Governor Quinn Announces $15.3 Million for Local Parks and Open Space Projects

Brooke Anderson
Grant Klinzman
Governor Quinn Announces $15.3 Million for Local Parks and Open Space Projects
OAK PARK - Governor Pat Quinn today announced a $15.3 million investment in local park projects across Illinois.  As part of Governor Quinn�s agenda to ensure that no child is left inside, the projects are funded through the state�s Open Space Lands Acquisition and Development program (OSLAD). The initiative is designed to expand outdoor recreation and open space in communities across Illinois.

�Whether you are in a big city or small town, local parks let families across Illinois enjoy nature and spend time together,� Governor Quinn said. �These projects improve parks throughout the state and expand green space in dozens of communities, creating jobs and making our state a better place to live and work.�

The 45 projects announced today include picnic shelters and playgrounds, ball fields and trails, as well as wetland enhancements, prairie restoration and bioswales within local parks. In some instances, funding will enable communities to purchase land to be used for future green space.

�Local park districts and forest preserve districts, and outdoor recreation agencies are our partners in offering families and children places to help make sure we achieve our goal of leaving no child inside in Illinois,� said IDNR Director Marc Miller. �The investment of these funds for park projects has the added benefit of supporting and creating jobs in cities and towns across the state.�

The OSLAD program, administered by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) is funded through the Real Estate Transfer Tax, which is part of every property sale in Illinois. Grant recipients are responsible for contributing at least half of the total project cost. The $15.3 million awarded statewide this year, combined with the grantees� matching funds, will result in more than $30.6 million of local park development projects and land acquisition in Illinois. .

The OSLAD program began in 1986 and, not including today�s announced projects, has provided approximately $362.5 million for 1,596 local park projects in Illinois. 

A list of this year�s OSLAD grant recipients and project descriptions is below.

(D) Development Projects
(A) Acquisition Projects
(D) ALSIP PARK DISTRICT (Cook County) $368,500.00, to renovate the Aquatic
Park on South Kostner Ave. Improvements include new mechanical systems, new tube and drop slides, handicapped accessibility improvements and a new spray ground water park. (Contact: Jeannette Huber, 708-389-1003)

(D) ALTON, CITY OF (Madison County) $148,600.00, to renovate a portion of the historic Riverview Park overlooking the Mississippi River and the Meeting of the Great Rivers National Scenic Byway.  The project includes improvements to the existing bandstand, walkway and landscape enhancements, renovations to existing failing walls, a plaza overlook structure, solar powered site lighting, bike racks and a �grasscrete� driveway access into the park. (Contact: Mayor Tom Hoechst, 618-463-3500)

(D) BATCHTOWN, VILLAGE OF (Calhoun County) $15,000.00 to renovate the playground at Batchtown Park.  The project will include the removal of existing playground equipment and the installation of commercial play equipment and swings that meet safety specifications and ADA guidelines.  Park benches and trash receptacles will also be added.  (Contact: Mayor Bernard Mager, 618-396-2542)

(D) BELLEVILLE, CITY OF (St. Clair County) $335,000.00, to renovate South Side Park on 6th and Monroe Streets.  The project includes a new playground, an ADA accessible fishing pier with solar lighting, softball field reconstruction, a new warning track and padding for a wall behind home plate, bench swings, picnic tables, a restroom building, an extension of the bike trail around the existing lake and parking lot improvements. (Contact: Mayor Mark Eckert, 618-233-6810)

(D) BELVIDERE TOWNSHIP PARK DISTRICT (Boone County) $400,000.00, to further develop downtown riverfront Doty Park. New amenities include a spray pad, paths, restrooms, a changing/warming building, hockey rink, shade structures, landscaping, fencing, drinking fountains and signs.  The existing playground and shelter will also be renovated. (Contact: Dan Roddewig, 815-547-5711)

(A) BENSENVILLE PARK DISTRICT (DuPage County) $506,100.00, to acquire 4.06 acres on Hillside Drive.  Future development includes soccer and softball fields, a fitness trail, shelter, basketball court, a playground, restrooms and parking. (Contact: Steve Cherveny, 630-766-7015)

(D) BETHALTO, VILLAGE OF (Madison County) $400,000.00, for Phase II construction of the 40-acre Culp Sports Complex. Development includes four baseball/softball diamonds, a football field, soccer field, bleachers, restroom facilities, open green space, interior roadways and parking. (Contact: Mayor Steve Bryant, 618-377-8051)

(D) BRAIDWOOD, CITY OF (Will County) $116,800, to further develop Route 66 Park on Oak Street.  The project includes a restroom facility, band shelter/stage, a game area with shuffleboard, horseshoes and baggo games and an ice rink.  (Mayor William Rulien, 815-458-2333)

