Chicago Public Library Data Sculpture Information

Maker in Residence Show & Tell: This Thursday February 9th, 6-8pm, 8th Floor,

Harold Washington Chicago Public Library, 400 S. State Street

This Sculpture mirrors the tracks of Chicago’s loop ‘L’ Trains and shows three Chicago neighborhoods, the Loop, Lincoln Park, and East Garfield Park in terms of selected health factors.  The project was inspired by Chicago being one of the first major cities in the United States to have publicly accessible data starting in 2009.  The open data mirrors the benefit and innovation of the Chicago Public Library, which provides access to many resources including 3D-printing and digital fabrication to the public.  All data was gathered from publicly accessible city data (2010 is the most recent year, which was the year of the last major census that comparable data across all health factors exists) and visualized through the sense of sight and touch with 3D-printing at the maker lab. 


The visualization shows trends rather than granular data and should therefore be interpreted as a general overview.  The metrics include life expectancy (over the past three decades), rate of diabetes, per capita rate of homicide and per capita income.  These factors were chosen because of their high impact on one’s health as well as their ability to be changed.  The Chicago Public Library has compiled a list of resources within the library's collection to help those with diabetes for this project.  



Data Sources: Chicago Department of Public Health, Chicago Police Department, Center for Disease Control, Bureau of Economics,



Life Expectancy

(at birth rounded to closest whole year)

Chicago: 80

East Garfield Park: 72 

Lincoln Park: 81 

Loop: 85

Illinois: 79

United States: 79



Chicago by community area


Pg. 45






(all types)

Chicago: 9.1% 

East Garfield park: 11.8 %

Lincoln Park: 2.7%

Loop: 4.7%

Illinois: 9.5%

United States: 9.8%


Sources: by community area


Estimated diabetes prevalence in Chicago for adults aged 18-89 based on aggregated Electronic Health Record (EHR) data from a selection of healthcare institutions from 2006 through 2012.


Direct link (calculated by averaging male and female life expectancies)





(per capita 2010)

Chicago: $31,641

East Garfield park: $13,596

Lincoln Park:  $71,403

Loop:  $67,699

Illinois: $27,325  

United States: $26,059


Sources by zip code


2011 inflation-adjusted dollars of annual income per person for the years 2007-2011 
Source: Chicago Department of Public Health |  Data


United States




(per capita 2010)

Chicago: .17

East Garfield park: .58

Lincoln Park: 0

Loop: .04

Illinois: .05

United States: .04




Number of reported homicides per 1,000 residents from 2003 - 2013 
Source: Chicago Police Department |  Data


United States

Population in the United States

Special Thanks:

Chicago Public Library, Everyone at the CPL Maker Lab, Mark Andersen, Emily Faulkner, 8th Floor Librarians, Margarita Reina, Elizabeth Koprucki, Polsky Center, Chi Hack Nights, Elle, Eric Dolores, Dusan Aleksandar, Justus Harris Sr., and workshop participants who took the time to listen, play, and provide insight.