Juan-Pablo Velez is a freelance data journalist, formerly of the Chicago News Cooperative.
Small Steps in a Food Desert
Mayor Emanuel has promised to halve Chicago's food deserts — neighborhoods without healthy food outlets — by the end of his first term. Even as he pushes grocery chains to open stores in underserved communities, his administration is taking another tack: persuading corner stores, seen by some as a part of the food-desert problem, to sell fresh fruits and vegetables.
Pantries Face Shuttering if Donations Keep Dropping
With hunger at an all-time high, Chicago's food pantries are feeling the pinch of federal food cuts.
The Geography of Hunger (MAP)
Interactive map of food insecurity in Chicago neighborhoods.
TIF Aided Public and Private Projects Almost Evenly, Analysis Shows
Part 1 of TIF series: A six-month-long investigation by the Chicago News Cooperative reveals for the first time how former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley spent $1.7 billion in taxpayer dollars across the city's Tax Increment Financing districts, his administration's controversial economic development program.
TIF May Need a Boost in Poor Neighborhoods
Part 2 of TIF Series: Chicago's TIF districts are supposed to spur development in blighted areas. But can City Hall's primary development tool really reverse decades of economic decline and physical decay in the city's poorest neighborhoods?
Breaking Down Chicago's TIF District Spending (GRAPHICS)
Maps and graphics dissecting Chicago's TIF districts.
Analysis of C.T.A. Data Reveals No Bias
Data-driven analysis of Chicago transit cuts.
Shared Workspace Back to Future
Hidden in a workaday warehouse Chicago's North Side, a community of tinkerers has sprouted around a dying art: making stuff with your hands.
An Unusual Library Finds a New Home
"On a recent Saturday afternoon in Humboldt Park, a small band of volunteers scrambled to put the finishing touches on their library’s new home — the sixth in as many years for the Read/Write Library, Chicago’s largest depository of grass-roots printed materials."