09 August 2015

UVNA Community Member of the Month: July 2015

Congratulations to Jon Komperda, our Community Member of the Month for July 2015

Jon, who lives in University Village Lofts, was nominated for his efforts to make our community a safer place to live. Early in July, while out walking his dogs, Jon noticed someone taking packages from a University Village townhouse. The person wasn't in any sort of uniform, so Jon looked around for a delivery vehicle and found nothing.

Instead of shrugging off this suspicious activity and going about his day, Jon went out of his way to not only take photos of the package thief, but he also stuck around and filed a report with the police. Upon sharing this with the community, it was discovered that packages have been disappearing from the townhouses for quite some time.

It's small efforts like these that make our community a safer place to live, and for that we are thanking and honoring Jon.

Thank you to Simone's for sponsoring this month's award. Jon will receive a gift certificate as his prize.

Have someone you'd like to nominate for the next month's prize? Let us know!

02 July 2015

June meetings overview

A neighborhood is not merely people and houses, but rather neighbors and homes. While it’s true that hundreds of people could live in an area and never know one another, it’s believed that knowing your next door neighbor, or the family down the street, or the coffee shop owner, strengthens a bond that builds a community of vested partners interested in keeping the community prosperous, safe and enjoyable.

That belief would lend itself to an idea that having a group of creative individuals, each supporting a shared desire to get to know their neighborhood, and get to the know their neighbors, would build new bonds, and strengthen relationships with our local business and community partners and be a forum for sharing information with one another. With that, a group of individuals convened a meeting to explore the possibility that University Village residents could focus on a set of common goals to improve the community. Born was the University Village Neighborhood Alliance (UVNA). And so it began!

The selection of directors for the newly formed UVNA has been established.

Antonio Gonnella has been named President. He brings to the group motivation to make our community and neighborhood thrive. He brings new perspective to ways in which our community can be brought together by involving our different Associations.

Erin Weinland has been named Vice President of Communication. She shares her enthusiasm with the UVNA by being a member of the University Village Townhome Board of Directors. She’s an established liaison to our community with a visible commitment to the betterment of the neighborhood in which we live.

Matthew Thor has been named VP of Sales & Marketing. He has spearheaded building a relationship with our local University Village businesses. He stepped in the role and immediately took to the streets, gaining sponsorship for our Community Member of the Month award. He believes the University Village neighborhood at large, in concert with our boundary communities like Little Italy and Pilsen, have much to offer and will continue to bloom if we come together as a group working toward shared goals.

Erin Thor has been named VP of Events and has discovered several of our neighbors share the same engagement and entertainment desires as she’s planning. She has an energetic series of fun events and ideas that embraces the feeling of “neighborhood.”

Donna Campbell has been named Secretary and has volunteered for various Chicago and Corporate events. Residing in University Village townhomes for a short 3 years, she believes that the sense of community is more powerful when we build strong bonds with our community. She’s inspired by the thoughtful and creative group of individuals who want to make the community bright, better for one another by one another.

Our first Board of Directors’ and Property Managers’ Meeting was held on June 16th.  Many of the 18 attendees were neighbors who are in volunteer positions in the various Associations. The meeting was also attended by the UIC Police, sharing information on their role within our community and the importance of communication. They have offered to be partners with the UVNA in making the neighborhood safer for the students, the families and the community at large.

Alderman Patrick Thompson also attended the meeting, sharing his accomplishments he and his office have achieved since being sworn in to duty. He has shared his intention to join in our mission to improve the community by being available to discuss the wards potential resources. He has committed to being a line of communication to University Village and its members on topics such as community development, safety and City of Chicago concerns (i.e., “rogue tickets”)

The community leaders comprised of Property Managers and Boards of Directors brought insightful ideas to the meeting. These ideas will move us together toward the same goal: improving our surroundings taking many members, many neighbors and instilling the feeling of “Community.” These ideas will flourish in the coming months benefiting everyone.

09 June 2015

UVNA Community Member of the Month: May 2015

Congratulations to Janet Cornelius, our Community Member of the Month for May 2015!

Janet, who lives in University Commons, was nominated for her volunteer work as co-chair of the Maxwell Street Community Garden. Founded in 2012, the Garden occupies a vacant lot at Blue Island and 13th and has plots maintained both by the community and by private donors.

Though future development of the area could potentially threaten the Garden, Janet has worked tirelessly to acquire grants from multiple foundations to help secure its future. She also hosts students from local schools to education them about gardening, as well as hosting several educational and fun (live music!) events in the Garden.

