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Municipal Design Review Network (MDRN)

The Chaddick Institute has recently appointed a new Advisory Committee for the Municipal Design Review Network (MDRN). The Committee is composed of 12 experienced planning and design professionals who represent the MDRN membership throughout the Chicago metropolitan area for at least two-year terms. The Institute is pleased to announce the addition of new representatives from Libertyville, DesPlaines and Northfield this year to provide a broader range of experience and expertise.


MDRN had been operating for several years as a unique network for Chicago area communities with design review boards or staff professionals to share and develop best practices. The MDRN was organized by John Hedrick, a consulting attorney who serves as a Senior Advisor at Chaddick. The growth of the Network to almost 100 communities and approximately 200 individual participants culminated with the establishment of a formal Advisory Committee to guide the Network and plan events.

Wondering why design review matters? Check out our new online publication about the benefits of design review and the value it can add to your community.

Want more information on MDRN? Email for more information about ongoing initiatives and programming. This article from 2011 published in the American Planning Association's Regional and Intergovernmental Division Planning publication by John Hedrick also provides a good background on the development of MDRN and the group's ongoing activities.

Research: Community Appearance Regulation: Municipal Design Review Practices in Metropolitan Chicago by John Hedrick, J.D. 
This  publication for municipal board members and staff, and anyone interested in urban design issues, covers economic considerations and compares processes and current issues, including case studies and research data. To order a full copy of the publication at $5 each, contact or the Chaddick Institute at 312.362.5731.