Chicago Skyline to Get Major Facelift with Construction of New Towers

There are big happenings going on with the Chicago skyline in the future according to plans released to the public on Tuesday.


Developer Related Midwest unveiled its proposal to turn 2.2 acres at 400 N. Lake Shore Drive into a gleaming two-tower complex that will transform the Chicago skyline. The towers will house condos and a hotel and will also feature an addition to the popular Riverwalk pedestrian walkway. The cascading silhouettes will boast dramatic and sweeping views of Lake Michigan and the entire downtown Chicago area, drawing organically from the area where the mouth of the Chicago River meets the majestic lake and converges with the existing skyscrapers.


The tallest of the towers will be the south tower, rising to a height of 1,100 feet and housing a 175-room upscale hotel on the lower floors with 300 separate condo units on the upper floors. The smaller north tower will be 850 feet tall and will feature 550 rental units, according to Curt Bailey, the president of Related Midwest. To shield residents and visitors from the harsh Chicago winter weather, the two towers will be connected by an enclosed ground floor atrium. Parking concerns will be addressed with an underground parking garage.


Related Midwest has also been charged with the Riverwalk extension. As part of the plan, the long-awaited DuSable Park will be brought to fruition, with Related Midwest chipping in $10 million to the park’s construction. Between the two towers, the Riverwalk expansion, and the park construction, the area surrounding the Streeterville neighborhood will be enhanced dramatically, further cementing downtown Chicago’s place as a premier global destination.


San Francisco Will Consider a Plastic Straw Ban

The amount of plastic that makes its way into landfills is staggering. Plastic that is thrown away is also a scourge to the planet’s oceans. More and more marine animals are being found with plastic in their systems.

In order to help reduce landfill waste and protect the environment, the city of San Francisco is contemplating banning plastic straws from being used in dining establishments. If San Francisco is to ultimately adopt this particular measure, it would join several other cities in California that also have this ban in place.

In reality, the plastic straw ban would not be complete. It would prohibit restaurants, bars and dining establishments from putting straws within drinks as a matter of course. A customer would have to ask for a plastic straw specifically in order for the establishment to provide one for the customer. The hope of those seeking the plastic straw measure is that establishments will begin to use straws that are made out of compostable materials such as straws made from paper.

This measure would be just another in a long-line of measures adopted within the city of San Francisco in order to cut down on landfill waste. The city has also banned the use of Styrofoam cups in the city. The use of plastic shopping bags in stores is also not allowed.

Environmental advocates hope that the proposed straw measure will be just the first measure in cutting down on waste from dining establishments. One study has shown that as much as two-thirds of San Francisco’s landfill waste comes from food packaging from restaurants.

San Francisco has the goal of becoming waste free by the end of 2020. Several measures such as the one to ban plastic straws will need to be implemented if the city is going to come close to reaching that goal.

Seattle City Council Passes Controversial Head Tax Initiative

Despite compromises on both sides of the initiative, it was a vote riddled with controversy as the Seattle City Council voted 9-0 to impose a head tax on local corporations. Monday’s vote approved the tax of $275 per employee per year on companies making more than $20 million annually.

The move was slammed by both Starbucks and Amazon, two companies that will be affected in a big way. Calling the tax proposal a “hostile approach”, Amazon made news a few weeks ago when it threatened to halt construction on a planned downtown skyscraper in response to the initiative.

Seattle mayor Jenny Durkan praised the legislation, saying that money generated will go a long way in helping to solve the city’s escalating homelessness crisis. The expected revenue of $48 million per year will be funneled back to the city to fund homeless services and provide more affordable housing. The initiative will go into effect on January 1, 2019, and will expire after a period of five years. Approximately two-thirds of the revenue will go directly into building affordable housing, a move hailed by many city officials who recognize the need to provide more options for lower-income residents. In addition to the new housing, money will be directed to support services needs including rental subsidies, shelter beds, and necessary garbage removal.

The compromise came after much debate over the original legislation which proposed a tax of $500 per employee. The original proposal would have generated $75 million in revenue
Some politicians in Olympia are already fighting back, with Republican State Sen. Mark Schoesler stating that he plans to introduce a repeal bill.

