The University and the Chicago
Park District revealed the official Midway Plaisance master
plan in April; in May the Park District board approved the first
project, an Olympic-size ice rink. As suggested in the preliminary
design ("Big ideas brewing in proposed Midway master plan,"
December/99), the final plan includes the new skating rink,
warming house, and winter garden; a children's playground; and
an urban horticultural center with demonstration gardens.
also calls for making the Midway a more usable park by creating
a drainage system for the playing fields; adding pedestrian-friendly
lighting; and providing restrooms, water fountains, and more
trash receptacles. The Chicago Department of Transportation
has been asked to suggest techniques for calming the boulevard's
steady east-west traffic flow, and the Metra viaduct will be
repainted and designed as a formal Midway entrance.
the park, the slopes leading down to its center panels will
be planted with 30,000 to 40,000 flowers. Decorative pedestrian
bridges will be built at major intersections.
the University's vice president for community affairs, says
the skating rink and warming house, winter garden, slope planting,
field improvements, and traffic assessments are planned for
the next two years. Within the next five years, he expects that
work will begin on the horticultural center, the gardens will
be finished, lighting will be added, the viaduct will be improved,
and some of the pedestrian bridges will have been built.
of the changes is estimated at $20 million. According to Arnold
Randall, Chicago Park district southeast regional manager, the
Park District and the University will split the cost of the
$4 million skating rink and warming house. The Park District
and other public agencies will fund another $8 million of the
project, with the U of C and private donors providing the rest.
the long term--are a fountain at the east entrance of the Midway,
a reflecting pool by the Masaryk statue, a reading garden at
the base of the Linné statue, and a health and healing garden
to the south of the Hospitals. For more information: www.uchicago.edu/docs/mp-site/construction/plaisance/plai-index.html.
departs for coast
six months after the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation and the National
Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases granted $151.5
million to research teams led by U of C professor Jeffrey Bluestone
("U of C teams head national diabetes research projects," December/99),
the immunologist announced that he was leaving the University
to join the University of California at San Francisco. Although
$18 million of the U of C's $30-million increase in NIH grants
from 1998 to 1999 was earmarked for Bluestone's projects, only
a few million stayed at Chicago; the rest went to other medical
centers that are participants in his studies.
Bluestone's departure, the Chicago Tribune remarked on
a "brain drain" in the Biological Sciences Division: Bluestone,
who chairs the Committee on Immunology and heads the Ben May
Institute for Cancer Research, was the fourth prominent scientist
in two years to leave the University for institutions on the
east and west coasts.
dean of biological sciences and vice president for medical affairs,
argues otherwise, pointing to an influx of talent. In the past
few years, 13 new biological sciences department chairs--primarily
from coastal institutions such as Johns Hopkins and Genentech--have
joined the faculty, as well as 12 senior professors. --E.C.