The following are initiatives Alderwoman Anabel Abarca is in the process of introducing:
- Create an Education coalition in the ward of principals, parents, educators, and students to access resources and provide a direct connection to City Hall
- Creation of a Youth Council composed of students from all 12th Ward schools ages 14 and up to create programming for 12th Ward youth. This council will work directly with my office as an advisory group.
- Host events where local trade unions present to middle and high school students to introduce union apprenticeships and careers.
Currently, Alderwoman Anabel Abarca hosts:
- Weekly Ward Nights, in person, to ensure residents have a venue to discuss concerns directly with her.
- Weekly precinct walks for direct outreach to residents.
- Publicly available phone -(312) 772-5890 – number where residents can text concerns, comments, and issues. Quite often, it is Anabel responding!
- Support of the Accessory Dwelling Unit pilot program to increase housing density.
- Anabel has voted in favor of expansion of public transit in minority communities.
Anabel is working to bring:
- Protected bike lanes to the 12th Ward. Residents deserve safe bike lanes to travel to school, work, and areas in the community. As Chief of Staff, Anabel helped bring Divvy Bikes to the ward.
- Equitable Transit Oriented Development to encourage density.
- Bring back the McKinley Park Farmer’s Market and introduce a Brighton Park Farmer’s Market that will provide access to fresh produce and local goods.
Beginning February 2023, Participatory Budgeting will be implemented for all residents ages 14 and old. Residents can submit ideas and then vote on the proposals funded by Aldermanic Menu money. Details to come!
Developments in progress:
Rezoning of 35th Street Corridor. This will allow businesses to open without the cost of zoning changes.
Small Business Workshops aimed at small- and first-time business owners where they can receive assistance with paperwork, city hall questions, and resources.
Creation of a Business Incubator aimed at women and minority firms. Businesses would be able to develop amongst peers and access resources in a one-stop shop.
Beginning February 2023:
Creation of the 12th Ward Zoning Council comprised of homeowners, renters, businesses, students, educators, seniors, and land use experts that will review projects and provide guidance.
Currently, Alderwoman Anabel Abarca is bringing to following proactive approaches to public safety in the ward:
- Catalytic Converter Deterrent Events in conjunction with the 9th Police District. This is being offered to residents, at no cost, in order to deter catalytic converter theft.
- Permanent Expansion of ONE Summer Chicago jobs to youth. Anabel is partnering with local businesses to offer opportunities to local youth so that jobs are available closer to home.
- Neighborhood “Safety” Walks in areas known as hotspots.
- Assisting neighbors to develop “Block Clubs” and phone trees.
- Advocating for expansion of Crisis Support Units for crises that do not require police involvement.
As an asthmatic, Alderwoman Anabel Abarca knows the difficulties of living near a highway as well as a truck route. Anabel will work with developers and businesses to ensure they comply with existing regulations as well as provide transparency in their environmental remediation and mitigation efforts.
While working on her Master’s of Public Administration, Anabel focused on environmental proliferation of Superfund sites in minority communities. During law school, Anabel researched and wrote a paper on the failure of state agencies to notify the 12th Ward community during the construction of the MAT Asphalt plant.