Avaaz is taking the World of Activism by Storm

Avaaz, a civic organization developed to promote activism on a global level, was established in early 2007 and is based in the United States. The group takes on issues such as conflict, poverty, corruption, animal rights, human rights and climate change. The organization was co-founded by and Res Publica and received support from the Service Employees International Union.

The organization was also co-founded by several individuals including Andrea Woodhouse, Jeremy Heimans, David Madden, Eli Pariser, Tom Petrello and Tom Pravda and Ricken Patel. Several of the individual members also serve on the board of directors for the organizations in different capacities.

The organization is supported by the generosity of individual members and through that effort the organization has raised more than $20 million. The organization was supported through donations from several foundations that provided funding for start-up costs, as well as staff prior to 2009. Since then, the organization has been supported through the individual donation effort.

The campaigns that Avaaz undertakes are managed by a team representing more than 30 countries. Communication from the team to the membership at large is typically carried out through email. The team uses methods that include email your leader, videos and on-line partitions. They also implement advertising and legal advice to help implement a variety of methods such as sit-ins, phone-ins, rallies and stunts that are always media friendly. The membership at large often suggests methods to campaign, as well as campaign topics.

The organization likes to consider supporting campaigns that are considered progressive. Even though the group is often criticized through the media for its support and involvement of certain causes, they are never deterred from their objective. There are those that often question the groups focus to utilize online methods such as petitions to achieve a goal, as it is sometimes considered to spawn a certain level of laziness. Instead of inspiring activism, are online petitions inspiring clickism? Avaaz defends their position by stating they are bringing awareness to a certain segment of the population that would have remained unaware.

The organizations remains steadfast in their mission to organize the citizens of the world to take action about certain issues that affect the entire population. The priorities of the group are set by the members and the campaigns to support are through member sampling.


Problems in Flint’s Water Continue to be Revealed

As preliminary examinations continue against the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, more developments have deepened the known extent of mismanagement and negligence in regards to Flint’s water supply. Special prosecutor Todd Flood has introduced a log book from 2013 that reveals chemicals to treat Flint’s water was not supplied by a standard pump but by a hole in the floor. This, prosecutors assert, is one of the examples of misconduct that DEQ regulators should have identified and corrected when the water source in Flint was redirected in 2014, leading to a outgrowth of bacteria and chlorine which contributed to an outbreak of Legionnaire’s Disease in the city.

Former DEQ employees Liane Shekter-Smith, Stephen Busch, Patrick Cook, and Michael Prysby are currently being looked at for crimes ranging from misconduct to involuntary manslaughter. Testimony from former Flint executive Dave Jansen showed that he was concerned about a lack of operable equipment and experienced employees, saying that the method of the hole in the floor was not a standard procedure for water treatment plants. Jansen also stated that none of the plants’ operating reports seemed to reveal the major issues within the plant. Flood also plans to show that other chemicals were added to the water through the same hole in the floor and that the plant did not have the proper equipment to safely process the chemicals into the water supply.

Defense attorneys for the DEQ employees have fought Flood’s arguments by stating that the same log shows that mixtures were distributed and recorded by the dosage. The attorneys for the accused also objected to Flood’s use of the log as it was written before the plant began to treat Flint’s water. William Kriger, an attorney for one of the accused, stated that the employees were simply following past protocol and that the standards in place never required the city to treat the river water. Preliminary examinations under Judge Jennifer Manley into the situation is still ongoing.

Neurocore: The Drug Free Anxiety Treatment Option

There are many different symptoms of anxiety; most of them depend on the particular type of anxiety that you have. Some people’s heart rate picks up and goes out of control, others sweat and feel a sense of impending doom, while yet others get adrenaline and their brain starts perceiving threats where there are none. As a whole, anxiety comes in so many different shapes and forms it can be difficult to recognize and diagnose. Let’s go over a few types of anxiety that could be affecting your day-to-day life. Learn more about Neurocore at Crunchbase.

