The Urban Need & Opportunity

While our ethnic communities are geographically close to downtown, they often experience economic and social disparities. Bridging this gap is one of the most important challenges facing America today. Social programs alone don’t produce results. We must invest in creating sound economic foundations for our urban communities.

Our initiatives are designed to address the specific needs and challenges facing Bronzeville residents. They highlight the unique assets and historical attributes of our community. We provide job opportunities to residents, quality goods and services for existing and new residents, and unique events and attractions to encourage visitors. Through these initiatives, Build Bronzeville helps to stabilize our communities, facilitate their integration with the broader region, and improve the quality of life for community members.

Bronzeville Incubator

The Incubator brings together ambitious first and second-stage entrepreneurs in the culinary, creative, and sustainability industries who share a commitment to community development and who value being a part of an enterprise wherein peers and mentors, education, and networking in these arenas converge. Entrepreneurs can learn from experts, use furnished resources, and network with one another while building their own thriving business.

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Bronzeville Cookin’

Bronzeville Cookin' Restaurant Row is a unique dining destination celebrating the cuisines, cultures, and communities of peoples of African descent at 51st Street and the CTA Green Line. 4 locally-owned restaurants share a turn-of-the-century building in the heart of the historic Bronzeville community. Each venue offers a different aspect of Black cuisine, one of the world’s richest.

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Boxville is a seasonal marketplace open Wednesday afternoons, from 4-7 p.m, and Sundays from 12-4pm. Shipping containers become storefronts and a bike repair shops. Local and regional businesses set up shop to vend their wares, from fresh and prepared foods to clothing and jewelry. Music from the disc jockey fills the marketplace and the Neighborhood Square turns into a plaza filled with regulars and curious passersby.

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The Forum

When renovations are complete, The Forum will feature performing arts, entertainment, commerce, and social engagement. After a four-decade closure, this historic venue that once welcomed performers like Nat King Cole will become the cornerstone for local life in Bronzeville, and once again spark social, political, and economic development.

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Neighborhood Beautification & Engagement

Environmental improvements include initiatives for outdoor beautification like the Bronzeville Community Garden, located on the southeast corner of 51st and Calumet, 51st Street Trees, garden and bike paths, and the Wall of Peace and Love. In addition, the creation of functional green space in Green Line Farms and Greenhouse Box are sources for fresh, healthy foods for community residents and restaurant goers.

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It takes a commitment from and collaboration between community members, the business sector, government municipalities, and charitable foundations to bring each new concept to life. Our partners in revitalization are critical to Build Bronzeville’s success. Learn how you can help.