Saturday, December 03, 2005

America Unchained Day - Belated

OK, I didn't post this in time for the official day but the concept can be applied year-round.

From the Northfield Downtown Development Corporation:

On the last Saturday before Thanksgiving, the American Independent Business Alliance (AMIBA) wants retailers and consumers across the country to join in the second annual celebration of America Unchained. On November 19, consumers in communities around the country will be asked to shop only at locally owned businesses to maximize the impact of their dollars and potentially inject millions more into their local economy.

Sometimes seemingly small acts can make a big impact. Take family spending. You may think you're just fulfilling your family's wants or needs when you shop or dine out. Think again. The choice of where you spend your money makes a big difference to your community. Spending your money with locally-owned independent businesses puts your money to work directly helping your community's economy?just one way your community benefits from its home town businesses. Those businesses use goods and services of other locally-owned independent businesses--circulating your money three to three-and-a-half times longer locally than if you spend it at a chain*. This creates greater community health and prosperity.

Read the entire article here.

Another article here from Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space.

Just two weeks ago, a neighbor mentioned he rather spend his money at locally owned businesses. He just needed to be better informed on what they have to offer and where they are. I think we can help him out.

Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space: Seattle neighborhood looks forward carefully, lessons for us?

What can we learn from others? Redevelopment in Seattle and Washington DC. This post Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space: Seattle neighborhood looks forward carefully, lessons for us? compares development in Seattle and Washington DC and has a great Google Map of one Washington DC neighborhood. I find Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space and the Northfield Downtown Development Corporation as great resources for learning what is happening in other communities and how we can learn from them as we strive to redevelop downtown Elgin.

Friday, December 02, 2005

It's Happening Downtown - 12/2 - 12/11

Dinos on Parade - Fri.,December 2, 7:30pm
Come see these dinos for the last time…or take one back with you!! Please join the Elgin community with food, raffles, music, and an auction at the Gail Borden Library. Buy your tickets at the door, attire is casual.

The Nutcracker - Fri. & Sat. Dec. 2nd - 3rd
Join Downtown in going to this classic performed by the Civic Ballet of Chicago at the Hemmens. Night shows are at 7:30pm and a matinee at 3pm. Tickets are $10 or $15 if you mention “Mouse King”. To order please call 847.931.5900.

Window Wonderland - Saturday December 3rd
Time to grab the friends and family and take advantage of all the activities, sales, window decorating contest, and entertainment in Downtown Elgin!! Details

City Council Meeting - Wednesday Dec. 7th, 7pm
DNA will be recognizing the Elks Lodge and Ultimas Noticias for the Illinois Main Street Awards that they won!! The City Council meetings are aired every Friday evening at 7:30pm and Monday evenings at 7pm on Ch 17.

Gallery Night - Wed. December 7th, 8pm
Discover the intriguing shapes and attractive designs of local jewelry designer Valerie William at the Martini Room. For more info call 847.741.0349.

Senior Services Monthly Birthday Party -
Thurs, December 8, 11:30am
Got a birthday or want to help celebrate, head over to the Senior Services Associates located at 101 S. Grove Avenue in Downtown Elgin.

A Joyful Holiday with the Elgin Symphony...
Sat. & Sun. December 10th & 11th
Gather your family and join the Elgin Symphony Orchestra for Holiday Joy, with holiday classics, audience sing-a-longs, pre-concert festivities and show stopping vocal ensembles! Special guests include the talented Elgin Children's Chorus. For tickets call 847.888.0404 or go online to

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Who Lives Downtown?

Highlights from a Brookings Institution report.

During the 1990s, downtown population grew by 10 percent, a marked resurgence following 20 years of overall decline.

From 1970 to 2000, the number of downtown households increased 8 percent—13 percent in the 1990s alone—and their composition shifted.

Downtown homeownership rates more than doubled during the thirty-year period, reaching 22 percent by 2000.

In general, downtowns boast a higher percentage of both young adults and college-educated residents than the nation's cities and suburbs.

Thanks to Paul Bednar for finding the report.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

It's beginning to look a lot like more parking...the Fulton Parking Garage Opened Today!!

Initially, the parking in the Fulton Street Parking Deck will be as follows: 3 hour parking on levels 1 and 2, and 10 hour parking on levels 3, 4, and 5. The signs have been placed on the first two levels will be installed on the remaining levels within the next day or so. The City of Elgin will be monitoring the parking situation over the next 90 days to determine the pattern of use before the parking time limits are codified. The City will also be working on putting up signs at the Spring Street deck to notify individuals of the additional parking available in the Fulton Street Deck.

Note to The Elginite, it did open in November.

Walton Island Photograph

Hometown photographer, James Jordan, has a great evening photo from Walton Island here and here. Hat tip to The Elginite for pointing it out.