Investigating Social Impact of Large-Scale Urban Change

Greg Borzo | Arete
Photo Credit: 
Lloyd DeGrane

Not far from the University of Chicago’s historic campus, a new community is arising on the site of what was once America’s largest steel mill. Called Lakeside, the development will mix residential, commercial and retail space in a “model community for a green, 21st century lifestyle.” But how will the huge 600-acre site be developed and how will it affect the surrounding community?

Although it could take decades to fully build out Lakeside, the site is extremely attractive and many signs point to imminent development. U.S. Steel and its developers could break ground on the project by the end of 2013. Already, the relocation of Lake Shore Drive through the area is nearly complete, which means that significant changes to the surrounding community are in the offing.

Kathleen Cagney, associate professor of sociology and health studies and director or the Population Research Center at NORC and the University of Chicago, is watching Lakeside closely. Her research interests include the urban social context; neighborhoods; race and ethnic differences in access to health care and long-term care; and health status assessment and measurement.

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