Community Meeting Notice – Kenmore Woonerf

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Alderman Scott Waguespack, Alderman Michele Smith and DePaul University invite you to a community meeting for a presentation and discussion of the Woonerf design for Kenmore Avenue

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


DePaul University, Student Center, Room 120

2250 N. Sheffield

Open to the public


Proposed Kenmore Woonerf Design – FAQ’s

Alderman Scott Waguespack has suggested an alternative to the complete closure of Kenmore between Fullerton and Belden in the form of constructing a Woonerf. Alderman Michelle Smith, DePaul, and officials from the Chicago Department of Transportation support the concept.

What is a Woonerf? Woonerf is a Dutch term roughly translated as “living street”…as it is a special kind of street that functions as a shared public space by pedestrians, cyclists and slow moving vehicles. This is the vision for the Kenmore Woonerf…one that supports increased pedestrian movement and use throughout while accommodating the flow of vehicles and bicycle traffic.

How will it change Kenmore? The once proposed complete vacation and closure of Kenmore would have eliminated both vehicle traffic and parking. A Woonerf on Kenmore will remove parking but allow for vehicle traffic to continue on Kenmore, to include emergency vehicles such as fire trucks and ambulances, as well as the delivery and service vehicles that access the Schmitt Center and library loading dock area.

What are the specifics? The entire block of Kenmore would be reconstructed to add in a significant and beautiful variety of new hardscape (e.g. brick or cobblestone) and landscape materials, along with table & chair and bench seating, new bike racks and possibly a Divvy station, new period style lighting, and decorative but functional bollards to assist as traffic calming measures. The mature landscaping and built-in seating elements would help to serve as traffic calming measures as well. The strategic placement of these elements will cause vehicle traffic to move at slower speeds as they will have to maneuver through a designed placement and routing that removes the ability to drive straight through at higher speeds.

How will the street be identified? The entrance to Kenmore from Fullerton design features will provide a clear indication that this is a different street and traffic environment. A sign naming and describing the Woonerf would be included, as will the usual City street sign, one way south sign and a new sign that calls for a reduced speed down the Woonerf zone.

Who will pay? The cost of all work associated with the project would be covered by DePaul University. Maintenance of the Woonerf would be a combined effort of DePaul and the City of Chicago, with normal day to day maintenance, cleaning and repairs performed by DePaul.

What is the impact on parking? No parking will be allowed on the Kenmore Woonerf, but there will be multiple designated pull over points introduced that will allow for disabled drop-off, food trucks and other temporary loading and unloading. The loss of the 47 on-street parking spaces will be made up by DePaul providing the community with 24 hour access to various parking lots and structures. The logistics and management of this arrangement will be worked out with the Parking & Traffic Committee of the Neighborhood Advisory Committee.

When will it be implemented? The timing of a conversion is dependent upon working through details and an agreement with the City of Chicago.