Chapter Meeting: The 78: Chicago's Next Great Neighborhood

When:  Sep 24, 2019 from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM (CT)
Associated with  Chicago

The 78: Chicago's Next Great Neighborhood

The 78 is a 62-acre blank canvas in downtown Chicago bordered by Clark Street, Roosevelt Road, 16th Street and the Chicago River. The 78 will set a new standard for mixed-use developments. Drawing inspiration from local surroundings, the art, architecture and design elements of The 78 will establish a powerful sense of place and belonging. Key to this vision is the incorporation of the Chicago River, which is showcased in a half-mile riverfront experience connecting to the existing Chicago Riverwalk and on par with the greatest urban waterfronts of the world – all while featuring undeniable “Chicago Soul”.

The master plan is designed to emphasize the site’s greatest asset, the Chicago River, with more than a half-mile of continuous riverfront that will connect downtown to Chinatown and continue the momentum occurring today on the Chicago River. Cafés, promenades, bikeways, substantial landscaping and cultural amenities will line the riverfront and make it a gathering place for the public.

The presentation will focus on the following learning objectives:

  1. Learn about the current development plans for Chicago’s 78th neighborhood.
  2. Discuss the steps and timeline for the development and phases of the project.
  3. Understand the players involved and their role in the project.
  4. Discuss the challenges involved in a development of this magnitude.

Presented by:

Don Biernacki, Senior Vice President of Construction, Related Midwest
Michael Pfeffer, Vice President of Architecture, Related Midwest

Continuing Education: 1.0 AIA/CES LU

Cost for Program & Dinner:

CSI Chicago Members: Complimentary
Nonmembers: $60

Registration: Required by Tuesday, September 17.
No refunds for cancellations within 5 days of the event. 

About The Presenters:


Don Biernacki is the Senior Vice President of Construction at Related Midwest where he oversees the building of the region's most iconic structures and staple communities, redefining and enhancing the landscape of real estate.  Along with his team of talented design and construction experts, Biernacki is responsible for all of Related Midwest's ground-up and renovation projects.   

Biernacki is passionate about investing in the communities he works in. At Related Midwest, he created a mentorship program for small business owners to help support their operations, capacity building and growth. Don has received numerous awards for his commitment to the community and accomplishments including the Distinguished Labor Leader Award by Reverend Jesse Jackson's Rainbow PUSH Coalition and the Award of Honor by the CBC.   

Biernacki is committed to a number of community and charitable organizations. Among these organizations, Don serves in a number of roles including Treasurer on the Board of Directors for Saturday Place and also serves as board member of the Construction Engineering Advisory Council at Marquette University. Biernacki is also a member of the Board of Directors of SOS Children's Villages Illinois, a quality and innovative and foster care provider. 

Mike-Pfeffer-Crop-B_W.jpgMichael Pfeffer, AIA, LEED AP is Vice President of Architecture at Related Midwest where he works directly with architecture and urban planning firms to oversee the design of the company’s two largest pipeline projects: The 78, a 62-acre, mixed-use neighborhood development in downtown Chicago, located at Clark Street and Roosevelt Road along the Chicago River, and 400 Lake Shore Drive, a residential development that will be located on the site of the former Chicago Spire project.

Pfeffer joined Related Midwest in 2016 after spending more than 15 years at the Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), where he served as Managing Director responsible for project design throughout Chicago, London, Asia and the South Pacific. During his time with the firm, Pfeffer worked in more than two dozen cities around the world, honing a global design perspective through large-scale mixed use, residential, office, and hospitality, as well as master plans.

In 2014, Pfeffer received the AIA National Young Architect Award for exceptional leadership and significant contributions to the architecture profession during his career at SOM. Pfeffer has also been recognized by Crain’s Chicago Business with the coveted “40 Under 40” distinction – highlighting 40 leaders under the age of 40 who are making an impact in Chicago.

Pfeffer holds a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Notre Dame and is a member of the American Institute of Architects and the Urban Land Institute. In addition, he sits on the Board of Directors for Windy City Habitat for Humanity.

Images courtesy of Related Midwest.

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CSI Chicago is a AIA CES Registered Provider (Provider Number S000).

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