Park District Breaks Ground on "Jewel of Glen Ellyn" Master Plan

Conservation Design Forum and Farr Associates have completed the Lake Ellyn Boathouse & Park Improvements Master Plan


The design and planning phases are complete and construction has begun on the $2.9 million Lake Ellyn Boathouse restoration project designed by Conservation Design Forum and Farr Associates.


The below project description provided by the Glen Ellyn Park District summarizes the importance of the park facility within the community and the planning process which enabled the project to move forward despite suspension of the state-administered OSLAD grant program in 2015.


Nestled among hundreds of beautiful trees and foliage, Lake Ellyn Park serves the community in a variety of ways – a peaceful and tranquil place to read and relax; a playground to bring your children and grandchildren; a gathering spot to have a family picnic or meet friends; pathways to incorporate your daily walk or run into; a lake to have your first fishing experience while in the winter a skating wonderland where one can speed skate, public skate or play hockey. Additionally it serves as a hub for major community events such as the annual Cardboard Regatta, Fourth of July fireworks, Jazz in the Park, Boo Bash and the Glen Ellyn Art’s Festival.

In spring, 2012, the Park Board of Commissioners made a commitment to develop a master plan for this beautiful and iconic setting. While on the surface the park appears in good shape, the property developed in the early 1900’s was in need of review and direction to enable it to prosper for the next 100 years. The boathouse was in need of renovations and the landscape and natural areas were in decline. Recognizing the significance and complexities of the property, the Park District hired the consulting firm of Conservation Design Forum (CDF) and Farr and Associates to develop a master plan that will provide guidance toward planning future improvements and usage. The consultant team was selected by a committee of citizens, board and staff from among many highly qualified firms. Its outstanding qualifications, experience in historic preservation and environmental restoration along with their impressive and relevant body of work, made them the unanimous choice for this project. 


Essential to the development of the master plan was community participation. To encourage public input, the planning process included stakeholder meetings; a questionnaire sent to specific stakeholders including the immediate neighborhood; several public meetings and planning charrettes; a website with up-to-date project information along with the opportunity to provide commentary and input. Over time, the plan was refined and redeveloped. As a result, the master plan presented is a reflection of the overall information received. It is important to respect that the master plan reflects the wants and needs of many as the park is a community property serving the over 35,000 residents.



Since approving the master plan formally, in January, 2013, the Park District has begun implementing elements based on available funds and priorities. Initial improvements included participating in the Lenox Road reconstruction and beginning to restore the Oak Savannah in the northwest area of the Park. During 2015 strategic planning and budget formulation, it was identified that the District through improved fiscal practices and generating operating surplus, was able to allocate nearly $3 million dollars to address some additional elements of the plan. Those include restoration of the boathouse and park improvements.


To read the Park District press release and view the complete project summary, go to: /xm_client/client_documents/lake-ellyn-park-improvements-phase-3.pdf



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