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updated: 7/5/2012 5:23 PM

Plan to help guide Carpentersville's vision of Old Town

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A draft plan for Carpentersville's Old Town outlines how to make the most of the historic neighborhood's assets while making it a better place to live.

The village board is scheduled to take a vote on the blueprint on Tuesday, after 10 months of working with community stakeholders, residents and the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning.

The agency put the plan together. It includes goals for transportation, development, urban design and parks and open spaces -- ones that officials say could be reached in 15 years.

One of the main issues involves improving traffic flow through the neighborhood, particularly on Washington and Main streets.

"That is something that people kept saying time and time again was the biggest issue," said Trevor Dick, a senior planner with the agency. "A lot of people said if we can do that, they'd really be happy with the Old Town."

The draft plan recommends that the village commission a second study to determine whether a traffic signal or other improvements could help with traffic flow at that intersection. An initial study the village did in 2009 concluded that there wasn't enough traffic there to support a stoplight at that location.

Assistant Village Manager Joe Wade said commissioning a study for that intersection is definitely one of the village's short-term goals, but officials would first need to secure enough funding to make it happen.

But short-term goals that can be met within the next year or two involve increasing the visibility of crosswalks and putting up seasonal street banners on Main Street.

"That's probably something we could do relatively quickly and also relatively for not a lot of money," Wade said.

Longer term goals include:

• Turning the Fox River in that area into a major attraction and recruiting retailers and restaurants for the people who'd come, said John Svalenka, the village's senior planner.

• Deciding whether to turn a 100-year-old railroad bridge north of the Main Street bridge into a link for the Fox River Bike Path and Raceway Woods Forest Preserve.

When it came to the study itself, Carpentersville leaders didn't have to pay for it, as they had already secured a grant from the planning agency that covered its cost.

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