Saturday, June 27, 2009

Most Amsterdammers favor bicycles over cars

Tomorrow UPPSA members will meet up with students from the University of Amsterdam to tour some eco-initiatives within Chicago. Amsterdam is known for its progressive politics as well as its innovative environmental initiatives, and while Chicago is known as a "green" city, we don't quite match up with Amsterdam's eco-muscle. But how well does our beloved Portland, Oregon stack up?

In Amsterdam, the bicycle is the favored mode of transportation, even over cars. The Oregonian reports that "between 2005 and 2007 people in the city used their bikes on average 0.87 times a day, compared to 0.84 for their cars. This is the first time that bicycle use exceeds car use."

Compare Amsterdam to Portland, one of three U.S. cities to achieve the League of American Bicyclists's Platinum-level Bicycle Friendly Community Award, and Amsterdam still seems to win by a longshot. The Oregonian notes that in Portland, "only 8 percent of respondents in a recent transportation audit said [bike] was their primary mode of transportation..." and "nearly 40 percent of Amsterdam residents use their bicycles as their primary mode."

By the way, what about Chicagoland? CMAP's Travel Tracker Survey, conducted in 2007, estimates that bikes made up 1.6% of all trips taken in Cook County. While this share is sure to be greater in denser neighborhoods, it is unlikely to reach 8 percent, let alone 40.

{The Oregonian via Planetizen}

Friday, June 26, 2009

Date Change for this weekends Brownfield Tour!


If you are planning on joining Jim Van der Kloot's tour of various brownfield sites this weekend, please note that the date has changed. The tour will now be departing at 1:00 PM out front CUPPA Hall on Sunday, June 28th (not Sat. 6/27 as originally planned). The tour route has also changed, now highlighting the Chicago Center for Green Technology with an approximate 3 mile walk thereafter through the near west side, so wear a comfy pair of walking shoes.

Additionally, if you plan on joining in on this fun and educational urban hike, please reply to this email so that the UPPSA board can get an estimate as to the number of people interested.

Monday, June 22, 2009

This Saturday: Tour of Brownfields on the South Side of Chicago!


Come join UPPSA on Saturday, June 27th at 1:00 P.M. in the afternoon as we are led by Jim Van der Kloot, Land Revitalization Coordinator for the EPA, Region 5, through various brownfield sites on the south side of Chicago. This event will be hosted in conjunction with planning students visiting from the University of Amsterdam. A meeting location has yet to be determined, but expect to use public transit to get to and from the brownfield sites. Afterwards, we plan on going to a local bar or restaurant to mingle with our Dutch counterparts. Keep your eyes peeled for more details to come!

Date/Time: Saturday, June 27th at 1:00 PM

Location: TBD, but a tentative idea is to meet somewhere in/around the Lake Calumet area.

Cost: Nothing. Just the cost of public transport to/from/around the brownfield sites. Plan on bringing some extra cash if you'd like to join us at an area bar or restaurant thereafter with the students from the University of Amsterdam.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Event: APA-CMS June Program: Transportation and the Environment

Invites you to attend the

Transportation and the Environment: New Initiatives

The Yin and Yang of transportation infrastructure and environmental systems can and should be balanced. As the environmental, planning, and engineering professions evolve, there are fewer and fewer technical or financial needs requiring the sacrifice of one for the other. Indeed, there are more and more benefits to balance being discovered. This program offers planners a series of local examples of current efforts to strike this balance.

Rocco Zucchero and Angela LaPorte, Illinois State Toll Highway Authority—
Will provide an overview of the North Tri-State Bioswales Project, the Hines Emerald Dragonfly Habitat Restoration Project and other environmental efforts.

Mark DeVries, McHenry County Division of Transportation—Will provide an overview of roadway salt monitoring programs in the region.

Tunde Balvanyos, PhD., Pace BRT Coordinator, Pace Suburban Bus—Will provide an overview of the Pace Arterial Rapid Transit (ART) program.

Thursday, June 25, 2009
Registration & Lunch: 11:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon
Program: 12:00 noon to 2:00 p.m.

Illinois Tollway Central Administration Building
2700 Ogden Avenue
Downers Grove, IL 60515
NOTE: Photo ID required. Enter at east entrance. Park in north parking lot. Building is directly east of I-355/Ogden Avenue interchange.
  • From southbound 355 or eastbound 88, exit at Ogden Avenue. Turn left at end of ramp. Turn left on Authority Dr. to north parking lot.
  • From northbound 355, exit at Ogden Avenue. Turn right at end of ramp. Turn left on Authority Dr. to north parking lot.
  • From westbound 88, exit to 355 South, Then take first exit at Ogden Avenue. Turn left at end of ramp. Turn left on Authority Dr. to north parking lot.

$15 paid at the door, $5 fee for students who RSVP by June 18, 2009. The session fee is payable at registration and checks should be made payable to “APA-CMS”. Lunch will be provided.

Please email by Thursday, June 18, 2009. If you need to cancel your reservation, please do so no later than three days prior to the program.

For questions regarding the program agenda, please contact Greg Dreyer from ISTHA at (630) 241-6800 x3839 or AICP Certification Maintenance (CM) Credits (2) are pending.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Event: Bike Tour of Chicago's Near South Side

Bike Tour of Chicago's Near South Side
Saturday June 13, 2009

Starting at 10 am at UIC

Take a bike tour of Chicago's near south side! Professor Curt Winkle from UIC's Urban Planning & Policy program will lead a tour of Little Italy, Pilsen, Little Village and Chinatown by bike for those interested in Chicago history, biking and stopping for ice cream.

When: Saturday, June 13, 2009 10:00 AM
Where: Starting and ending at UIC. We are limited to a group of 25 & will advise the exact start location when you RSVP.

Please RSVP to

Length: Moderately Easy 20 mile ride in 4 hours with a few stops for lecture & ice cream.
Rain: No Rain Date. We go unless it's really pouring.

Questions: contact Beth Sholtis
Organized by Beth Sholtis, Curt Winkle, Kevin Monahan
Sponsored by the Office of Sustainability and the College of Cycling

Please wear a helmet.
Please bring your lock.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Welcome New UPPSA Board!

Please join me in welcoming the new UPPSA Board for 2009-10!

Jennessa Berg: Secretary
Katie Bowman: Vice-President
Valbona Kokoshi: APA Representative
Jason Saavedra: President
Annie Shim: Chief Activities Officer (New Position)
Mike Sobczak: Treasurer
Andy Waggoner: Professional Development Officer (New Position)

Officers begin their one-year term on June 1. The positions of Secretary, Treasurer, Professional Development Officer, and Chief Activities Officer will not officially be filled until the elected board members vote on their nomination during the first Board Meeting, which will take place within the next few weeks. However, there are no obstacles foreseen in their approval. An additional position (1st Year APA Representative) will be filled through appointment from the new students in the Fall.

I would like to express my sincere thanks to the previous Board and all of those who volunteered on working groups over the past year. They really laid the groundwork for a lot of the things we are planning for next year, and they have been extremely supportive during the transition. I trust that they will all continue to be involved, so don't worry - this is not a good-bye!

Please stay tuned for information about some fun activities to celebrate the warm weather! Also, in case you haven't visited the UPPSA blog in a while (, please do so! We are making an effort to include lots of interesting and meaningful postings and events to take up your time throughout the summer. If you are interested in being a contributor to the blog, please contact us to express your interest.

The entire UPPSA Board looks forward to representing you and serving your needs. Please contact any of us with your thoughts, concerns, ideas, complaints, and even compliments!


Jason Saavedra