HOK’s Kimberly Dowdell, Director of Business Development, and Domenic Salpietra, Regional Leader of Planning, both based in HOK’s Chicago studio, are leading the Little Village Commercial Corridor Study with assistance from the Little Village Chamber of Commerce. Little Village is the largest center of Mexican commerce and culture in the city and anchored by 26th Street, the community’s main commercial corridor.
The Little Village Commercial Corridor is characterized by shops, offices, and restaurants. Working with local leaders and residents on a community-based needs assessment, the team has prioritized raising the visibility of 26th Street as a destination, enhancing the pedestrian environment, maintaining the Mexican entrepreneurial culture for the next generation, and completing new development opportunities. Strategies for achieving these goals include:
- Streetscape: strengthening identity and experience through a better public realm
- Placitas: creating new social, cultural, and economic spaces in the corridor
- Parklets: piloting a program to create pop-up social and community spaces along the length of the 26th Street corridor
In addition to HOK and the Little Village Chamber of Commerce, the team included representatives from Latent Design, Lamar Johnson Collaborative, Roosevelt University, Habitat, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner and SOM. CCAC, WBC, and the five teams will now work together with the community partners to develop an actionable set of next steps for each neighborhood.