From the CEO

Hitting our stride

The sun is shining longer and beautiful new things are starting to grow which can only mean one thing — spring is here! Across the IMD, all our winter plans are taking root with new hotels, restaurants, fundraisers and excitement everywhere we look.

April is Earth Month, so we’re thinking green and kicking it off by hosting two electronics recycling events at the IMDC office. To learn more or view a flyer to share with your organization or community, click here. Applications are also now open for our 2024 summer paid internship position, a one-of-a-kind learning opportunity for an eager young mind to get hands-on learning experience in the IMD, the largest most diverse urban medical district in the nation. To learn more, including how to apply, or view a flyer to share with your community, click here.

From left: Kate Schellinger, Nicole Vahl, CEO and Executive Director Allyson Hansen, Judy Salgado, Gina Oka, Jeanne Cotini, Karen Ewing. Not pictured: Commissioner Judy Frydland, Commissioner Eleanor Gorski, Commissioner Ann Kalayil.

On February 27, we took got a sneak peak of the Hampton by Hilton rising in the IMD Gateway and set to open later this year. We can’t wait to show more, but in the meantime, check out this view of downtown guests will enjoy! On March 6, we paid a visit to the new Crockett Cookies Food Venue on the first floor of the Hyatt Place IMD that was featured in the Chicago Tribune recently. They’re open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and can accept large orders for catering as well. Whether you have a taste for something sweet or savory, there’s something for everyone. On March 19, we celebrated Women’s History Month by shining a spotlight on the hard-working women that keep the IMD Commission running, and on Sunday, March 24 the IMD Run & Walk Group was proud to attend the 2024 Shamrock Shuffle for the first time. We participated in the shuffle and cheered on attendees that chilly morning with hot coffee and treats, and we hope to see all you shufflers again next year!

CEO and Executive Director Allyson Hansen with “Sandwich Queen” Tangela Nelson, one of the vendors in the new Crockett Cookies Food Venue inside Hyatt Place IMD.

On March 27, we were proud to announce our Bike and Pedestrian Safety Action Plan (BPSAP), the product of over a year of study and stakeholder engagement that will guide us as we work to improve the safety of our streets. The plan features an existing conditions report with traffic data, recommends improvements to IMD bike and pedestrian infrastructure (including a toolbox of items already available), and elevates five transformative projects that will reshape key intersections in the IMD with a focus on pedestrian safety. To read the plan, or to watch a short video about the five transformative projects, click here. We will continue to share more updates related to the BPSAP as we work to implement its recommendations over the coming years.

IMD Run & Walk Group at the 2024 Shamrock Shuffle.

It’s less than 150 days until Chicago hosts the 2024 Democratic National Convention at the United Center just north of the IMD. Chicago and the IMD will welcome thousands of new journalists, delegates, and dignitaries from around the world that week, and our team has been hard at work since last year developing ways the IMD and our partners can leave visitors with a positive lasting impression. We’re getting closer to sharing our DNC plans, and I hope you’re as excited as we are when you see them. We’re also working behind the scenes to ensure the free flow of traffic for emergency vehicles so the IMD can continue to function as a critical zone for Chicagoans throughout convention week.

Enjoy reading the rest of this issue and hearing more about the great work of the IMDC and our partners. I remain as inspired as ever to be a part of the IMD community and look forward to seeing all the great things your organizations accomplish this year. As always, please remember to shop local and support our partners doing great work in and around the IMD, and buy a ticket to one of the gala fundraisers below. Happy Mother’s Day, Happy Memorial Day and I’ll see you at a run and walk soon!


Allyson Hansen

CEO and Executive Director


New in the IMD

Bike and Pedestrian Safety Action Plan announced



On March 27, we were proud to announce our Bike and Pedestrian Safety Action Plan (BPSAP), a significant milestone in our commitment to improving safety for our 90,000 daily visitors whether they walk, bike, or roll. The plan, when implemented, will transform key intersections in the IMD, prioritizing accessibility while reducing traffic accidents and fatalities.