(D) BROADVIEW PARK DISTRICT (Cook County) $175,000.00, for Phase I improvements at Schroeder Park on 16th Street.  The existing baseball field and spectator areas will be renovated and new field lighting will be added.  Other new facilities include a batting cage, a trail system with fitness stations and a rain garden with educational signage. (Contact: Katrina Thompson, 708-343-5637)

(D) BROOKFIELD, VILLAGE OF (Cook County) $260,300.00, to add new facilities at Kiwanis Park on Brookfield Avenue.  Phase I improvements include a bandshell and stage, a basketball court, two volleyball courts, baggo and horseshoe courts, trail with fitness stations, disc golf, permeable pavement and a bio-swale for parking lot stormwater treatment. (Contact: Keith Sbiral, 708-485-7344)

(D) BUFFALO GROVE PARK DISTRICT (Cook County) $400,000.00, to redevelop Willow Stream Community Park on Old Checker Road.  Project components include trail system enhancements, a woodland interpretive walk, a nature based playground, picnic shelter, warming house, disc golf an inter-generational play area and sand volleyball.  (Contact: Dan Schimmel, 847-850-2100)

(D) CALUMET MEMORIAL PARK DISTRICT (Cook County) $350,000.00, to renovate Downey Park on West Jeffery Avenue.  Improvements include a softball field with dugouts and bleachers, a shelter, tennis court, two half-court basketball courts, a splash pad, batting cages, an amphitheater, additional parking and a multi-use trail with fitness stations.  Improvements to the spectator area of the existing baseball fields are also included. (Contact: Eric Schneider, 708-868-2530)

(D) CHICAGO PARK DISTRICT (Cook County) $1,400,000.00, for the initial development of Park 553 on South Sacramento Avenue in the South Lawndale community area.  Project components include two artificial turf soccer fields, two natural turf baseball/softball fields, two natural turf all-purpose athletic fields, lighted walking paths, a playground with a spray feature, skate park, basketball court, parking area, natural area, athletic field lighting, park amenities such as park benches, drinking fountains, garbage cans, landscaping and utilities such as electrical, water and sewer. (Contact: Michael Kelly, 312-742-4200)

(A) COOK COUNTY, FOREST PRESERVE DISTRICT OF (Cook County) $1,003,000.00, to acquire a 28.15-acre parcel north of Powderhorn Lake in the Calumet Region. The site consists of wetland and upland forest which will be restored.  Future development includes a walking path and parking area.  (Contact: Arnold Randall, 708-771-1510)

(D) CRETE PARK DISTRICT (Will County) $75,000.00, Crete Park District and Crete Lions Club will build a Recycle Park on Bradford Place in Crete. Crete Lions Club is donating the match of $75,000.  Special features will include ADA equipment, panels that include Braille, bike racks, water fountain, benches, adult swing, open space, solar panel light, shelter, area to be left natural for wildlife habitat, along with playground equipment for all ages. (Contact: Patricia Polzin, 708-672-6969)

(D) CRYSTAL LAKE PARK DISTRICT (McHenry County) $400,000.00, to renovate and expand the recreation facilities at Woodscreek Park on Willow Tree Drive.  Improvements include playground replacement, adding a splash park, expanding the parking lot, adding a second tennis court and second fishing pier, relocating an existing sand volley ball pit, adding bocce and baggo courts, benches, paths and landscaping.  The shoreline of the existing pond will be renovated by removing invasive species and planting native wetland grasses. (Contact: Jason Herbster, 815-459-0680)

(D) DECATUR PARK DISTRICT (Macon County) $400,000.00, for the Phase I redevelopment of Nelson Park.  Project components include the renovation of parts of a large pavilion and a small pavilion, development of a fitness trail with exercise stations, a mountain biking trail, fishing pier, restoration of ten acres with native prairie plants and habitat improvement, a bio-swale to reduce soil erosion and interpretive signage. (Contact: William L. Clevenger, 217-422-5911)

(D) FOX VALLEY PARK DISTRICT (Kane County) $400,000.00, to redevelop Jericho Lake Park on Jericho Road.  Site features will include trails, fishing areas, a canoe launch, large shelter with restrooms, prairie and riparian restoration areas, a playground, disc golf and improved parking.  (Contact: Nancy McCaul, 630-897-0516)

(D) FRANKLIN PARK, PARK DISTRICT OF (Cook County) $296,000.00, to renovate Chestnut Park on West Chestnut Avenue. Project components include a shelter, fitness stations, paths, open lawn/soccer area, benches, baggo boards, an accessible playground with interactive and nature based play elements, a putting green, water fountain, and safety berming. (Contact: Joe Modrich, 847-455-2852)

