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updated: 7/12/2012 11:19 PM

Island Lake fast-tracks new village hall

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By Jennifer Earl
jearl@dailyherald.com

Island Lake may get a new village hall and police station faster than originally planned.

The village board approved a business plan by consulting firm Draper and Kramer Inc. to develop a plan for the new facility's construction, which is predicted to take about a year.

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With Water Tower Park, located on Route 176 at Newport Court, as the site for the project, officials said all that's left to do is come up with architectural and financial plans.

Rick Ehlert, architect from BKV group, an architecture, interior design, landscaping and engineering firm, said his company is double-staffing to finish the project sooner.

"We're planning to get the building physically in construction stages as quick as we can," he said. "It's called fast-tracking the project."

The village hall and police station now operate at a former school building at 3720 Greenleaf Ave. The village's Creative Playtime Preschool and its senior center are also housed in the building.

The search for a new municipal facility began because of needed building repairs to the current facility that will cost more than $800,000, officials have said.

Draper and Kramer will work with the BKV Group to conduct a feasibility study.

The village will pay Draper and Kramer $30,000 to complete the first phase of the project, which will include design drawings, formation of a construction budget, a timeline and a financial model.

Ehlert said the plans are moving quickly because the cost of property is low.

"We're trying to get it done in three-quarters of the amount of normal time," he said.

The new building that will house the municipal offices will be a lease-back. The BKV Group will finance the design and construction of the building.

Ehlert said officials will pay rent shortly after the building is done and will own it after 30 years.

Mayor Debbie Herrmann, who has been meeting with the BKV Group every other week, said the project is long overdue.

"It's at its infant stages, and were excited to see what is to come," she said.

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