CCAC eNews
October 2015
CCAC eNews is the monthly newsletter of the Chicago Central Area Committee. For more information about the CCAC or to inquire about membership, please contact Kelly O'Brien at (312) 602-5148 or
2016 CCAC Meeting Calendar Under Development!
The CCAC 2016 Meeting Calendar is under development, with meetings typically taking place the second Tuesday of the month from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. over lunch.  If your office would like to host a meeting and/or you have an idea for a presenter, please contact Kelly O'Brien at
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CCAC Learns About the State of Art of Architecture
CCAC would like to thank Jon B. DeVries, AICP, CRE, Director of the Marshall Bennett Institute of Real Estate at the Walter E. Heller College of Business at Roosevelt University for hosting CCAC’s monthly luncheon on October 13, 2015.  At the meeting the membership heard about the Chicago Architecture Biennial. 
The luncheon was opened by Jack Guthman, Partner Emeritus of Taft Stettinius & Hollister, LLP, who commented that Mayor Emanuel had a vision for a new citywide cultural plan, and that Commissioner Boone of the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events has been implementing that vision, with the Chicago Architecture Biennial being a major step in that plan.  He said that privately funded celebration has contributions from over 100 architects from 30 different companies, and the biennial, “Explores the art of architecture as a social practice.” 
The leader of the celebration, Sarah Herda, (left) Director of the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, went through the different aspects of the biennial explaining, “Architecture is the most important asset in the city, and it hadn’t been celebrated to its significance in this city before.”  She added, “Whether architecture is good or bad, it is who we are.”
Most of the Biennial is being hosted in the Chicago Cultural Center. To begin with the building’s windows were turned into a blank canvas for 65 different window treatments.  Inside the building there is over 70,000 square feet of venue space being used.  Outside the Cultural Center Building there are displays at the Stony Island Arts Bank and the S.C. Johnson Research Tower & Administrative Building, compete with free transportation to the latter.  
There are many impressive displays inside the Chicago Cultural Center, including a home built to full scale for a total cost of only $8,000.  This is a sample of cutting edge sustainable and affordable housing.  In addition, in an effort to build things that will last beyond the Biennial a kiosk was built at Chicago’s lakefront to replace a dilapidated structure that was beyond its useful life.  
Following Ms. Herda, CCAC members and major contributors to the Biennial, Christopher Marcinkoski (above left), Design Director, and Andrew Moddrell (above right), Managing Director, of PORT Urbanism, showed one of  their contributions which was to imagine a new and improved Chicago Lakefront along the city’s central business district.  Their idea, which was designed to spark a creative discussion and not necessarily to make a realistic proposal, was to completely transform the lakefront into a dramatic urban space instead of the current underutilized strip of concrete and grass.  To fund the project they proposed selling land east of Grant Park, and in the great spirit of Chicago’s history of creating new property in Lake Michigan they proposed what they called “The Big Shift” by explaining, “If you can’t build east of Lake Shore Drive, then move Lake Shore Drive!”
The meeting was concluded with the speakers offering private tours of the Biennial if groups or classes wanted an in depth look at the various displays. 
NOTE A DATE CHANGE:  Walking Tour Offered and Central Area Connector White Paper Update
There will be a walking tour of the proposed Connector route on Friday, November 6 from 1 p.m. to approximately 3 p.m. for any interested party.  The tour will begin at the corner of Illinois and Columbus, and will end at Union Station.  To RSVP please e-mail
There has also been a date change for the next Steerting Committee meeting, which is now scheduled for Thursday, November 12, 2015 at Bryan Cave from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.  At this meeting the committee will be reviewing the first draft of the federally funded White Paper.  We hope you will join us.  
Next CCAC Meeting: Tuesday, November 10, 2015 at Sidley Austin
Join us at Sidley Austin on Tuesday, November 10, 2015 for the next CCAC lunch meeting, hosted by David Siegel, Partner.
Please Note: As per the Executive Committee, CCAC lunch meetings are limited to paid members, their guests, and specially invited individuals only. To inquire about CCAC membership, please contact Kelly O'Brien at

Kirk Dillard,
Chairman of the Board, Regional Transportation Authority


Tuesday, November 10, 2015



Noon—1:30 p.m.



Sidley Austin

1 S. Dearborn St., Chicago



David Siegel, Partner

Kelly O'Brien at

The schedule for 2016 meetings is under development.  If you are willing to host one of the monthly lunch meetings, or have proposals for programs, please e-mail  
The monthly meeting for December has two big changes.  First CCAC will meet on Wednesday, December 9 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. for a special holiday reception (instead of Tuesday for lunch). CCAC's guest presenter will be Department of Planning and Development Commissioner David Reifman.
CCAC will be officially launching a new membership tier of Young Leaders in 2016. Young Leaders will have quarterly networking opportunities throughout the year, the option to attend one regular CCAC meeting luncheon, and an invitation to the CCAC annual Holiday Reception.  Please have Young Leaders in your office contact Kelly O’Brien at for more information.
(312) 602-5148
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