Mount Prospect mayor touts economic momentum in State of Village address
New businesses, residences, police and fire headquarters, and a downtown pocket park were among the recent or imminent developments Mount Prospect Mayor Arlene Juracek touched on Thursday during her annual State of the Village address.
"The momentum we built through 2019 continues in 2020 with a disciplined, planned approach to managing our $130 million municipal corporation," she told members of the Mount Prospect Chamber of Commerce gathered for a luncheon at Victoria in the Park.
"We began strategic planning in earnest in 2013, and we have institutionalized strategic accountability throughout the village organization," she added. "We will be focused on how to achieve our Village Vision for years 2020 to 2025. We plan to complete a community survey and will host a citizen summit this year to ensure our strategic plan is aligned with our stakeholders."
Among the efforts on the near horizon are a public review of the redevelopment of Block 56 that includes the soon-to-be-vacated police and fire stations; work on the improvement of downtown traffic circulation; enhancing pedestrian safety with crossings at Main and Busse, Central and Emerson, and Central and Pine; and flood-control improvements at Burning Bush Trails and Aspen Trails parks.
Nearly 70% of the more than 100 milestones in the village's strategic plan are either completed or on track, with every priority item having made progress in the past year, Juracek said.
The private sector has invested $160 million into downtown improvements, and construction is now complete on 85 new residences at the 20 West project and the Park Terrace row homes. Construction is under way at the 10 North project at Central and Main, as well as the Maple Street Lofts.
The village will have 500 new residential units downtown, bringing more than 1,000 new residents to support local businesses, with minimal impact on school populations, Juracek said. This will cause a positive impact on the tax increment financing district, with the four residential projects generating $27.7 million over the TIF district's life.
Projects that began in the past couple of years across the village have generated more than $250 million in new equalized assessed value, she added.
Mount Prospect will dedicate the new Edwin and Else Meyn Busse Pocket Park downtown in April, the new fire headquarters in May, the new police headquarters in June and the Maple Street parking deck in August. The village also will honor its diversity at the Celebration of Cultures in September, Juracek said.
The business-oriented audience at the luncheon was advised that the village, too, is keeping its eye on the impact on new development investment that may be caused by recent changes in commercial real estate assessments. Because the impacts of these reassessments are all relative to each other, their overall effect won't be known until the second -installment tax bills arrive, Juracek said.
"2020 will be a year of challenges and opportunities, but it will also be a year of accomplishments," Juracek said. "We cannot reach any of this alone. It's your community support that keeps us moving forward."