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2023 APA-IL State Conference

North Central College, Naperville

September 11-13, 2023

Mobile Workshops

Come explore the western suburbs from an urban planner's point of view!

All mobile workshops will depart from Wentz Concert Hall. Be aware: space is limited and workshops will sell out.

Already registered? Email to add mobile workshops to your registration.

Mobile Workshops Offered:

(links below will scroll page down to the description)

🚌=bus transportation  🚶=walking 

!! Please note: items on this page are subject to change !!

We will be updating this page with new information up to the conference dates.


Housing Discrimination in DuPage: Sundown Towns, Restrictive Covenants, and Segregated Spaces

Monday, Sept. 11

2:45 PM - 4:00 PM

CM | 1.25

Similar to the suburbs all over America, 20th century exclusionary devices in DuPage County shaped suburban community development.  This session will explore the devices and tools used locally such as restrictive covenants, sundown town practices, real estate practices, and homeowner preferences preventing people of color and religious minorities from accessing area housing during the suburban boom of the 20th century. It also highlights political, cultural, and legal strategies in the suburban campaign for open housing including influences from corporations, churches, and colleges.


This session will feature content from the award-winning national project: “Unvarnished: Housing Discrimination in the Northern and Western US.” Participants will view the pop-up traveling exhibit for Unvarnished highlighting Naperville’s history.


Unvarnished is a free online exhibit that examines the history of residential segregation in America by spotlighting six communities throughout the Northern and Western United States and placing these histories within the national context. Naper Settlement was the project lead, along with a consortium of six history museums and cultural organizations from across the country (Oak Park, West Hartford, CT, Columbus, OH, Appleton, WI, Brea, CA) from 2017-2022. Unvarnished was funded through a Museum National Leadership Grant.  


Naper Settlement is a 13-acre outdoor history museum that consists of thirty historical buildings and structures from the Naperville region. With a commitment to the community and a focus to the future, the mission of the Naperville Heritage Society is to collect, document, preserve, and support the history of Naperville.

Cost: $10.00

Speakers: Dr. Andrea Field, Jeanne Schultz Angel


Details: Meet in Wentz Concert Hall 10 minutes before departure. Please be sure to wear your walking shoes and dress for the weather!

Transportation: Walk

Fox Valley Mall 2.0

Tuesday, Sept. 12

8:30-10:00 am

CM | 1.5

Prior to the pandemic, the City of Aurora completed a Route 59 Corridor Study with assistance from Schoppe Design. The heart of the new Corridor Plan was to support the conversion of the Fox Valley Mall into a mixed-use campus.  The developers used the plan to springboard towards implementation. The result. A project of regional importance!  A site visit to the Fox Valley Mall will include meeting with the General Manager, Scott Samson who will give a walking tour and we will learn the process that the developer and the City went through.  Rory from Kimley Horn will also be joining us. Rory was key in the transportation planning and improvements for the campus. The Fox Valley Mall, on Route 59, is a shopping center that has served generations of Aurora area residents and visitors is in the midst of a rejuvenation. The owners of the Mall - Centennial Group - has partnered with nationally renowned architecture firms Atlantic Residential and Focus to build two different phases of luxury rental apartments – one on the former Sears site and the second on the former Carson’s site. The redevelopment plans for Fox Valley 2.0, is a complete transformation of the shopping center that will create a more modern and desirable mixed-use development combining the best retail, dining and entertainment with contemporary residential living.

Cost: $40.00


Speakers: Trevor Dick, FAICP (City of Aurora), Tracey Vacek (City of Aurora), Rory Fancler, AICP, PTP (Kimley Horn), Scott Samson (Centennial Group)

Details: Meet in Wentz Concert Hall 10 minutes before departure. Please be sure to wear your walking shoes and dress for the weather.

Transportation: Bus, Walk

Fox Valley
NCC Sustainability

North Central College Sustainability Tour

Tuesday, Sept. 12

8:30 AM - 9:30 AM

CM | 1.0

Get boots on the ground and see North Central College's Sustainability Features which include solar panels, geothermal, garden projects and more! Details are forthcoming.

