2010 ANNUAL REPORT
I think we can boldly say that 2010 was another banner year for Chicago's Loop—and we at the Chicago Loop Alliance are proud to have played a vital role as catalyst for Chicago's most dynamic mixed-use district. Through exciting collaborations and partnerships, we’ve completed another successful year of driving traffic to the Loop while also overseeing the services that keep the area safe, clean and vibrant. The Loop continues to thrive and evolve as Chicago's downtown nexus of residence, commerce, education and culture—truly a place to live, work and play.
A burgeoning theme for CLA this year was building on our use of visual art as a platform for enlivening and drawing people to the Loop. Highlights included the Pop-Up Art Loop program, which transformed vacant Loop storefronts into public art galleries, exhibits and studios, showcasing Chicago's diverse artist community. We also launched Art Loop 2010—one of our most ambitious initiatives to date—featuring Chicago-based contemporary artist Tony Tasset’s three-story sculpture, EYE, and flipbook banner series, CARDINAL. Finally, Art Loop Open transformed the Loop into an interactive, multi-venue public art competition and awarded $60,000 in prizes to top vote-getters.
It was both humbling and gratifying to have these programs recognized by the Chicago Tribune, when the newspaper honored me as Chicagoan of the Year in Visual Arts. While the article called out my name for this honor, it is truly a testament to the joint efforts of our board, members, corporate sponsors, partners and staff. It is their creative, forward-thinking and steadfast work that has brought these programs to life. I would specifically like to acknowledge the leadership and vision of CLA’s Board Chairman, Lou Raizin. His tireless energy and unparalleled commitment have been an inspiration to me personally and the entire organization.
Honors aside, the most important barometer of our success is that we are authentically and innovatively living out CLA’s mission to promote the Loop and drive economic development within the central business area. Our new arts initiatives were created to this end, augmenting ongoing annual events like Winter WonderLoop, which once again drew large crowds to the Loop during the holiday season. We also continued our robust series of networking and speaker events for our members, which further knit together the fabric of our membership.
We have much to celebrate, and I remain ever-grateful to all of our partners who continue to be integral to our success. Here’s to more collaborative new programs in 2011!
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