Grantee Profile


Grants to Openlands

  • $500,000

    2013 (Inactive Grant)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — Founded in 1963, Openlands is one of the nation’s oldest and most successful metropolitan conservation organizations, helping to secure and protect land for public parks, forest preserves, land and water greenway corridors, and urban gardens. Chicago loses as many as 10,000 trees each year due to pests, disease, storms and neglect, which has negative effects on its citizens’ health and the environment. In response to the Foundation’s desire to offset carbon generated by routine operations, Openlands will use this grant to support a new tree-planting initiative to help replenish Chicago’s tree canopy.

  • $90,660

    2012 (Inactive Grant)


    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — Openlands Project is a Chicago-based non-profit organization founded in 1963 to protect the natural habitats and open spaces of northeastern Illinois and the surrounding region. This grant will support GardenKeepers, a project that will build on Openlands’ experience with school and community gardens to create a replicable model for community and school gardens, resolve legal issues faced by most would-be gardeners, educate gardeners and garden organizers, and conduct and independent evaluation of broader social and cultural impacts of the program.

  • $200,000

    2004 (Inactive Grant)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of research and analysis on regional strategies for governing public open space in the Chicago region (over two years).

  • $600,000

    2000 (Inactive Grant)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of general operations (over three years).

  • $27,700

    1998 (Inactive Grant)

    What We're Exploring: Cities, Information, and Governance

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — For open space planning in selected Chicago neighborhoods.

  • $750,000

    1997 (Inactive Grant)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — To support the Strategic Regional Growth Agenda (over three years).

  • $50,000

    1997 (Inactive Grant)

    Community Development

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — To support the SOLAR Project, a joint effort with the Metropolitan Chicago Information Center.

  • $750,000

    1994 (Inactive Grant)

    Community Development

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — To support the 21st Century Open Space Plan (over three years).

  • $750,000

    1991 (Inactive Grant)


    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — To support the 21st Century Open Space Plan, to consolidate the plans of 1,100 government entities in the nine-county region, and to implement high-priority land preservation projects.

  • $50,000

    1989 (Inactive Grant)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — To support a project to enhance open space planning in Chicago.

The MacArthur Foundation awarded Openlands $3,768,360 between 1978 and 2017.

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