Panic Disorder

Panic Disorder is generally related to having panic attacks. Panic attacks are something that every person will likely have once or twice during their lives. Whether it’s related to health (which brings up a whole different spectrum of anxiety such as hypochondria) or related to an immediate perceived threat, panic attacks happen. When you have panic disorder, however, panic attacks happen relatively consistently. This can be a problem in day-to-day life.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

This is the catch-all anxiety disorder. If you have anxiety that affects your day-to-day life, whether it be thoughts, physical symptoms, or even a persistent panic disorder, generally you will be diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Read more about Neurocore at

Social Anxiety Disorder

Most of us get a bit nervous when talking in front of others. However, if being in a crowd makes you start sweating and hungering to run for the door, you may have social anxiety disorder. Not to be confused with simple social anxiety, SAD is overwhelming and affects your day-to-day life.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

All of us, every one, is obsessive compulsive. Maybe you like to turn the tab on your coke sideways, or you have to have your pillow facing you. It doesn’t affect anything, but go ahead and do it. Now, if you have to flip the light switch 227 times and wash your hands 15 times in a row or else, in your mind, the world will explode, then you have a case of OCD.

There are many ways to treat anxiety disorders. You can go to a doctor and get a script like most people do. If you prefer a non-drug option give clinics like Neurocore a try. Neurocore Brain Performance center uses drug-free alternatives in order to treat anxiety disorders.

Neurocore runs brain diagnostics and attempts to treat issues with the brain using various new technologies. Electroencephalograms (EEGs), Heart Rate Variability tests (HRV), Integrated Visual and Auditory Continuous Performance Tests (IVAs), and general behavioral checklists are all tests that Neurocore uses to record and measure brain performance.

Either way, you decide to go about treating it, anxiety can be overwhelming. Once again, we all have anxiety, but if your anxiety has invaded your day-to-day life, then it may be time to visit your local doctor. Or if you prefer the drug-free route give Neurocore or other brain clinics a look.


Mariners Robinson Cano Suspended for 80 Games

The post-season hopes for the Seattle Marines took a big hit on Tuesday with the news that second baseman Robinson Cano is suspended for 80 games after testing positive for the diuretic furosemide. Effective immediately, the suspension was brought down by Major League Baseball (MLB), as it violates the league’s drug prevention and treatment program.

Cano spoke through a statement by the MLB Players Association, stating that furosemide is not a performance-enhancing drug and that he would never do anything to cheat in the game that he loves. The 35-year-old alleges that he was given the drug for medical purposes by a doctor while visiting his native Dominican Republic.

It has a been a rough week for Cano. After being hit by a pitch from Detroit’s Blaine Hardy on Sunday, Cano underwent surgery on Tuesday to repair a fractured fifth metacarpal in his right hand. According to MLB rules, Cano’s time on the disabled list as a result of the injury will count toward his suspension. The key difference is that players placed on the disabled list still receive a salary, while Cano will not be paid any compensation during his suspension, losing a total of $11.85 million of the $24 million he was set to receive in 2018. The former eight-time All-Star is also ineligible for the 2018 All-Star Game and the post-season, regardless of whether the Mariners get that far.

In his fifth year with the Mariners, Cano was batting .287, bringing in 23 RBIs and sending four over the fence. Most importantly, Cano was a stalwart for the team, not missing one game this season until he was injured on Sunday. Prior to joining the Mariners, Cano played for nine years with the New York Yankees.

Matt Badiali’s Incredible Investment Ideas

Matt Badiali’s Incredible Investment Ideas

While beginning his career, Matt Badiali worked as a scientist. His education background might have attributed to his successful works as a scientist. As such, he pursued a Bachelor of Science in Earth sciences from the Penn State University. He further enhanced his knowledge in the course he had previously studied by enrolling for a Masters in geology from the Florida Atlantic University. Although he had explored much in geology and earth sciences in his past courses, he was still interested in gaining more knowledge thus he pursued a PhD in the North Carolina University. It is until the year 2004 that one of his allies introduced him to finance.