“Ensuring the safety of IMD workers, patients, and residents is our top priority,” said IMDC CEO and Executive Director Allyson Hansen. “The IMD’s high concentration of critical healthcare infrastructure — as well as new residential housing, schools, retail, restaurant,  and hospitality developments have added new urgency to improving our increasingly busy streets with a focus on pedestrian safety. A safer IMD will not only benefit our immediate community, but also extends to all Chicagoans who rely on our healthcare systems for care or employment, look to our nonprofits for aid, attend our educational institutions, or choose to call the IMD home. I look forward to working with our partners at the city, county, and state to implement the recommendations of the plan.”

This Bike and Pedestrian Safety Action Plan was led by Sam Schwartz, with support from R.M. Chin & Associates and Site Design Group and included IMD stakeholder and community engagement. Funding was provided by Invest in Cook, a grant program from the Cook County Department of Transportation and Highways (DoTH). The plan includes:

  • Transformative projects;
  • Recommendations for improved bike and pedestrian infrastructure;
  • A toolbox of items already available to improve traffic safety;
  • An existing condition report with past and pending infrastructure projects; and
  • Traffic data and strategies for implementation.


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Illinois Medical District (@imdchicago)

To read or download the BPSAP, click here.

To watch what people have been saying about the BPSAP in the news, click here.

To read an article about the BPSAP from Block Club Chicago, click here.

To read the release, click here.


Now hiring 2024 summer paid intern


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Illinois Medical District (@imdchicago)

We are looking for a highly motivated undergraduate student to support IMDC staff on projects in accounting, communications, health/science, IT, legal, marketing, real estate and operations. The goal of this internship is to provide relevant and applicable career exposure and give the student opportunities to engage with various agencies working in and around the Illinois Medical District.


  • Currently enrolled in an associate or bachelor’s degree program
  • Interest in urban development, healthcare, finance, or related fields
  • S. citizen, permanent resident, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) status
  • Reside in one of the following zip codes: 60605, 60607, 60608, 60609, 60612, 60616, 60620, 60621, 60622, 60623, 60624, 60629, 60632, 60636, 60639, 60641, 60642, 60644, 60647, 60651, 60652, 60661

Compensation and Schedule

  • Hours: 20 hrs/week
  • Start Date: June 3, 2024
  • Duration: 8 weeks
  • Compensation: $18-$21/hr dependent on experience
  • Location: 2100 W Harrison St, Chicago, IL, 60612 (parking provided)

Interested candidates should apply by Friday, April 15.

To view or download a flyer to share with your community, including how to apply, click here.

To share the social posts with your friends, click below:

For any questions, please email Nicole Vahl at


April electronics recycling events


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Illinois Medical District (@imdchicago)

Do you have old technology to get rid of? Donate them to be refurbished and provided to low-income individuals and families in need!

We’ve partnered with PCs for People for two electronics recycling events at our office in the month of April.


Tuesday, April 9 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Wednesday, April 17 from 3:30 – 6:30 p.m.


Illinois Medical District Commission

2100 W Harrison St, Chicago IL 60612

Please drop items off inside the front lobby of our building not on the sidewalk.

We Accept

  • Desktop or laptop computers
  • Phones
  • TVs and monitors (no CRTs)
  • Computer accessories like keyboards, mice, or speakers Printers
  • Hard drives and other computer parts
  • Power cords and cables
  • Servers and networking equipment

Items can be in any condition (new, used, broken).

We Do Not Accept

  • Household appliances (including microwaves, refrigerators, and vacuums)
  • Car batteries
  • CRT (tube) TVs and monitors
  • Copiers
  • Anything containing chemicals, fossil fuels, bio waste, oil, liquids, powders, asbestos, or freon

PCs for People is a nonprofit and national leader in IT Asset Disposition (ITAD) offering certified data destruction and recycling services that have benefited over 500,000 people, redistributed 267,000 refurbished devices, recycled over 9 million pounds of e-waste, and helped over 77,000 homes connect to the internet.

