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Neighborhood Strategy

Nothing sets Chicago apart from other destinations like the 77 vibrant neighborhoods that make our city so exciting. Choose Chicago works directly with long-time residents, small businesses, and community organizations to ensure we are authentically representing every part of our city as we encourage visitors to come experience the neighborhoods we love and call home.

Chicago has always been a city of neighborhoods, each with its distinct cultures, residents, and experiences. You can visit an authentic Mexican taqueria in Little Village, sip a cocktail in an Uptown jazz club, and explore the historic Pullman community’s worker cottages — all without leaving the city limits. No matter where you go, there’s something to do around every corner in this multifaceted “City of Neighborhoods.”

Neighborhood Content Maker Program

Choose Chicago is working directly with neighborhood residents to promote the small businesses, events, parks, museums, public art, and other attractions that make Chicago so unique. We are expanding this program in 2022 to include additional neighborhoods.Are you a resident in one of Chicago’s 77 neighborhoods? Does visiting and spreading the word about your neighborhood’s coolest spots sound like a job for you? Contact us at neighborhoods@choosechicago.com with your social media handles (Instagram and/or TikTok) and home neighborhood to be considered for participation in the Neighborhood Content Creator Program.

South Side Tourism Stakeholder Working Group

The Obama Presidential Center is scheduled to open its doors in 2025, and an estimated 850,000 visitors will come annually to learn about our nation’s first Black president and the city where he found his civic voice. Choose Chicago is proud to help bring together stakeholders from across the South Side to develop community-led neighborhood promotion strategies. Together, we are working to ensure tourists visit the many culturally rich neighborhoods of Chicago’s South Side.

If you would like to be a part of this working group, please email neighborhoods@choosechicago.com to be added to the distribution list.

Chicago Alfresco

The Chicago Alfresco program was launched in 2021 in partnership with the City of Chicago’s Department of Transportation and generously supported by a $2.5 million grant from Diageo North America. Through this program, neighborhood organizations were asked to create active community spaces that promote outdoor dining, highlight community-focused placemaking and support community identity. 

Placemaking is the iterative process of transforming common spaces into community places by cultivating a sense of ownership, belonging, and safety through community engagement, physical transformation, and the nurturing of community capacity and local leadership. Chicago Alfresco is an integral part of Choose Chicago’s push for more neighborhood tourism and one pillar of the City’s broader initiative to open streets and create places for dining, public life, community, arts, culture, walking and biking. 

Thanks to generous support from Diageo, a limited number of grants will be awarded to local community organizations such as Chambers of Commerce, Special Service Area Providers, and other not-for-profit organizations for projects dedicated to outdoor public space, with 76% of funds being distributed to communities on the South and West Sides. All neighborhood locations will be open in late Spring 2022.

Mobile data portal

We’re giving neighborhood stakeholders access to customized mobile data from Near (formerly Uber Media) that shows visitor flows to our city’s neighborhoods and tourist attractions. Using this data, neighborhoods can better understand who their visitors are and how to attract new guests.

Do you think your community organization could benefit from having access to this data? Email us at neighborhoods@choosechicago.com to request access.

Community events

Choose Chicago’s Marketing and Media Relations teams regularly promote neighborhood events through our social media channels and with reporters. Make sure to submit your events to our community calendar: https://www.choosechicago.com/events/community/add/

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