Lake County forest district prepares $18.5 million project list

 
 
Updated 11/12/2018 5:10 PM
hello
  • The Lake County Forest Preserve District hopes to secure state funding to build a key 1.75-mile segment of the Millennium Trail in the Round Lake area. It would give 25,400 residents direct access to the regional trail system.

      The Lake County Forest Preserve District hopes to secure state funding to build a key 1.75-mile segment of the Millennium Trail in the Round Lake area. It would give 25,400 residents direct access to the regional trail system. Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer, 2012

  • Replacing the exterior siding on the Adlai E. Stevenson II Historic Home in Mettawa is on a list of Lake County Forest Preserve District projects that could be submitted for state funding.

    Replacing the exterior siding on the Adlai E. Stevenson II Historic Home in Mettawa is on a list of Lake County Forest Preserve District projects that could be submitted for state funding. Daily Herald file photo

The Lake County Forest Preserve District is ready with $18.5 million in projects to submit for funding should the new administration in Illinois advance a capital spending plan.

The dozen projects range from a crucial link on the Millennium Trail to exterior siding for the historic Adlai E. Stevenson home. They're not prioritized, but all but one previously has been identified and reviewed by various committees.

The list was assembled after the district's legislative consultant, Strategic Advocacy Inc., said the General Assembly could approve a capital spending bill this fall or early next year.

"If there is one, our legislative consultant said, 'Be ready to go,'" said Ty Kovach, the forest preserve's executive director.

"We pretty much grabbed everything they've (forest board commissioners) seen before and does not have operational impact or has minimal operational impact and can be ready to go on short notice," he added.

Projects are located throughout the county and either part of the district's 10-year capital plan or were reviewed but didn't make the cut.

"Items had been on the list that had been approved but didn't necessarily have funding," said forest board President Ann Maine.

"We knew a new board could change their mind but we thought it would be good to get it in front," of the finance committee, she added.

New board members are seated Dec. 3, but leadership and committee assignments may change depending on the official outcome of some very close races.

The single-largest project by price is $4.2 million for a 1.75-mile section of the Millennium Trail that would provide direct access to more than 25,400 residents in the Round Lake area. About 31 miles of the countywide Millennium trail are complete, but there's no funding for the remaining 10 miles. When complete, the trail will connect 12 communities, 13 schools, 18 parks and 12 forest preserves.

Other projects include:

• $1.35 million for a bridge and trail connection at Lake Carina Forest Preserve in Gurnee.

• $55,000 for a shade structure at the popular Children's Grove playground at Independence Grove near Libertyville.

• $3.67 million for habitat restoration at the Lakewood and Ray Lake forest preserves, a 3,866-acre complex of diverse natural communities near Wauconda.

• $300,000 for exterior siding at the Adlai E. Stevenson home in Mettawa, which is on the National Register of Historic Places and designated as a National Historic Landmark.

The only project that had not been previously vetted is $300,000 to stabilize 500 feet of eroding shoreline on Long Lake at the Grant Woods Forest Preserve in Ingleside.

Others, like $400,000 to replace the clay tile roof at the Brushwood Center at Edward L. Ryerson Woods Conservation Area in Riverwoods, is in the district's capital budget.

"This would essentially be budget relief so we can get to other projects," Kovach said.

Article Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.