Tuesday, March 4, 2014

South Loop Sidewalk Stewards

Whether summer or winter, sidewalk maintenance and beautification is a big part of being a good neighbor. Starting in 2014, the Greater South Loop Association will celebrate neighbors that go above and beyond to make the public right-of-way safe, clean, welcoming and attractive – thus, the South Loop Sidewalk Stewards!

Winter awards will be given for consistent and thorough snow and ice management of the public right-of-way: including sidewalks, parking areas, ADA ramps, bike lanes, Divvy stations, etc.

Recognize this spot? Not a likely Sidewalk Steward Award nominee!

Awards for the rest of the year will be given for landscaping quality, litter and debris removal, public art, and supporting an active, walkable neighborhood.

How it works:
Nominate a South Loop Sidewalk Steward by sharing photos (or video) of laudable sidewalk upkeep via the GSLA Facebook page or on their Twitter feed, then send a quick e-mail to GSLA Board member Josh Ellis with some supporting information. Be sure to note the address, date, and business name (if applicable) of your nominee – anything to help build the case. Be sure to include your name as well.
Nominations for Winter 2013-2014 are due by April 1, 2014.
Nominations for Summer 2014 are due by October 1, 2014.

  • A public online vote will be held and the results will be taken into account by the judging panel.
  • That evidence, in addition to site visits and general knowledge, will be used by a panel of judges to determine winners in 3 categories –residential, commercial, and institutional (i.e. church, park, school, etc.). The judging panel will be announced soon.
  • Winners will be announced at the May 17, 2014 GSLA Community Updates meeting and November 15, 2014 GSLA State of the South Loop meeting.
  • Self-nominations will be accepted, but nominations of your neighbors and neighborhood businesses are encouraged.
  • Use of environmentally sustainable practices is also encouraged – not too much salt, use native plants, water conservation, etc. Wonder what we call sustainable? We go by the Lawn to Lake standards, a program of the Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant. Want to know more about native plants? The City of Chicago has a list you can use.
  • This is meant to reward GOOD behavior. We all know that some folks in the neighborhood do a pretty pitiful job of maintaining the public right-of-way. We get it. But we want to acknowledge and celebrate those that do things right.

Questions? Contact GSLA Board member Josh Ellis, joshua.nb.ellis@gmail.com . Additionally, GSLA is actively seeking a sponsor for the South Loop Sidewalk Stewards – please contact GSLA Board member Josh Ellis if interested.

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