Economic Downturn and Potential of Bridgeport, Chicago

Ramova Theatre, out of business since 1985.
Photo by Lauren Yard


By Alheli Garcia, Stephen Ruiz, and Lauren Yard

Bridgeport, a community of nearly 32,000 people located on the South Side, is known for its blue and white collar workmanship and diverse community developed nearly 200 years ago.

Neighborhoods in Bridgeport historically thrived mainly on local businesses including restaurants, convenience stores and department stores.

The once thriving community is now primarily filled with vacant storefronts as shown in the story map below. Due to a deteriorating economy, many storefronts are now vacant. This causes local market values to decrease significantly.

“Businesses were better back then, when the stores weren’t vacant here,” said Elaine Sakellariou, owner of George’s Restaurant located down the street from Guaranteed Rate Field. “All the kids in the neighborhood had a job back then and would start working at 14 years old. The storefronts were full; if you needed shoes or a dress for a party, there were stores to go to.”

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Dubai’s Amazing Transformation Over the Last 32 Years

By Alheli Garcia

Photo from Pixabay

This Google Timelapse shows the increased infrastructure in the city of Dubai . The city has significantly expanded over the last 32 years.

Before the discovery of oil, Dubai was an isolated city surrounded by desert.According to Gulf News, oil was first discovered in Dubai in 1966 and its first oil exportation occurred in 1969. Two more oil fields were discovered in 1972 and 1973 increasing the city’s revenue. The government in Dubai created the first refinery that exported 120 ,000 barrels of oil a day in 1999. Finally, in 2007, Dubai claimed ownership of all gas and oil related projects including international negotiations with other oil companies.

Thanks in large part to the discovery of this natural resource resulting in Dubai’s prosperous economy, the city has drastically transformed its skyline attracting many tourists around the world. The government has invested the oil profits in tourism and infrastructure expanding the city area in the process. It is home to the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa which stands 2,217 ft. high according to the Wall Street Journal. Another prominent attraction is the Palm Jumeirah consisting of artificial islands along the shore of Dubai. These islands become visible in the Timelapse starting in 2003.
Apart from its world famous infrastructure, Dubai has become a very diverse city due to its industrialization growth causing a massive influx of migrant workers. Additionally, diversity in the city increased when prime minister Sheikh Mohammed allowed a land reform allowing foreigners to own real estate. According to Next City, 96 percent of its population is foreign born.