Suburban park districts get millions in state grants

The Arlington Heights and Batavia park districts are among 13 agencies state wide set to share in $28 million in grants to fund recreational projects, Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced Wednesday.

The Arlington Heights Park District will receive $2.8 million to renovate the Recreation Park Pool and Bathhouse at 500 E. Miner St.

The project will turn an existing building into a new bathhouse, demolish a lap pool and children’s pool, and build a new, Olympic-size lap pool and children’s play area that is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“We are thrilled to receive this funding opportunity,” said Carrie Fullerton, executive director of the Arlington Heights Park District. “This project had an enormous amount of community support and we are very excited to update our 50-meter swimming pool and bathhouse at Recreation Park.”

The Batavia Park District also will receive $2.8 million for the Patrick J. Callahan Community Center, 150 Houston St., set to open in 2027.

Bought by the park district in 2021, the former commercial office building will be re-purposed into a community recreation center to increase indoor recreation space, according to a news release.

The Park and Recreational Facility Construction Act grants are part of the Rebuild Illinois capital improvement program and administered by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

“Grant programs like these that support our local parks and community spaces represent government at its best and I am proud to support them,” State Rep. Matt Hanson of Montgomery said in the release.

“The IDNR's $2.8 million investment in the Batavia Park District will go a long way in re-purposing an underutilized space,” he added.

Other grants recipients include Glenview, Highland Park, Northbrook park districts and city of Woodstock.

The PARC grant program provides up to 90% of project costs to help build, renovate, and improve public recreational buildings or to purchase land to be used for public access and recreational purposes. Local governments match the value of the grants.

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