Thank you to Moxee for sponsoring this month's award. Janet will receive a gift certificate as her prize.

Have someone you'd like to nominate for the next month's prize? Let us know!

Busy June - UVNA meetings, World's largest block party, and more

Busy June for UVNA:
  • UVNA Board meeting with Alderman Thompson, UV HOA's leaders, and UICPD - 06/16 at 6:30pm at Powell's Bookstore.
  • UVNA events committee meeting - 06/18 at 7pm at Peet's coffee on Halsted st
  • UVNA Directors meeting with Alderman Solis - 06/19 at 1:45 pm at the City Hall Office
Old St. Patrick's church is hosting 2015 World's largest block party on 6/27 at UIC: www.worldslargestblockparty.com
The event used to be held at the old St. Pat's Church in the West Loop, and it has been around since 1980. 
More details on why the event was moved from the West Loop to University Village: click here

GazetteChicago.com posted an article about the vacant Union Street property:
Thompson to take a fresh look at Union Street property That's the site of the former Gethseman Church/German School, which was demolished early this year.

DNA info just posted a story on a possible new development in East Pilsen, 19th and Sanagamon, very close to UV: Developer plans 111 apartments

Lastly, are you looking for fun stuff to do in Chicago this summer?
Here is a very detailed list by thrillist.com: Every single Summer festival in Chicago.

29 May 2015

UVNA social events committee sign up

To all University Village residents:

Do you like planning events?
How about sharing ideas?
How about making new friends?

If you answered yes to any of the above, you should join the UVNA events committee!
We have some ideas in the works such as: summer bbq, dog meetup, dog pack walks, bar/restaurant crawl, and much more.
We are looking for volunteers to help with these events and more.

Are you interested? Please let us know via e-mail:


"Without a sense of caring, there can no be a sense of community" - Anthony J. D'Angelo

28 May 2015

UVNA Community Member of the Month - May

Exciting News!
ONLY A COUPLE DAYS LEFT to nominate your neighbors for the Inaugural University Village Neighborhood Alliance Community Member of the Month. 
The winner gets a $50 gift card to Moxee, and I'm sure everyone knows someone who's done something positive for the community. 

We've only received two nominations so far, so you've got a good chance to win!
And don't be shy about nominating yourself. Did something awesome for the community and nobody knows about it? We want to tell them about it.
Email your nominations to vpmarketing@uvnalliance.com, please!

27 May 2015

Pilsen Alliance Town Hall meeting, 06/04/2015 at 6pm

Hello Everyone,

Pilsen Alliance has scheduled a Town Hall meeting to discuss East Pilsen proposed development by PMG Windy City:
Pilsen moves forward by Chicago.Curbed.com
Developer plan 500 apartments for Pilsen by Crain's Chicago Business

Here is the proposed development site:

Here is a preliminary rendering of the project:

The meeting is scheduled for Thursday June 4th at 6 pm at Rudy Lozano Chicago Public Library:
Please visit Pilsen Alliance's Facebook page to accept the invitation to the meeting. 
UVNA is planning on attending the meeting, and we would love to hear your thoughts on this project (leave comments under this post).

We will see you there.

University Village Alliance is finally here

Hello Everyone,
Community leaders gathered at DeColores on May 1st 2015 with the intention to start a much needed neighborhood alliance for our awesome community. The meeting was a great success, and we formed the University Village Neighborhood Alliance (UVNA). 

In addition to forming the alliance, community leaders also elected the board of directors:

Tony Gonnella - President
Erin Wielan - Vice President of Communications
Erin Thor - Vice President of Events
Matthew Thor - Vice President of Marketing
Donna Campbell - Secretary
To find out more about each director please go to the "Directors" page

Lastly, UVNA's Purpose and Mission are the following:

To provide an environment to meet neighbors, exchange ideas, prioritize projects, propose solutions, and implement plans for the community. UVNA is concerned with issues that affect the quality of life in the community. Issues such as: education and schools, proposed residential and commercial development, zoning regulations, traffic and infrastructure improvements, as well as social activities and events that will strengthen the neighborhood.

To create an inclusive and welcoming community. 

We are currently working on completing the website, please join our mailing list (on the right-hand side of the web-page) to receive future announcements in your inbox.

This is an exciting time for our community, we can do great things together:
"Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success." - Henry Ford