Thursday, September 4, 2014

LISC Chicago Now Accepting Applications for the 21st Annual Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards

CHICAGO – LISC Chicago has announced the opening of applications for the Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards (CNDA). Now entering its 21st year, the CNDAs recognize innovation and best practices in neighborhood development. The premier award program has grown in popularity, attendance and recognition, and is among the most publicly-recognized programs to celebrate outstanding projects and achievements in the city’s neighborhoods. 

“CNDA is the largest and most venerated celebration of the creativity and accomplishments that transform neighborhoods across the City,” said Deborah E. Bennett, CNDA Jury Chair and Senior Program Officer at the Polk Bros. Foundation. “The awards have become a source of inspiration for those committed to community vitality and renewal.” 

Established in 1995, the CNDAs recognize and honor the outstanding achievements in neighborhood real estate development and community building, as well as the essential role that both non-profit and for-profit developers play in working to build healthier neighborhoods throughout Chicago. 

“The Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards celebrate Chicago’s neighborhoods, the best community development projects, and the community and for-profit organizations behind them,” said LISC Chicago executive director Susana Vasquez. “I am excited to see this year’s applicants which demonstrate a contribution to the visual, social, and cultural life in the communities they serve.” 

In total, eight awards juried will be given out. Five community development awards will be presented along with three Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Awards for Architectural Excellence in Community Design. All award submissions go through an extensive review and nominees include for-profit and non-profit developers and organizations as well as architectural firms, and may be self-nominated or nominated by others. Applications are now open for the following awards: 

Five community development award categories are open to Chicago-area organizations and developers for application: 
The Chicago Community Trust Outstanding Community Initiative Award: Recognizes the development and successful implementation of an initiative that promotes and/or is integral to a comprehensive community development strategy. Winning recipient receives $15,000. 

The Richard H. Driehaus Award for Outstanding Non-Profit Neighborhood Real Estate: Recognizes a community development corporation for a specific real estate project that has contributed significantly to the enhancement of the community. Winning recipient receives $15,000 

The Polk Bros. Foundation Affordable Rental Housing Preservation Award: Recognizes a for-profit developer or a non-profit community development organization for a specific real estate project that has preserved affordable rental housing at risk because of expiring subsidy contracts or physical deterioration. Winning recipient receives $15,000 

The Woods Fund Chicago Power of Community Award: Recognizes the value of community organizing, community engagement, and advocacy as important and effective ways to transform neighborhoods or empower communities that have experienced significant social or economic inequities. This year, the award will recognize an organizing campaign that has genuine youth engagement and where young people were critical to the victory. Winning recipient receives $15,000 

The Outstanding For-Profit Neighborhood Real Estate Project Award: Recognizes a for-profit developer for a specific real estate project that has contributed significantly to the enhancement of the community. A monetary award is not made for this recognition. 

Three awards for the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Awards for Architectural Excellence in Community Design are open to Chicago-area organizations for application: 
Awarded to three different recipients: Recognizes best practices in community design, landscape design and architecture. The Richard H. Driehaus Awards for Architectural Excellence in Community Design are given to architects and project sponsors who have created outstanding designs in housing, retail or institutional settings that are sustainable, architecturally significant and that match form to function to meet community needs. Projects must be located in or serve low- and moderate income communities in Cook County. All projects submitted must have been completed within the last five years. The top recipient receives $15,000; second place recipient receives $3,000; and, the third place recipient receives $2,000. 

Applications are due by 5 p.m. CST on September 11, 2014. Applications are only accepted and must be submitted online. Award-winners will be notified in November and recognized at the CNDAs ceremony on February 17, 2015 at the Hilton Chicago. To apply and for more information on project eligibility and rules please

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About LISC Chicago 
LISC Chicago connects neighborhoods to the resources they need to become stronger and healthier. Part of the national nonprofit Local Initiatives Support Corporation, LISC Chicago provides grants, loans, technical assistance and other resources to more than 70 partner organizations in low- and moderate-income communities across Chicago. When neighborhoods are connected to the right resources and work together to advance robust, coordinated community development plans, they are better positioned to participate in the region’s economic growth. For more information visit

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