The friend was much knowledgeable in finance since he had a PhD in this sector. He was interested in working with Matt Badiali for him to assist him in coming up with methods which would help educate the average investors on proper investing techniques. Matt was an ideal person to approach for this deal because he was passionate about every project that the engaged in and his experience in geology and science would add up in giving the best advice in investing. Matt Badiali and the friend had the idea of crafting good investment advice which would be ideal for an average American. Based on this notion, Matt writes with the purpose of assisting his father whom he witnessed struggling a lot while investing. By writing, Matt realised that this was the only way that he could use his education and experience to assist people. Visit the website to learn more.

By utilizing his writing skills, Matt Badiali has been able to help investors find the most excellent investment schemes in natural resources, metals, and energy among other areas. Most of the people who read Matt’s works have gained much information. One of his works that have helped many people is the newsletter named the Real Wealth Strategist by Banyan Hill. The newsletter has gained many loyal readers who anticipate for more ideas and business insights. One of the traits that help Matt be a good investment advisor is the love for travelling. As such, he has travelled all over the world in areas such as Hong Kong, Haiti, Papua New Guinea, Turkey, Iraq, Switzerland and many more. Moreover, he has visited several oil projects and mines where he obtains most of his investment ideas.

In his newsletter, Badiali believes that with the advancement in technology, the energy consumption will transform in a big way. The transformation will entail a shift directed towards used of electricity as opposed to the use of fossil fuels which dominates the energy today. One of the challenges that make this transformation unachievable at the moment is the lack of a battery that can be able to hold enough electricity and sustain a vast population in any setup including a city. Matt informs the readers that they can make huge returns by simply investing in the ideal resources. Being knowledgable, a person can come up with an idea that suits the needs of the people hence reap much profits from the project. In the given instance, coming up with such battery can be a breakthrough that will see the investors gaining much profit.

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Seattle Fights Homeslessness and Amazon Fights Back

Seattle has imposed a new tax that may have it’s largest companies and employers running for the hills. The new tax is set to charge large companies a high amount per employee to address the city’s homelessness issue. The money gained from the tax will go towards services for the homeless and for affordable housing projects. The tax will only affect companies that make more than 20 million US per year.
Companies like Amazon – which was founded in Seattle and is the world’s second largest company – and Starbucks have threatened to halt growth in the city in response. Amazon has even halted the construction of it’s newest high rise in the city in protest.
Starbucks has also intensely critiqued the new tax, which can be read about in detail here.
Because of protest from these companies and a few others, the city has already lowered the tax from a proposed $500 per employee to $275 per employee, per year. With the amount of employees at Amazon, $10 million alone within the expected $45 million to $50 million total revenue would come from the mega-successful company.
While Amazon doesn’t think this should be their responsibility, campaigners of the tax don’t agree. Supporters of the tax say that Amazons rapid growth in Seattle had consequences in the form of rapid incline in cost of living, leaving tons of residents in their dust. They believe that Amazon should be aware of this and do their part in fixing the problem, seeing as their company and founder are some of the wealthiest in the world.
Despite the resistance, the tax was voted in unanimously. The next few years will prove to tell if the tax will truly improve Seattle’s homeless crisis.

Equities First Holdings eases lending in Australia

Equities First Holdings is a business that operates in various parts of the world. The firm is financial lending institutions which provide a alternative methods of financing business activities as well as personal needs. The organization is offering shareholding loan which are far much better than other types of loans in terms of benefits they bring to the borrower. Equities-based loans have low interest rates meaning that borrowers will not incur huge costs when repaying the loans. Another thing about stock-based loans is that they come at a fixed interest rate. So, when a borrower is repaying, the repayment amount won’t keep on fluctuating as it happens with other loans.

Equities First Holding was formed to offer borrowers a chance to use their shares in publicly traded companies as collateral for borrowing. This is one method which has gained a huge follower-ship as borrowers are tired of the tough regulations and guidelines they encounter when approaching banks to look for financing. Equities First Holdings has simply eased the way business is done by ensuring that only the best services reach their clients. Equities First Holdings services are available in various locations including Melbourne, Australia where the firm has one of the most vibrant offices.