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About the ChicagoRivers Demonstration Project
Contact Information
Principal Investigators
Table of Contents - detailed
Table of Contents - Major sections

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FRONT COVER: Although a natural phenomenon (more or less), Chicago’s waterways are much about people—those who live, work or play along its varied shores. These are the people who will—through care and common visions—determine the future of this great waterway. Views of the river and its people overlay a visitors map of the City and the main branch of the Chicago River. Clockwise from upper right, aerial view of Lake Michigan, the Chicago River and the City of Chicago (photograph by Richard E. Carter); North Mayfair neighborhood volunteers planting the Gompers Park wetlands along the North Branch of the Chicago River (courtesy of Chicago Park District); Glenbrook North High School students monitoring the health of area rivers (courtesy of Mike Piskel); and Urban Canoe Adventures (U-CAN) river guide trainees practicing their newly-acquired canoe skills (courtesy of Friends of the Chicago River).

TITLE PAGE: Residents participating in small focus groups (Chapter 2, Nearby Neighborhood Residents’ Images and Perceptions of the River) were asked to express their feelings of the river through crayon drawings. The drawing shown characterizes a participant’s impression of the Chicago River ("Main Branch") by depicting sailboats, bascule (movable) bridges and high-rise architecture.

OBTAINING COPIES OF THIS REPORT:  To obtain a copy of the published report contact the National Park Service.

National Park Service
77 West Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60604

phone:  (312) 886-1437
fax:  (312) 886-7804


This is a publication of the ChicagoRivers Demonstration Project, a national model for the enhancement of urban waterways. It is a collaborative effort directed by the Friends of the Chicago River and the National Park Service, Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program.

ChicagoRivers Demonstration Project

Friends of the Chicago River

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago

National Park Service, Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program

Urban Resources Partnership of Chicago

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Chicago District

USDA Forest Service, North Central Research Station

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Chicago Metro Wetlands Office

Friends40.gif (2908 bytes)Friends of the Chicago River is the only non-profit organization dedicated solely to the protection and improvement of the Chicago River. The organization has become the single most influential voice for realizing the potential of the river’s many resources. Since its inception in 1979, the Friends of the Chicago River has played a significant role in policy and planning for the promotion of public access and improvements to the river.

Npslogo30.gif (2625 bytes)The National Park Service, through its Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program, is responsible for developing national policies and programs concerning the conservation of the nation’s river and trail resources. The Service also helps local communities and organizations create conservation plans for the development and protection of greenways, river corridors, and open space areas outside of the national parks.

Gobster, Paul H., and Lynne M. Westphal, Editors. 1998. People and the River: Perception and Use of Chicago Waterways for Recreation. (Chicago Rivers Demonstration Project Report, 192 p.) Milwaukee, WI: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program.

Published by the National Park Service, Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 1998.

Publication design and copy preparation by Graphic Works, Atlanta, Georgia.

Printed by Alpha Beta Press, Inc., Orland Park, Illinois.

The National Park Service, Department of the Interior is an equal opportunity agency and offers all persons the benefits of participating in each of its programs and competing in all areas of employment regardless of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, handicap, marital status, sexual orientation or other non-merit factors.

Principal Investigators and Volume Editors

Paul H. Gobster
Lynne M. Westphal
USDA Forest Service
North Central Research Station
845 Chicago Avenue, Suite 225
Evanston, Illinois  60202


Charles Nilon
Scott Huckstep
University of Missouri-Columbia

Dan Stolze
Metro Chicago Information Center

Tingwei Zhang
University of Illinois-Chicago

Joan M. O'Shaughnessy
Chicago Botanic Garden

ChicagoRivers Demonstration Project

Project Director
Wink Hastings
National Park Service


   USDA Forest Service at

USDA Forest Service, National Headquarters

North Central Research Station
1992 Folwell Ave., St. Paul, MN 55108
(651) 649-5000  fax: (651) 649-5285

All contents are in the public domain.

Please credit the North Central Research Station
if you copy or reproduce material from this page.

Last modified on Wednesday, February 18, 2004
by  Sharon Hobrla