For those of you in the Chicago area who are interested, there is a symposium discussing the revitalization of Chicago's suburban downtowns on Dec 1st. Here's the info:

Suburban Chicago Goes Urban: Trends & Pitfalls of the Retail Revolution


Don't miss the annual symposium hosted by The Real Estate Center and the Chaddick Institute and sponsored by the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC).

Where: Harris Bank Auditorium 115 South LaSalle, 8th floor
When: Thursday, December 1, 2005 8:30am-12:00pm (check-in opens at 7:30am)
Who: City planners, developers, brokers, retailers, market analysts and anyone interested in main street retail development.

Registration Fee: $125 before November 28th


Include an additional $60 and join the speakers for lunch directly following the program in the Executive Dining Room at Harris Bank. The lunchroom capacity is limited to 50 people and reservations are accepted on a first come, first served basis.

Registration Deadline is November 28th (late registrants will be charged a $75 late fee).

Introduction:
The topic, Suburban Chicago Goes Urban, will focus on converging national trends that are making street retail development the hottest new market for developers and retailers. Suburban cities, towns, and villages are recognizing that retail is the key driver for downtown redevelopment--a phenomenon that poses both great opportunities and risks for all involved. This seminar will identify the needs of and issues facing: city planners, developers, brokers, retailers and market analysts and suggest ways in which they can work together to take advantage of this powerful economic opportunity awaiting them.

Symposium Structure:
The symposium will provide five different perspectives of the retail development process. Individual speakers representing each major facet of the planning and development process will present their viewpoints on key issues. Following each presentation, a moderator will engage the audience in a lively discussion.

Guest speakers include (in order of appearance)

Carol Gies, President, 4Insights, Inc.
Carol has 25 years of experience as head of marketing, planning and research for brand retailers, restaurants and shopping centers. Her firm has recently completed an economic impact study of downtown retail for the City of Naperville that sheds new light on how retail impacts communities beyond just tax dollars.

Ray Moller, Director of Economic Development, City of Elgin, IL
Elgin has been featured in both trade and consumer media as the model for forward planning for Downtown redevelopment and their downtown is “on fire” now. Ray has been guiding this process for over a decade.

John LaMotte, Principal, The Lakota Group
John is a city planner with 27 years of experience and expertise in land use planning, urban design and economic development. He has directed a wide range of corporate, commercial, industrial, institutional, mixed-use and community planning projects for private and public sector clients.

Peggy Blanchard, Principal of PF Blanchard
With 20 years on the municipal side, and recently head of Mid America's Municipal Services Division, Blanchard understands the relationship between the city's needs and the tenant and broker's objectives. She served as Community and Economic Development director for the cities of LaGrange, Highland Park, Downer's Grove and Barrington.

Bruno Bottarelli, Managing Partner of Marquette Development, Chicago
Founder of the Town Builders Collaborative, a consortium of developers, architects, designers, civic financiers, community advocates and trends specialists who work to redevelop live-work-play communities, he is currently partnering with the City of Lemont, in their redevelopment and retail planning process.

Bill Selonick, Vice President, Baum Realty
In addition to representing Washington Mutual in its astounding market rollout, Selonick has represented Panera Bread in more than 55 completed transactions, accounting personally for nearly 10% of Panera's national store count.

Allen Joffe Principal & Managing Broker, Baum Realty
Since 1993, Joffe has successfully negotiated and managed lease transactions for more than 40 clients, including JaredThe Galeeria of Jewelry, Morton's Restaurant Group, Omaha Steaks, Boston Market, McDonald's, Kay Jewelers and Ace Hardware.

Gregory Kirsch J.D., Principal, Baum Realty
Kirsch has completed over 50 transactions on behalf of Starbucks Coffee, 40 transactions for HealthSouth Physical therapy and over 180 transactions for Washington Mutual. Kirsch has exclusively represented FedEx Kindo's in the Chicago-Metro area and recently, Caribou Coffee retained him as their exclusive broker for the State of Illinois.

Joseph P. Schwieterman, Ph.D., Director of the Chaddick Institute for Metropolitan Development and professor of public service management at DePaul University
Prof. Schwieterman is well-known authority on transportation and land-use planning and is the author of several books on these topics. A regular guest on WBBM's Noon Business Hour and WBEZ's "848" program, Schwieterman hosts the Chaddick Institute's Technical Workshops on zoning and land-use planning.

The interactive format will insure significant audience participation and will be moderated by the Real Estate Center's Susanne Cannon and Chaddick Institute's Joe Schwieterman.