Cost: $10.00

Speakers: TBD

Details: Meet in Wentz Science Building, Room Stevenson E, 10 minutes before departure. Please be sure to wear your walking shoes and dress for the weather!

Transportation: Walk


Build it and They Will Come - Behind the scenes look at Wheaton's Downtown Revitalization

Tuesday, Sept. 12

10:15-12:45 pm

CM | 2.5

Over the past decade, the City of Wheaton, Illinois has undertaken a journey to elevate the historic downtown district as a regional destination. The Downtown Strategic and Streetscape Plan (the Downtown Plan) has already begun to prove that the evidence-based approach and the goals set by the City and community guided by design principles that facilitated interaction of people and promoted commerce, smart growth, and redevelopment are yielding the targeted outcomes. Wheaton now has complete streets for transit, walkability, commerce, bicycling, recreation, sustainability, and safety. Behind the scenes a lot of effort went into the construction process and making sure that the TIF allocations resulted in the maximum return on investment for the future. Often times, the actual construction costs and contingencies cannot be anticipated at the onset. Wheaton’s successful completion of their downtown revitalization, and some of the challenges and successes they encountered along the way can provide key-takeaways for the participants.

Cost: $40.00

Speakers: Manisha Kaul, James Kozik, AICP (City of Wheaton), Allison Orr, John Duguay

Details: Meet 10 minutes before departure. Please be sure to wear your walking shoes and dress for the weather!

Transportation: Bus, Walk

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Word on the Street(scape): From Community Vision to Implementation in Downtown Naperville

Tuesday, Sept. 12

2:00 PM - 4:00 PM

CM | 2.0

This tour will highlight a real world example of how a planning study was used to implement a streetscape project.  To address increased demand in developments, Naperville developed and adopted Streetscape Design Standards through robust community feedback. A goal of those standards is to increase walkability and foster economic growth as catalytic development interests increase. The project team will walk through examples of streetscape projects that are currently in various phases of design and construction, and provide insights on the public-private partnership that achieved a major first step in implementing the community’s vision. The speakers will share the designer’s perspective on how information from planning studies was considered and used during the design and implementation process. The mobile workshop will cover topics such as parking, the need to create more space for pedestrians, and prioritizing walkability and safety for all users in the downtown. The mobile workshop will also review how the project was coordinated with local business owners and how local zoning and building standards were applied

Cost: $10.00

Speakers: Kristin Kalitowski, Phillip Hutchinson, Kathron Rubush

Details: Meet in Wentz Concert Hall 10 minutes before departure. Please be sure to wear your walking shoes and dress for the weather!

Transportation: Walk

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Downtown Naperville
DuPage Trails

DuPage Trails Plan - Strengthening the Regional Network

Tuesday, Sept. 12

2:00 PM - 5:00 PM

CM | 3.0


Join us for a tour along the Illinois Prairie Path to Aurora and learn how the DuPage County Trails Plan enhances the regional trail network for all users. We will visit locations along the Illinois Prairie Path that exemplify the enhancements recommended in the Trails Plan. Attendees will learn about the planning process for the Trails Plan which used best practices for trail user safety, environmental stewardship, wayfinding, and creative public engagement (especially during the COVID-19 pandemic) to enhance the County’s regional trail network. Tour guides will synthesize the Trails Plan ideas within a context that promotes the history and importance of the United States’ oldest rail trail. There will be plenty of stops to talk with guest speakers, and opportunities for questions and discussion. Be sure to wear comfortable clothes and dress for the weather.

Cost: $40.00

Speakers: Sidney Kenyon (DuPage County), Ryan Peterson (Epstein)

Details: Meet in Wentz Concert Hall 10 minutes before departure. Please be sure to wear your walking shoes and dress for the weather. 

Transportation: Bus

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St James Farm

St. James Farm Forest Preserve Stream Re-meandering

Tuesday, Sept. 12

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

CM | 1.0

The Illinois Tollway (Tollway), in 2018, as part of its Move IL Program Central Tri-State Project (CTS), entered into an intergovernmental agreement with the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County (District) for the Spring Brook Phase 2 Project (Project). This agreement established scope and responsibilities for the Project, specifically that the Tollway assumes financial responsibility and the District will design, construction and maintain ownership of the site. Further, by establishing this partnership, the Tollway was able to meet all regulatory Waters of the U.S. mitigation requirements for the CTS via permittee responsible mitigation with the Project’s creation of over 18 acres of new wetlands and the restoration of over 5,000 linear feet of Spring Brook Creek within Blackwell Forest Preserve.

