Aspen Drive Library in Vernon Hills to get more parking

Aspen Drive Library patrons who've been frustrated by an occasional shortage of available parking spots, rejoice: The lot is about to expand.

Cook Memorial Public Library District trustees on Tuesday agreed to move forward with a plan to add 51 spots to the lot at the Vernon Hills library, 701 Aspen Drive.

It will bring capacity to 119 spaces by midsummer, library spokeswoman Becky Ferguson said.

The lot expansion will be built on land south of the library, between the facility and the nearby Sullivan Community Center.

Now vacant and grassy, the land is owned by the village. It has also been sought for parking and other uses by the Vernon Hills Park District, which owns the Sullivan Center, and by Hawthorn Elementary District 73, which has facilities nearby.

Library officials worked with those agencies to come up with the parking lot plan. The village still will own the land, but the library district will pay for the parking lot construction.

"Several branches of government are working together to meet a community need," Ferguson said. "Parking there benefits all those parties."

The village board approved the plan in December.

Library patron Deborah Carlberg was happy to hear about the pending project Wednesday as she browsed for books in the children's department with two of her kids.

"I have three little ones under the age of 5, so proximity to the front door is important, and sometimes parking is an issue," said Carlberg, of Libertyville.

Customer Lou Gilgien supports the project, too.

"I've always seen it packed," Gilgien, of Roselle, said of the library parking lot. "If they expand it, it'll do some good."

Construction is expected to cost $500,000 to $600,000, Ferguson said. Work will start this spring "as soon as the weather clears," she said.

The new parking area will occupy about one-third of the 1.4-acre parcel, Ferguson said.

The remaining two-thirds will remain undeveloped until the government agencies in the area determine their building needs.

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  Libertyville resident Deborah Carlberg was excited about a plan to expand parking at the Aspen Drive Library in Vernon Hills. Russell Lissau/
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