More parking coming to Aspen Drive Library in Vernon Hills

  • Cook Memorial Public Library District Executive Director David Archer is excited about the pending parking lot expansion at the Aspen Drive Library in Vernon Hills.

      Cook Memorial Public Library District Executive Director David Archer is excited about the pending parking lot expansion at the Aspen Drive Library in Vernon Hills. Russell Lissau | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 8/27/2015 5:15 PM

A much-anticipated parking lot expansion at the Aspen Drive Library in Vernon Hills is about to begin.

Fencing has been erected around the work site, which is on the south side of the library at 701 Aspen Drive.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Construction crews should be on-site starting next week. The new lot is scheduled to be ready for vehicles in October.

The work shouldn't interfere with library operations or patron parking, said David Archer, the Cook Memorial Public Library District's executive director.

"All construction vehicles will be entering (through a gate) on Aspen Drive, not through our parking lot," Archer said.

The project will dramatically expand the library's parking capability. There are 69 spaces now, and when the work is done there'll be 119.

Officials want a bigger lot because parking can be hard to find during popular programs and at peak patron times, Archer said.

"Especially after school," he said.

Participation for some programs needs to be capped to ensure attendees can park. Sometimes, off-site parking needs to be arranged for big events, Archer said.

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Vernon Hills resident Suzy Park said she's had trouble finding parking at the library on weekends.

"I'm glad to see that it's getting done," Park said.

The lot will be built on vacant, village-owned land between the library and the nearby Sullivan Community Center.

Cook Memorial officials worked with the village and the Vernon Hills Park District, which owns the Sullivan Center, 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 and future maintenance.

If park district officials ever opt to expand the Sullivan Center and its parking lot, the two parking areas could merge, Archer said.

"Both the park district and the village have been great partners with the library in getting this project off the ground," he said.

The project is expected to cost $305,000. That's far below earlier estimates that put the price tag between $500,000 and $600,000.

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