(D) FREEPORT PARK DISTRICT (Stephenson County) $400,000.00, to renovate and enhance Krape Park on the southwest side of town.  Project components include an extension of the walking path, signage for the nature trail, playground, shelter and restroom renovations.  (Contact:  Jack Carey, 815-235-6114)

(D) GIFFORD, TOWN OF (Champaign County) $40,700.00, to replace outdated playground equipment at Roessler Park.  The park is located on the southern edge of the Village of Gifford. (Contact: Derald Ackerman, 217-568-7317)

(D) GRAYSLAKE COMMUNITY PARK DISTRICT (Lake County) $400,000.00, to renovate Jones Island Park on the shoreline of Grays Lake. Project components include the replacement of a deteriorated section of steel seawall with a more natural finished material and the addition of a fully accessible public launch pier for canoes and kayaks.  The public beach will also be renovated.  New facilities include two picnic shelters, a trail system with fishing stations and the addition of a rain garden with interpretive signage which will serve as a retention area to reduce flooding. (Contact: Jeff Nehila, 847-223-7529)

(D) HOMER GLEN, VILLAGE OF (Will County) $171,000.00, to develop Goodings Grove Park on Glengary Drive in the northeast quadrant of the village. The project includes an open play area, playground, basketball circle, a volleyball court, picnic shelter, and a walking path.   (Contact: James Daley, 708-301-0632)

(D) HOPKINS PARK, VILLAGE OF (Kankakee County) $200,000.00, to develop a new park on South Main Street.  Project components include a new parking lot, pavilion, restroom facilities, basketball court, playground area for children ranging in ages from 1-12, new landscaping and signage and a multi-use/walking path. (Contact: Walter Jones, 815-944-8625)

(D) ITASCA PARK DISTRICT (DuPage County) $396,200.00, to redevelop Peacock Park on Bryn Mawr Avenue.  Improvements include a loop trail, baseball field, soccer field, picnic shelter, two half-court basketball courts, a volleyball court, baggo and bocce courts, a drinking fountain and landscape enhancements. (Contact: Maryfran Leno, 630-773-2257)

for the initial development of 384 acres of the 741 acre Brunner Family Forest Preserve on Illinois Route 31 in West Dundee.   Development components include parking, two shelters, trails along the edge of the Fox River, fishing stations, interpretive signs, and habitat/wetland restoration. (Contact: Monica Meyers, 630-232-5980)

$150,200.00, to acquire a .138 acre lot to expand Beach-Oak Park on Beach Avenue. The expanded property will allow for a new multipurpose court, facilitating half-court basketball and small skateboarding structures. (Contact: Roy Cripe, 708-354-4580)

(D) LINCOLN PARK DISTRICT (Logan County) $400,000.00, to construct a new swimming facility to replace the district�s only pool which was closed in 2012. The new facility will have a six lane lap pool, a zero-depth toddler pool, a water slide and concession/mechanical building.  The existing restroom and shower facilities will be retained. (Contact: Marcia Greenslate, 217-737-5666)

(D) LINDENHURST PARK DISTRICT (Lake County) $400,000.00, for the Phase 1 development of the Oak Ridge Park-Wetzel Fields on Grass Lake Road.  Project components include a disc golf course, a spray pad, soccer field, shelter with restrooms, a multi-use trail, wetland and woodland enhancement, interpretive signage and a parking lot with a bio-swale area.  (Contact: Tom Lippert, 847-356-6011)

(D) LYONS, VILLAGE OF (Cook County) $400,000.00, to renovate Smith Park on West Lawndale Avenue.  New amenities include a multi-purpose loop trail, picnic shelter, splash pad, a restroom building, fitness stations, a playground, two tennis courts and a community garden area. (Contact: Eric Lawhead, 708-442-4500)

(D) METROPOLIS, CITY OF (Massac County) $331,000.00, to construct a new bathhouse at Franklin Park Pool on East 4th Street.  (Contact: Mayor Billy McDaniel, 618-524-4016)

(D) NAPERVILLE PARK DISTRICT (Will County) $400,000.00, to develop the district�s first nature center at Knoch Knolls along the DuPage River in south Naperville. In addition to the nature center, the project includes a prairie playground, an improved canoe launch and river access, trails, pervious parking and an expanded disc golf course. (Contact: Ray McGury, 630-848-3500)

(D) NEW LENOX COMMUNITY PARK DISTRICT (Will County) $287,500.00, to develop Walker Country Estates Park at Lenox Street and Cooper Road.  The site contains 7.7 acres of land that can be developed into a neighborhood park along with 5.2 acres of existing creek area and stormwater retention that can be enhanced to provide habitat. The park will include a creative play area, splash pad, fitness stations, basketball shoot-around, walking path and fishing station. (Contact: Greg Lewis, 815-485-3584)

