Chicago Cityscape's first lunch break update was 4/14/22

The recorded video is live

After creating 12 new features in 2022 Q1, we decided it would be good to walk through some of them in a live demonstration. Here's our agenda for the first "lunch break update" (new name is pending):

  1. 5 mins - Everyone introduces themselves
  2. 10 mins - Talk about the ARO 2021 and how the map is integrated in Cityscape.
  3. 20 mins - Demonstrate three of the 12 new features: ShareLink, Proposed TIF-funded projects, and Businesses Snapshot
  4. 10 mins - Highlight a case study from one of our members
  5. 10 mins - live Q&A

Thank you to those who attended! This was our first time doing a live, public demonstration and we loved the discussions. 

Watch the edited recording, which is 34 minutes long. Watch this video if you want to...(skip ahead to this timestamp to watch just that portion)

  • understand Chicago Cityscape's mission (2:09)
  • see how Chicago Cityscape helps developers understand a property's ARO requirements (3:15)
  • find property in specific ARO areas (8:44) (also, there was a mention about our draft "ARO Matrix", but that was not shown in the demonstration)
  • use the new "ShareLink" feature to share *your* level of access to non-members (like your friends or colleagues) (10:36)
  • know which types of businesses are concentrated in a given area (17:05)
  • compare the number of licensed businesses between two areas (21:35)
  • peruse upcoming infrastructure and construction projects that will be partially funded by TIF (23:10)
  • Question: How do you draw a Personal Place? (32:03)

12 features for spring 2022

Chicago Cityscape never stops upgrading. We’ve heard valuable feedback from our members and Data Equity Cohort participants about data and new solutions that needed to be added to the platform. This is the first regularly occurring quarterly newsletter about new Chicago Cityscape improvements — there’s something for everyone.

We’ll also be demonstrating these features in a live webinar on Thursday, April 14, called “Lunch Break Update with Chicago Cityscape”. RSVP is required in order to get the Zoom link.

1. Share your access to non-members (new)

Members of the Real Estate Pro and Enterprise tiers can share their access, temporarily, with colleagues and clients. ShareLink currently works on Address Snapshot and Place Snapshot only.

Screenshot showing the “ShareLink” for a Place Snapshot.

Members can copy the link and share it with anyone. Recipients will need to create a free Cityscape account and they’ll have 7 days of access starting when the link was copied by the Cityscape member.

How to use it: Go to any Address or Place Snapshot and look for the “Share a link” section below the names of either snapshot. Copy the link and share!

Read about the other 11 improvements

Landmarks maps revamped

Chicago Cityscape has revamped how to find landmarks. Previously, you could only find landmarks, landmark districts, and National Register of Historic Places if those overlapped the address or Place you were looking up. 

Now, Address Snapshot and Place Snapshot have dedicated sections for finding overlapping and nearby landmarks, landmark districts, and National Register of Historic Places. The Chicago Historic Resources Survey remains a separate section.

screenshot of a map and data table showing landmarks in South Lawndale

Watch the 90 second video below to learn about the new map and data table that combines all three landmark types into one.


Additionally, we've rewritten our "Determine the historic status of a building in Chicago" Knowledge Base article to instruct members on how to use the new landmarks maps and refer readers to the relevant regulations of a landmarked building or building in a landmark district.

Cityscape now has six years of property sales data

With our recent integration of 2021 Q4 data, Chicago Cityscape now has information about property sales in Cook County from 2016 to 2021. That's 725,542 transactions over six years!

In Chicago, there were 75,492 transactions recorded in 2021, which is a 63.7 percent increase over the 46,122 transactions recorded in 2020. 

A chart showing the big change in property transactions in Chicago between 2020 and 2021

What can you do with property sales information on Cityscape? A lot. Here are some tips:

  • In Place Snapshot (think ZIP code or a personally-drawn boundary), you can locate sales comps and find the names of the most prolific buyers and sellers. 
  • In Address Snapshot, you can find all of the properties that sold within a couple of blocks. 
  • In Lending & Investment Snapshot, showcase the transactions in automatically generated charts, for any of the thousands of Places we have in Cook County (see screenshot below). 

a chart of property sales in the Albany Park community area


Cityscape launches new real-time Chicago development map

In preparation for a redesigned homepage, Chicago Cityscape has moved its longstanding real-time development map to a new dedicated, full-screen page

We've also enhanced the map – by showing more developments in more places – and added a legend to explain what each color marker means. 

Screenshot of a portion of the map showing Proposed Projects locations and New Construction locations.

The real-time Chicago development is updated daily, and sometimes more than once a day, and it shows proposed projects, projects that are significant on a citywide or neighborhood level, new construction projects worth $500,000 or more, and renovation projects worth $100,000 or more.

Access the real-time development map now

a zoomed out view showing a large portion of the city and the many developments happening.

The legend below shows the the four development categories and their respective markers.

image of a legend that explains the different markers on the new development map


Cityscape’s Top 12 stories in 2021

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