The design intent of the Project is to restore Spring Brook Creek through a “functional lift” of the hydraulics and geomorphology with the goal of providing an overall improvement to the biological functions of the stream ecosystem. The functional lift is achieved by removing an on-stream impoundment control structure and modifying the stream bed and banks to create a continuous channel with stream meanders, pool/riffle structure, reconnection of the stream channel to the floodplain and the reestablishment of wetlands in the riparian corridor. The removal of the impoundment is essential to the overall goal of the project to allow for fish passage upstream, providing the functional biological lift. Additionally, a portion of the West Branch DuPage River Regional trail was relocated within the Project area and a new pedestrian bridge over the newly meandered stream was built.

Project Benefits:

  • Meets the goals of the DuPage County - West Branch DuPage River Watershed Plan

  • Consistent with the FPDDC’s Master Plan for Blackwell Forest Preserve

  • Meets the goals of Illinois Wildlife Action Plan

  • Meets the goals of the Chicago Wilderness Biodiversity Recovery Plan

  • Meets the Goals of the DuPage River Salt Creek Work Group (DRSCW) Improvement Plan

  • Fulfills all Tollway regulatory Waters of the U.S. mitigation requirements for the Central Tri-State Project

Cost: $40.00

Speaker: Bryan Wagner, Illinois Tollway Environmental Policy and Program Manager

Details: Meet in Wentz Concert Hall 10 minutes before departure. Please be sure to wear your walking shoes and dress for the weather!

Transportation: Bus, Walk


Naperville Faces Historic Preservation Challenges

Wednesday, Sept. 13

8:45 AM - 11:00 AM

CM | 2.25

Tales from the Front: Historic Preservation in Naperville In a city with a high regard for property rights, the proposed destruction of an architecturally and historically significant library inspired a new 501 (c)(3) corporation: Save Old Nichols Library Inc., which has now evolved into Naperville Preservation Inc. Working with City planning staff, this citizens' group helped save the library and also helped preserve a historic mansion. The group's effort to save a century-old YMCA was less successful. The workshop will include visits to both the renovated library and the now-vacant YMCA site. Speakers will discuss the give and take between activists--who lobby for more staff and funding for preservation--and city planning staff who have seen limited support for preservation from elected officials.  Of particular note is a recent controversy about whether owner consent should be required for landmark designation.  New regulations represent a compromise. Even without mandatory owner consent, Naperville has just four landmarked buildings and one local historic district. In contrast, nearby Downers Grove has dozens of landmarks, all with owner consent. Speakers will compare and contrast. (Photo credit)

Cost: $10.00

Speakers: Joe McElroy (Naperville Preservation Inc.), Allison Laff, AICP (City of Naperville), Rebecca Simon (Naperville Preservation Inc.)

Details: Meet in Wentz Concert Hall 10 minutes before departure. Please be sure to wear your walking shoes and dress for the weather!

Transportation: Walk

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Naperville Historic Preservation
Childrens Museum

DuPage Children’s Museum: TOD/Urban Design Case Study

Wednesday, Sept. 13

9:45 AM - 11:45 AM

CM | 2.0

Walking tour of Downtown Naperville that ends at the DuPage Children’s Museum.

  1. Learn about the DuPage Children’s Museum, it’s mission to shape engaged thinkers and doers statewide, and its deep commitment to sustainability.

  2. Analyze how to optimize sustainability on its Metra-Station Adjacent site.

  3. Create how to transform a regional destination into a global exemplar of sustainability using the Living Building Challenge.

Cost: $10.00

Speaker: Doug Farr (Farr Associates), Andrea Wiles (DuPage Children's Museum)

Details: Meet in Wentz Concert Hall 10 minutes before departure. Please be sure to wear your walking shoes and dress for the weather!

Transportation: Walk

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