Recycled computers are refurbished and distributed back into the community to support equal access to technology for low-income families, their warehouses employee adults from diverse backgrounds and with disabilities, and if items are not reusable they recycle every component.

To view or download a flyer to share with your community, click here.

To share the social posts with your friends, click below:

For any questions, please email Nicole Vahl at


News from around the IMD

Apply Now: Cook County Health is awarding $44M in grant funding


Cook County Health is awarding $44M in grant funding to support community organizations across the region in expanding behavioral health services and programs.

This opportunity is intended to fund community health centers, community-based organizations (CBOs), education agencies, faith-based organizations, federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) serving Cook County. The Cook County Health Office of Behavioral Health’s Impact Fund and community initiatives are committed to building resilient communities that can adapt, recover, and thrive in the midst of life’s challenges through innovative and integrated solutions that bridge gaps in prevention, treatment, and support for mental health and substance use.

The deadline to apply is Wednesday, April 17.

To learn more or apply, click here.

Guest House 25th Anniversary Gala Fundraiser


Guest House is celebrating their 25th Anniversary, and to honor this milestone, they are hosting a 25th Anniversary Gala “The House Always Wins 2024” — featuring celebrity special guests Mariann Aalda, Tim Kazurinsky, and mistress of ceremonies Lisa Fielding, WBBM News Radio Anchor. All attendees will enjoy Carnivale’s delicious Latin cuisine, custom cocktails (including a Make Your Own Mojito Bar), live entertainment, magic, and raffle!

The Guest House is a non-profit organization that provides temporary accommodation to medical patients, their family members, and military veterans in Chicago. They welcome patients of all ages and medical conditions, and no qualified guest is turned away for an inability to pay (there is no cost for military veterans).


Monday, April 15 from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.

VIP reception starts at 5:00 p.m.


Carnivale Restaurant

702 W. Fulton Market St, Chicago, IL 60661

To learn more or register, click here.

Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center 9th Annual Luminary Award Dinner


Join ChicagoCAC during Child Abuse Prevention Month for their 9th Annual Luminary Award Dinner, celebrating and supporting ChicagoCAC’s work investigating abuse, advocating for children and families, educating the community about prevention, and restoring the lives of children impacted by sexual abuse and other trauma.

The Luminary Award Dinner hosts 400 Chicago area professionals, community leaders, and other friends of ChicagoCAC who come together to celebrate and support their mission and vision.


Wednesday, April 24 at 6:00 p.m.

Program, Dinner, Live & Silent Auctions, and Paddle Raise to follow


Four Seasons Hotel Chicago

120 E Delaware Pl, Chicago, IL 60611

To learn more or register, click here.

Bright Horizons Artsy Thursdays


Smocks on! Join Bright Horizons IMD and let’s get creative on April 11.

You and your child are invited to a day full of hands-on art activities. Unleash your inner artist and connect with other families as we celebrate NAEYC’s Week of the Young Child on Artsy Thursday.

To learn more, click here.

Hampton Inn & Suites IMD Opening 2024


The IMD is getting a new hotel this year — the Hampton Inn & Suites Chicago Medical District is set to open its doors in early 2024, supporting the bustling IMD while welcoming new guests comfort and convenience.

With pet-friendly accommodations, complimentary breakfast, spacious parking, high-speed Wi-Fi, and an inviting indoor pool, you’re sure to enjoy your stay.

Follow them on Instagram to stay in the loop as they get close to opening their doors.

Urban Autism Solutions Growing Solutions Farm hiring part-time grower


If working the soil while making an impact sounds like a great way to spend the upcoming season, you’ll love being part of the team at Growing Solutions Farm as a Part-time Grower.

Compensation and Schedule

  • Hours: 24 hrs/week
  • Start Date: May 2024
  • Duration: 6 months
  • Compensation: $16.80/hr
  • Location: 2200 W Campbell Park Dr, Chicago, IL 60612

To learn more, including how to apply, click here.