CITY

OPEN

WORK–

SHOP

LET'S COLLABORATE

WHAT DO WE DO?

Connect communities with design processes as a platform for civic-led spatial justice.

We are an open, collaborative group invested in supporting creative, inclusive, and meaningful processes that help communities to shape their places and spaces. CITY OPEN designs and builds opportunities for exchange and collaborations between community partners, residents, policymakers, and the urban planning and design community. We create spaces for collective dialogue, envisioning and planning that both reflect on people's stories and imagine healthy, vibrant, and strong communities in Chicago.

 
CITY OPEN TEAM
CO-FOUNDERS
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ELLE RAMEL (co-founder) is an urban planner, urban strategist, and Director at GET Chicago – GET (Gender Equality in Tech) Cities is an initiative designed to accelerate the representation and leadership of women in tech.

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PAOLA AGUIRRE (co-founder) is an architectural and urban designer, educator, and founder of Borderless, urban design and research studio focused on collaborative design agency through interdisciplinary projects.

ADVISORY TEAM
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AL WALKER is a retired Veteran of the US Army with specialties in Transportation, Engineering and Logistics, currently residing in the South Side community.

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ANJULIE RAO is a Chicago-based architecture/design journalist focused on livable build environments, public spaces, architecture criticism and radical urbanism.

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ANTHENA GORE is a social impact strategist using design, systems thinking and agile management to address climate equity and economic inclusion at the community scale.

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EMMA CUCIUREAN-ZAPAN is an architect and design strategist at SmithGroup who is passionate about understanding “the why” of architecture through data, analysis and inclusive user engagement.

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GABRIELLE LYON is an organization builder and social entrepreneur. She is founder of Project Exploration, Principal of Lyon Strategies and Executive Director of Illinois Humanities.

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JAMES YOUNG is a Chicago architect focused on design that transforms the built environment, elevates the senses and champions equity.

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STEVEN VANCE is an urban planner, creator of Chicago Cityscape and programmer who is really into OpenStreetMap, open data and tracking built environment and transportation trends.

FELLOWS
(SPRING 2021)
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GENEVIEVE WASSER is an architect preoccupied with centering environmental equity, social impact and racial justice in the design of the built environment.

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LOUISA ZHENG is an architectural designer and artist interested in the mediation of physical spaces through community participatory processes, mapping, print and documentation.