Darlene Hightower starts her new job at the Metropolitan Planning Council in January. (WTTW News)

The Metropolitan Planning Council just hired its first Black president and CEO. The nonprofit, which began in 1934, is an independent planning and policy organization that seeks to build a more sustainable and equitable Chicago.

(Kristen Thometz / Chicago Tonight)

Over the past two years, a newly formed coalition of health care institutions and professionals has raised $10.5 million to fund initiatives it deems vital to improving the life expectancy of West Side residents.

On Chicago’s West Side, the average life expectancy is just 69 years. What one coalition of health care institutions and professionals is doing to change that.

West Garfield Park residents have a life expectancy of 69 years, compared to an average life expectancy of 85 years in the Loop. By 2030, West Side United hopes to cut that life expectancy gap in half.