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2021 APA-IL Award Winners Announced!

Updated: Jan 7, 2022

The Illinois Chapter of the American Planning Association (APA-IL) is pleased to announce the 2021 Project Award recipients. The Chapter received a total of 18 nominations for outstanding examples of planning in Illinois. This year’s recipients demonstrated leadership in an equitable approach to engagement, innovation, and sustainability. Congratulations to all who are recognized for their hard work, which seeks to advance the profession of planning in Illinois and nationwide!

Daniel Burnham Award for a Comprehensive Plan Libertyville 2030 Comprehensive Plan

Libertyville's 2030 Comprehensive Plan presents a compelling vision and planning framework in a concise, straightforward approach that reflects the community’s preference for a clear road map and direction for local action.

Strategic Plan Award Oak Brook Reserve

The plan demonstrates short-term tactical enhancements balanced with long-term visionary thinking – fostering adaptation and resilience to uncertain ecological, social, and economic forces – ensuring enduring value and relevance which could be transferable to any community.

Best Practice Award

Woodstock Age-Friendly Livable Community Plan

Woodstock’s Age-Friendly Action Plan provides a new model that makes a strong case for the economic value of age-friendly planning, serves the entire community, is easy to use, and is implementable over time.

Public Outreach Award

“Care About the Count”: North Central IL 2020 Census Campaign Under Pandemic

The amount of engagement in this plan can only be called one thing, aggressive. A clear goal with metrics that helped to focus the strategy enabled the region to surpass previous self-response rates locally and nationally plus created a template for future outreach efforts and provided a better understanding of the RPC's role in the community -- all during a global pandemic.

Advancing Diversity and Social Change Award (new for 2021)


This new award for 2021 highlights a creative, temporary, flexible space for the Austin neighborhood. The planning process included robust community engagement and empowered the community throughout its construction and future programming.

Healthy and Active Community Award

Northern Lakeshore Trail Connectivity Plan

This well organized, visual plan has an eye towards ease of implementation for municipalities as well as providing evidence of items already implemented.

Student Project Award

Connecting People to Power: South Shore Energy Plan

This bold and innovative way of looking at "energy" sets a strong precedent for things that people used to think were beyond their control.


Join these Award Winners at the 2021 APA-IL State Conference

Award winning plans will be recognized during the 2021 Awards Program at this year's State Conference in Normal, IL:

  • 10/6/21 @ 4:30 - 5:30 PM Awards Ceremony

  • 10/6/21 @ 5:30 - 7:30 PM Awards Reception & Exhibitors Meet and Greet

Bloomington-Normal Marriott

Normal, IL #APAIL21

The 2021 Awards Program is complimentary to all 2021 State Conference attendees. Online conference registration ends on October 5, 2021 (in-person registration is welcome) so be sure to register now to save your seat at the program. After the Awards Program, mingle with award winners and exhibitors at the meet and greet immediately following the Awards. This reception joins you and other attendees, sponsors, and exhibitors.


About Us

The American Planning Association - Illinois Chapter (APA-IL) is Illinois' source for networking and professional development in the field of urban planning. The Illinois Chapter strives to enhance planning skills and knowledge through a number of activities including an annual Statewide conference, section meetings, planning awards, professional development, a newsletter, the website, and more. The Chapter exists as part of the larger American Planning Association. For more information about the APA-IL, visit Questions regarding the Awards Program should be directed to APA-IL Awards Chair, Tim Gustafson, AICP at


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