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The Mechanics
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Daley Tue Aug 25 2009

A Different Kind of Do-Over in the Alleys

How about a kind word for our cuddly Mayor?

Inhabitat posts on the Mayor's initiative to "green" our 1,900 miles (over 3,500 acres) of alleyways, thus improving storm water run off and retention issues, remove impermeably services and urban heat island effects, among other potential advantages.

The inititative is a refinement of Chicago DOT's existing alley program which focused on creating more permeable surfaces. Chicago alleyways, which outnumber those of any other city in the world, are lacking in proper sewer connections causing serious flooding issues. Rather than simply opting for expensive sewer hookups, the city started retrofitting alleys with permeable pavements and pavers.

Our alleyways are one of my favorite things about Chicago. I have some very fond memories of running through and playing in alleys as a very little kid, and partying and otherwise escaping through alleyways as a man-child. Our alleys are a great asset and a great urban space; it's good to not just take them for granted, but always be thinking about what all that space--3,500 acres is a lot of acres--can be used for.

 
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Feature

Parents Still Steaming, but About More Than Just Boilers

By Phil Huckelberry / 2 Comments

It's now been 11 days since the carbon monoxide leak which sent over 80 Prussing Elementary School students and staff to the hospital. While officials from Chicago Public Schools have partially answered some questions, and CPS CEO Forrest Claypool has informed that he will be visiting the school to field more questions on Nov. 16, many parents remain irate at the CPS response to date. More...

Civics

Substance, Not Style, the Source of Rahm's Woes

By Ramsin Canon / 2 Comments

It's not surprising that some of Mayor Emanuel's sympathizers and supporters are confusing people's substantive disputes with the mayor as the effect of poor marketing on his part. It's exactly this insular worldview that has gotten the mayor in hot... More...

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About Mechanics

Mechanics is the politics section of Gapers Block, reflecting the diversity of viewpoints and beliefs of Chicagoans and Illinoisans. More...
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