economic impact studies completed but my question is…. where are the environmental impact studies for Millennium Park? I guess I’m really disgusted…. this looks a lot to me like “partnerships” were formed decades ago by entities that don’t exactly value ecosystems unless…. they can be exploited and $$$ can be made off them. We’re gonna get fleeced…. we’re gonna end up stuck footing their for-profit multi-billion $ development…. and in exchange…. we get to camp under the stars surrounded by revegetations that are “representative” of ecosystems. And yet they keep calling it “open space” and we keep believing them.

Wildlife_Biologist 07-09-2013 04:25 PM

Not only is Millennium Reserve based on a hoax - - it has nothing to do with open space or the environment.

Developers came up with a bribe for their indulgences. This is business as usual. What is amazing is there are millions so ignorant they are unaware of what is transpiring at their very feet.

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