We’re entering the home stretch for this year’s Participatory Budgeting Election, where ward residents decide how to spend $1 million on ward improvement projects.
About 50 “Community Representative” volunteers worked over the past four months to narrow down all the ideas offered by neighbors at last November’s neighborhood assemblies and other venues into a great set of proposals to improve our library and parks, replace trees and install new street lights.
On this year’s Participatory Budgeting ballot, you will first be asked to vote on the percentage of the ward’s $1 million infrastructure budget you want spent on street and alley resurfacing and sidewalk repairs. Then you will be asked to choose how to spend the remainder of the budget from among eight proposed neighborhood improvement projects.
The official PB49 Election Day takes place Saturday, May 6th, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., at the Chicago Math and Science Academy, 7212 N. Clark (just south of the Rogers Park firehouse).
If you prefer to vote early, early voting will start Saturday, April 22nd, from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at my 49th Ward Service Office, 7356 N. Greenview, during my annual Spring Clean-up. The early voting will continue throughout the following two weeks at the Ward Service Office and other early voting sites. Look for announcements of the early voting times and locations.
Also, you will be able to vote online from the comfort of your own home or office. Stay tuned for more details coming soon.
Below are the proposed projects up for consideration:
Plant 100 trees throughout the 49th Ward (estimated cost: $50,000).
2. Update Clark Streetlights
Repaint all light posts, install new energy efficient LED bulbs and attach ornamental piggy-back lighting to each light post on Clark Street from Albion to Howard (estimated cost: $150,000).
3. Benches and Picnic Tables
Install seven benches and two picnic tables in Loyola and Touhy Parks and Sherwin Beach (estimated cost: $45,000).
4. Water Feature at Langdon Park
Install a new water feature to allow for fun play and cooling off in the hot summer months (estimated cost: $150,000).
5. Pratt Bike Lane Extension
Provide striped bike lanes on Pratt from Clark to Ridge (estimated cost: $30,000).
6. Murals at Sullivan High School
Paint four murals at Sullivan High School on boards to be posted on school’s exterior south wall (estimated cost: $19,200).
Install benches inside existing heat lamp shelters at Jarvis, Morse, and northbound Loyola platforms (estimated cost: $9,000 for three benches).
8. Learning Garden at Gale Academy
Install a “Learning Garden” at Gale Academy, designed to be an innovative model of urban outdoor education (estimated cost: $130,000).
To download a sample ballot that sets forth all these proposals, click here (pdf).
I look forward to seeing you at the polls!