The Burnham Plan Centennial - Bold Plans, Big Dreams

Program Partners


The Arlington Heights Memorial Library serves the 75,000 residents of the village of Arlington Heights providing services, programs and information that meet the needs of the community.  The library recently received the highest rating – 5 Stars – in a national ranking called “America’s Star Libraries” released by the Library Journal Index of Public Library Service and is the only single-facility library in Illinois to receive this prestigious recognition.

The library is pleased to host the Make Big Plans: Burnham's Vision of an American Metroplis exhibit, curated by the Newberry Library, from June 19 - December 31, 2009. Through the exhibit and related public programs we hope to boldly inspire and educate our community as we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 1909 Plan of Chicago and how it relates to the future of the greater Chicagoland area.

For more information about the Make Big Plans exhibit and the list of more than 60 venues throughout the Chicago metropolitan region at which it is on display, or to access the exhibit on-line, click here.


Partner Category: Public Agency

Centennial Activities

Sunday, September 20, 2009 2:00pm

Chicago as the Nation's Crossroads: Our Region's Transportation History and Future through Policy and Maps

Arlington Heights Memorial Library

James R. Akerman, The Newberry Library, an historian of maps and Joseph P. Schwieterman, DePaul University, a transportation planning expert, join forces to explore Daniel Burnham and Edward Bennett's treatment of transportation in the Plan of Chicago and to examine the region's role as the crossroads of America. Burnham and Bennett clearly understood Chicago's strategic location as a transportaion hub for the region and the nation, and their vision has profound implications for the city and region today. [MORE]

Sunday, July 19, 2009 2:00pm to 3:30pm

City Beautiful: Celebrating the Burnham Plan Centennial

Arlington Heights Memorial Library

Art Historian Jeff Mishur explores Burnham's transition from the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition to the City Beautiful Movement manifested in the 1909 plan and how it relates to European and American precedents. [MORE]

Thursday, July 23, 2009 7:00pm

From City Beautiful to City Green: Chicago and the Evolution of Its Regional Environment

Arlington Heights Memorial Library

In 1909, Daniel Burnham and Edward Bennett responded to large problems in the city and its region—problems that included the lack of public open and green spaces, and an ill-coordinated relationship of the city to its region.   Join panelists: Diane Dillon, The Newberry Library; Ann Durkin Keating; Northcentral College, and Joyce O’Keefe, Openlands for a discussion with each other and the audience about the aesthetic ideas Burnham drew upon, how his ideas for a more beautiful and verdant city encompassed the metropolitan region, and how envir [MORE]

Sunday, August 9, 2009 2:00pm

Plan of Chicago: Daniel Burnham and the Remaking of the American City

Arlington Heights Memorial Library

Join Carl Smith, Professor, Northwestern University for an illustrated talk, based on his prize-winning book on the Plan.  Part of the Make BIg Plans exhibit region-wide program series, Smith will describe this document's fascinating history and explain its central role in shaping Chicago and American city life. [MORE]

Open to the public:
M-F 9 a.m.-10 p.m. Sat. 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Sun. 12 p.m.-5:30 p.m.


Arlington Heights Memorial Library
500 N. Dunton Avenue
Arlington Heights, IL 60004
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Contact: 847-392-0100

The Burnham Plan Centennial
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