Today is a big day in Chicago. WBEZ, the NPR affiliate in Chicago featured the RenGen on its 848 morning magazine show. Correspondent Gabriel Spitzer interviewed me and invited listeners to the launch event for RenGen tonight at the Chicago Architecture Foundation, hosted by the Chicago Loop Alliance.
I resisted naming Chicago a RenGen City. First of all–I live here! I can hardly be objective about it. But my research team insisted. It met all the criteria: good intellectual/creative infrastructure, green initiatives, density, circulatory system to move people and ideas around and the sense of “civitas” a Latin term for a well-run city where residents are friendly and happy. My researchers (not from Chicago) thought the Windy City had great mojo. But the main thing–the number one criterion the City has in spades is catalytic personalities. People who take risks, find supporters, build coalitions and make extraordinary things happen. A stroll through Millenium Park says it all.
To honor the launch, Brandy Agerbeck, one of Chicago’s young RenGenners and catalytic personalities (she is a don of the Chicago Craft Mafia) has graphically mapped the main themes of RenGen theory. I am honored. She did the same for Al Gore and Thomas Friedman. They liked their’s, too.