Chicago River Design Guidelines Update

UPDATED Nov. 26, 2018

The City of Chicago is in the process of updating its Chicago River Design Guidelines, building upon the successful implementation of the Chicago Riverwalk, the visions and feedback received from the River Edge Ideas Lab, as well as previous plans and guidelines.

The updated design guidelines will outline how properties along the Chicago River should be developed and improved to create a more unified aesthetic, to enhance the natural environment, and to provide public access and recreational opportunities, while balancing the needs of active industrial uses critical to the City’s economy.

In addition to the multi-year planning and public engagement process that has already taken place, the Department of Planning and Development (DPD) will convene several stakeholder group meetings in the upcoming months, and will post a draft of the updated guidelines for public comment. DPD aims to finalize the updated Chicago River Design Guidelines by the end of 2018

Community Engagement Activities

The chart below provides a summary of past planning initiatives, public engagement, and community input received throughout this process.

Date Initiative Resources
August 2005 Chicago River Corridor Design Guidelines and Standards Plan Webpage
August 2016 Great Rivers Chicago Plan Website
Sept. 2017 to Jan. 2018 River Edge Ideas Lab

Exhibit Website

Summary Video

July to Oct. 2018

DPD Begins Drafting Guideline Updates  

September and October 2018

Stakeholder Group Meetings  

December 2018

Draft Updates Published for Public Review  


Please check back as this page will be updated with relevant information and dates of future community engagement activities.

DPD will accept public comment throughout the process at

 Supporting Information Facts

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