The Prairie District Neighborhood Alliance is concerned with issues that affect the quality of life in our community. Issues such as education and schools, proposed residential and commercial development, zoning regulations, traffic and infrastructure improvements, as well as social activities and events that will strengthen our neighborhood. The intention being: To sponsor a variety of comprehensive community surveys and an assortment of projects such as neighborhood festivals, block parties, seasonal celebrations, crime prevention activities, historical and educational programs and beautification plans for upgrading neighborhood parks.
With such rapid growth in the South Loop, residents who live within the Prairie District Neighborhood Alliance boundaries have become increasingly concerned about the quality of new development and the quality of work performed on buildings converted to residential use. Condo boards and residents have begun to band together to make their voices heard. Some have already achieved high-profile status. Additionally, the Prairie District Neighborhood Alliance and area residents work with the Alderman to actively review proposed development projects in an effort to encourage smart growth and to protect the architectural character of the Historic Prairie Avenue District seeking to be respectful of important nearby structures such as the Landmark Glessner House Museum and Clarke House Museum.
On September 6, 2008 Alderman Robert Fioretti presented The Prairie District Neighborhood Alliance with a City Council Resolution declaring September 6th as ‘Prairie Avenue Day’. The City Council Resolution was presented to the PDNA at The Festival on Prairie Avenue, Mayor Richard M. Daley was in attendance during this significant moment. The Festival on Prairie Avenue, which took visitors back to the time of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in recognition of the street’s restoration to its 1890’s appearance, was attended by over 1,200 residents. At the Festival, the PDNA honored Mayor Richard J. Daley for his role in creating ‘The Prairie Avenue Historic District’, the first Historic District in Chicago. Chicago Mayor (and neighbor) Richard M. Daley attended the Festival and accepted the honor on behalf of his father.
Prairie District Neighborhood Alliance and it’s residents banned together to successfully save the Vietnam Veterans Art Museum building at 1801 S. Indiana Avenue, a cultural pillar of the neighborhood, from being sold privately and converted into a night club. Instead, the building was purchased by the city of Chicago and conveyed to the Chicago Park District to become a new Community Center.
The PDNA has presented recommendations to the Commission on Chicago Parks and the Alderman to name a new park which is located near 18th and Calumet Avenue, the site which marks the 1812 Fort Dearborn Massacre. On August 15, 2009 (the anniversary of the battle) the PDNA joined with the Alderman, Chicago Park District officials, Historians, Native Americans, Illinois Armory National Guardsman, Battle Descendants and a large number of community residents to commemorate and officially name the site as the Battle of Fort Dearborn Park and unveil an historic marker outlining the site’s significance. The PDNA is also focusing on the development of other highly anticipated neighborhood parks.
By aligning with the Alderman, businesses, cultural institutions and other like minded organizations, the PDNA and it’s residents aim to bring much needed infrastructure and retail to the area.
View Prairie District Neighborhood Alliance Wikipedia article.