What We Do
The Unity Park Advisory Council facilitates the use of Unity Park by the public through the following.
Maintenance and up-keep of the park
Creating garden and art projects
Planning and hosting special events at the park
In 1993 UPAC convinced the City to donate the remainder of the surrounding parking lot to the Park District and to expand Unity Park. The 1994 expansion quadrupled the size of the 1993 park from Drummond almost all the way to Schubert. In the year 2000, the City used eminent domain to close Schubert Avenue at Kimball, and to acquire four properties immediately north and south of Schubert, which expanded Unity Park to its current size. During this period the spray pool and comfort station were built. UPAC oversaw and provided direction for all of these expansions.
Earlier in 2013, UPAC prepared and submitted an application and won approval from the Chicago Park District to be one of the first 35 playgrounds in the City to be rehabbed under the Park District’s new “Chicago Plays!” capital funding program. All 300 Chicago Park District playgrounds are scheduled to be rehabbed over the next five years, but the first 35 were selected from among competing parks that submitted applications. Unity’s biggest new feature is the web climber, which replaces the wooden pirate ship. The other play structures were also expanded and painted. All of Unity’s old fibar was removed and replaced, and the asphalt slab was resurfaced. The ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new and improved Unity play area was held during Pumpkinfest, on Saturday October 26th.
Since 2000, UPAC has provided programs at Unity Park, beyond what the Park District provides. In the last few years, UPAC’s calendar has included four regular events in the park: an April Earth Day cleanup and planting, a July “Art in the Park” program (where paintings are later exhibited in local galleries), an August movie, and the October Pumpkinfest--our signature event. In 2013, UPAC also presented a house DJ night in June and a blues and jazz concert in September. UPAC hosts an annual December fundraiser that enables it to offer all programming, free to the public.
Innovations at Unity
Unity Park and UPAC brought the innovation of soft surfaces for kids' play areas to Chicago.
Read about how UPAC got started.