Neighbors of West Loop (NoWL) is a neighborhood organization formed by residents to bring together those in the West Loop who want to make a positive impact on our vibrant community. We are an accredited non-profit organization, supported exclusively by our membership and by the West Loop residents who volunteer their time to benefit the organization. The organization is founded on transparency and welcomes anyone who wants to work within a team to make a difference at the local level.
Our goal is to empower residents who wish to volunteer their time for the West Loop. We believe in transparency and the idea that every resident should have the opportunity to be informed and to be heard on issues that affect their community. Our mission includes the following:
- to advocate for responsible development
- to encourage the expansion of green space
- to inform residents about area happenings through meetings, community forums, and electronic communications
- to host community gatherings for all West Loop residents
- to connect residents with their elected representatives
We draw from people who are already involved with local CAPS programs, Park Advisory Councils, local school councils, condo board members, other area associations, and residents looking to make a difference. If you’re involved in any of these organizations, we encourage you to contact Neighbors of West Loop.
What is the West Loop?
The boundaries of Neighbors of West Loop run from Grand Avenue on the north to I-290 on the south, and from Ashland/Ogden on the west to the Chicago River on the east. There are many distinct neighborhoods that exist within these boundaries, including, but not limited to:
- Fulton River District
- West Loop Gate
- Fulton Market
- Randolph Row
- Madison Corridor
There are four Chicago Wards that exist within the Neighbors of West Loop boundaries:
- 42nd Ward: Alderman Reilly
- 25th Ward: Alderman Solis
- 27th Ward: Alderman Burnett
- 28th Ward: Alderman Ervin
There are five Chicago parks that exist within the Neighbors of West Loop boundaries:
- Skinner Park
- Bartelme Park
- Union Park
- Heritage Green Park
- Fulton River Park
NOWL began as an informal gathering of residents who were interested in working together for their community. Over time, NOWL also began working with members of both the West Loop Residents Association (WLRA) and the Fulton River District Association (FRDA).
In January 2013, we made it official and established a board and followed up by hosting a formal launch event in October of that year. This gathering was attended by over a hundred area residents as well as representatives and/or aldermen from the 25th, 27th, 28th and 42nd Wards as well as the 12th District Police.
Because of all of the overlapping of services, events, and concerns that residents in the greater West Loop area share, in January 2014 the FRDA merged with NOWL. This has helped to increase the manpower of the group, as well as expand our area of influence into the 42nd Ward and 1st District Police.
We use operating funds to further the organization’s mission and goals, including:
- Enhancing residents’ abilities to communicate with each other and with agencies, Chicago political groups and elected officials, other community organizations, and businesses that are involved in the West Loop area.
- Creating events and meetings to inform and/or entertain West Loop residents. Ward meetings are designed to allow residents an opportunity to debate and define a unifying voice so that they might effectively communicate with their designated Alderman’s office.
- Supporting local philanthropic groups and causes impacting residents of the West Loop.
To enhance the quality of life for residents and neighbors of Chicago’s greater West Loop Community. We bring together those who want to collaborate in order to improve our vibrant neighborhoods.
How to Get Involved
Residents who want to get involved in Neighbors of West Loop have a number of ways to do so based on their desires, passions and abilities. In June, 2016, we unveiled our membership structure to help support our volunteer efforts.
Subscribing to the Neighbors of West Loop email list affords individuals an opportunity to stay informed on a number of topics. Subscribers can indicate the frequency with which to receive NoWL email newsletters, as well as notifications on specific topics or events. Ward Committees are designed to localize efforts by geography, and Passion Committees are designed to share best practices for specific causes within the West Loop.