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Our rivers need us, just as we need them.
Our great rivers can rejuvenate communities and ecosystems, connect us to nature and build our economy. Our great rivers can be inviting, productive and living. That's your vision, Chicago.
Kate Joyce Studio
They need property owners, business leaders, elected officials, real estate developers, philanthropists, teachers, students, paddlers, boat captains, crane operators, advocates and artists to work toward our vision for the future of Our Great Rivers. We need water, solace, movement, nature, and places to connect with each other and ourselves. For too long, these bonds between our rivers and ourselves have been broken. Thanks to a relative few tireless advocates and resource managers, driven by their commitment to the potential of our rivers, we have begun to mend past and present transgressions. We have created truly great new spaces and experiences along our rivers that give us all reason to strive for more. To go the rest of the way, to restore the bonds between us and our great rivers, we need you—we need all of us.
Yes, government will need to lead on activities such as ending combined sewer overflows, reinvigorating sustainable riverfront productivity, even just putting signs on bridges. But the onus is on everyone, from local residents to business leaders, philanthropy to government, to advocate, ensure sufficient revenues, and hold ourselves and our elected officials accountable. This simply will not happen without persistence, drive, enthusiasm and a shared belief that we can build a future that is better than the present.
So join us.
Make the Chicago, Calumet and Des Plaines your rivers—collectively, our great rivers—by shaping their future.
How to move forward