(A) NORRIDGE, VILLAGE OF (Cook County) $218,500.00, to acquire a .34-acre parcel at Montrose and Canfield Avenue.  Future development will include a shelter, tot lot, bike racks and a water fountain. (Contact: Brian Gaseor, 708-453-0800)

(D) OAK PARK, PARK DISTRICT OF (Cook County) $400,000.00, to construct an environmental learning center at Austin Gardens Park on Ontario Street. The building will feature a covered outdoor patio for children's nature day camps, group picnics and concession operations.  The project also includes the development of a discovery garden with birding scopes, native habitat and path system improvements, interpretive signs and a gathering area with game tables. (Contact: Jan Arnold, 708-725-2020)

(D) PEORIA PARK DISTRICT (Peoria County) $217,500.00, to develop the Tawny Oaks Nature Center on a parcel adjacent to Singing Woods-an Illinois State Dedicated Nature Preserve.  The site is located north of Peoria off Route 88.  In addition to the nature center, the project includes a shelter, trails, interpretive stations, a permeable paver parking lot and 11 acres of various plantings including a turf grass alternative site, hill prairie mix area, a forbs nursery and a short grass prairie area. (Contact: Bonnie Noble, 309-682-1200)

(D) PINCKNEYVILLE, CITY OF (Perry County) $400,000.00, to develop a city park off Mildred Drive in the northwest part of the city.  Phase I development consists of five soccer fields, one football field, storm sewer, an entrance road and a parking lot.  (Contact: Mayor August Kellerman, 618-357-6916)

(D) ROCKFORD PARK DISTRICT (Winnebago County) $400,000.00, to renovate and add new facilities at Sinnissippi Park on Arlington Avenue.  The project includes replacement/addition of play elements at the existing playground, a restroom and small shelter to serve attendees of performances and events at the Music Shell, a new music themed playground, two new shelters, bocce ball and baggo areas, connection of existing paths to create a 1/3-mile loop path, lighting, native landscaping, a bioswale and parking areas. (Contact: Time Dimke, 815-987-8880)

(A) SHILOH, VILLAGE OF (St. Clair County) $276,500.00, to acquire the 32.7-acre Yorktown Golf Course, located in the southwestern part of the village.  Improvements will include asphalt trails throughout the course, multi-use trails in a separate area, two acres of native plantings, a pavilion and renovations to the existing restrooms.  (Contact: Mayor James Vernier, 618-632-1022)

(D) STICKNEY, VILLAGE OF (Cook County) $123,700.00, to renovate Stickney Children�s Park on Oak Park Avenue.  The project includes a new playground for tots up to 12 years, a small splash pad, a drinking fountain, picnic shelter, baggo game and a bio-swale to handle storm water.  (Contact: Dan O'Reilly, 708-749-4400)

(D) SUGAR GROVE PARK DISTRICT (Kane County) $400,000.00, for the initial development of Harter Community Park south of Harter Road and west of Illinois Route 47. The site will include three ballfields, a multi-use court, shelter, pathways, playground, football practice field, baggo courts and enhanced natural areas.  (Contact: Greg Repede, 630-466-7436)

(D) WEST CHICAGO PARK DISTRICT (DuPage County) $118,800.00, to develop the Dyer Nature Area within Reed-Keppler Park on West National Street. The project includes a nature trail, boardwalk, interpretive signs, site furniture and landscaping. (Contact:  Gary Major, 630-231-9474)

(A) WESTMONT PARK DISTRICT (DuPage County) $281,500.00, to acquire a 4.78-acre parcel on Wilmette Avenue in the southeast section of Westmont. Future development includes a loop trail, playground, shelter, a fishing pier, an open play area for soccer and football and parking.  (Contact: Ron Gunter, 630-969-8080)
(D) WHEELING PARK DISTRICT (Cook County) $266,900.00, to renovate Pleasant Run Park on Equestrian Drive.  The plan consists of new playground equipment with synthetic playground safety surfacing, a shelter, athletic field and open space, a renovated basketball court, an asphalt pathway to loop the perimeter of the park along with seat walls around the playground area and new landscaping.  Also included in the design are additional benches, trash/recycling receptacles and bicycle racks.  (Contact: Jan Buchs, 847-465-2935)

(C) YORKVILLE, UNITED CITY OF (Kendall County) $400,000.00, to further develop Bicentennial Riverfront Park on the Fox River.  The park is adjacent to the Marge Cline Whitewater Course, a canoe/kayak chute.  Improvements to the park include a canoe beach, fishing pier, boat launch, playground, shared-use path, woodland restoration with nature/interpretive trail, lighting, and improvements to the existing brick walkway and shelter.   (Contact: Bart Olson, 630-553-7575)
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