Mark Roschen: 312.744.1083
Special Service Areas, known as Business Improvement Districts or BIDs in other cities, are local tax districts that fund expanded services and programs through a localized property tax levy within contiguous areas. The enhanced services and programs are in addition to those currently provided through the City.
SSA-funded projects typically include but are not limited to: public way maintenance and beautification; district marketing and advertising; business retention/attraction, special events and promotional activities; auto and bike transit; security; façade improvements; and other commercial and economic development initiatives.
The City contracts with local non-profits, called Service Providers, to manage SSAs. Mayorally-appointed SSA Commissioners for each SSA district oversee and recommend the annual services, budget and Service Provider Agency to the City. There are currently 44 active SSAs in Chicago.
The Department of Planning and Development is accepting applications from non-profit organizations that are interested in establishing or renewing a Special Service Area for 2016. To apply, a Feasibility Study must be submitted by December 1, 2014.
SSA 2016 Application Materials: