Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Ravenswood, Chicago soon to be known as... Ravenswood!

Seriously folks... it seems our little burgh on the North Side has an identity crisis. So, Monday night members the Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce met to begin a really cool "branding initiative" to promote living and doing business in Ravenswood Chicago.

Seth Boustead, Chamber member and owner of Accessible Contemporary Music (shown speaking at O'Shaughnessy's , is leading a terrific campaign to "brand" the Ravenswood neighborhood making it easier for the public to identify with its unique offerings.

Ravenswood is often grouped into neighbors Lincoln Square and Andersonville.
The way it breaks down is this: "Lincoln Square" is one of Chicago's 77 Community Areas that is an umbrella for several sub-neighborhoods. Those include Ravenswood, Budlong Woods, Ravenswood Gardens and the commercial/residential neighborhood of Lincoln Square. The Andersonville neighborhood is in the "Edgewater" Community Area.

Lincoln Square and Andersonville are both associated with their vibrant and dense commercial strips full of retail and restaurants along with their European immigrant roots. In contrast, Ravenswood does not conjure up a ready image (outside of it's residents that is). It's sense of spaciousness is a great assets, but one of the obstacles to "branding" the neighborhood. Residents like the openness, yet convenience to it's own retail and proximity to busier areas. This is one of the messages we want to communicate.

Ravenswood features a long unique industrial stretch of businesses and mixed use converted warehouses. There is both residential and commercial living side by side featuring artists studios, furniture stores, advertising and media companies, architects, condos, manufacturing and restaurants. The transportation and parking are outstanding.

Here are some of the buzz words we associated with the neighborhood in a little brainstorming session: Green, eclectic, mature, parks, openness, transportation... sounds good to me!

Ravenswood as defined by the Chamber of Commerce is bordered by West Montrose to West Foster and North Clark to North Leavitt. Keep an eye out for the First Night Ravenswood being planned to roll out the branding initiative.

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