91-acre island, 37 hectares
Engineering, Environmental Science, Landscape Architecture, Master Planning, Programming, Urban Planning and Design
Award of Excellence -- Planning and Analysis, Award of Excellence -- Planning and Analysis, Great Places Award - Place Planning Category
adaptive re-use, civil engineering, coastal engineering, constructed wetlands, deep green, ecological restoration, environmental science, green design, green infrastructure, green roof, habitat restoration, innovation, landscape architecture, landscape for stormwater control, park, photovoltaic, planning, rainwater collection _ re-use, recreation, regenerative environment, renewable energy, restorative landscape, salvaged material, stormwater management, sustainability, sustainable design, sustainable master planning, urban design, urban planning, vegetated roof, walkable community, waterfront
Northerly Island represents an extraordinary opportunity to bring the transformative power of 21st century urban ecology to Chicago's renowned lakefront. A former airport adjacent to the city's Museum Campus, this man-made island is one of Chicago's last tracts of undeveloped open space on Lake Michigan.
Developed in collaboration with Studio Gang Architects, the award-winning plan establishes visionary goals for the park: create a benchmark urban destination exemplifying best practices in ecological sustainability and restoration.
To the north, visitors will enjoy a new amphitheater, a harbor walk, and an events pavilion, while the southern half of the park will reestablish native landscapes of prairie, woodland, marsh and savanna.
The park's boldest design element is a barrier reef complex to the southeast, creating a 50-acre freshwater lagoon ideal not only for recreation, but also for establishing new island ecosystems, including a perched wetland and fisheries habitat. When completed, Northerly Island will give Chicago a unique urban eco-park supporting its goal to be the “greenest city in the world."
Northerly Island Framework Plan
View a copy of the plan on the Chicago Park District's website.
Northerly Island Revamp Kicking Off
Chicago Journal article on Park District, Army Corps collaboration to implement first step of master plan.
Northerly Island wins EDRA Great Places Award
Environmental Design Research Association recognizes exemplary planning effort