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Related Cos. was recently honored with a prestigious Chicago Neighborhood Development Award for its role in renovating the Parkway Gardens

Parkway Gardens, a 35-building affordable housing community in Chicago’s Woodlawn neighborhood that was the childhood home of First Lady Michelle Obama.

Related was named the recipient of the “Outstanding For-Profit Neighborhood Real Estate Project Award” at the 20th annual CDNA ceremony, held February 20 at the Hilton Chicago Hotel. Dubbed “the Oscars of community development,” the awards honor significant achievements in development, architecture and community organizing. The “Outstanding For-Profit Neighborhood Real Estate Project Award” is given to a for-profit real estate project that responds to community needs and shows an innovative approach to design and financing.

Working in conjunction with Wells Fargo & Company, city and state officials and community leaders, Related spearheaded a $100 million renovation of Parkway Gardens, which serves more than 2,400 residents on Chicago’s South Side. In addition to upgrading the community’s infrastructure and 694 residential units, Related installed a state-of-the-art security system and added a number of new amenity spaces, including a laundry facility, computer lab, barbeque areas, a vegetable garden and community green spaces throughout the property. As part of the public-private partnership, which extends the affordability of the units for another 30 years, Related also installed a new athletic field at nearby John Foster Dulles Elementary School, allowing its students – the majority of whom live at Parkway Gardens – to have recess and sporting events outside for the first time in school history.