Nearly $ 20 Million Proposed to Improve Chicago Parks, Including Campsites in Big Marsh | Chicago News


(Courtesy of the Friends of Big Marsh)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot has proposed nearly $ 20 million in Chicago Park District improvement projects, the majority of which would be paid for with Incremental Tax Funding (TIF) dollars.

The measures were introduced at Wednesday’s city council meeting and are now awaiting approval. Among the big items is $ 10 million TIF funding for the modernization of the Riis Park sports complex in Belmont Cragin, to coincide with the construction of a 90,000 square foot addition that will serve as an elementary school for the public schools of Chicago. CPS will pay for the school. The Chicago Park District Council accepted the arrangement in January.

Another $ 1.5 million aid from TIF would be directed to Big Marsh Park in South Deering, for the construction of 12 camping platforms and a three-mile trail. City funds are augmented by a state grant of $ 900,000.

Also proposed by the mayor: $ 2 million in TIF funds for new equipment and the resurfacing of 10 playgrounds across the city.

A breakdown of additional projects and associated funding includes:

– Ridge Park, 1817 W. 96th St., Beverly. Country house improvements totaling $ 1.5 million: $ 1 million in TIF dollars; $ 500,000 from a grant from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

– Peter Fosco Park, 1312 S. Racine Ave., Near West Side. Country house renovations and installation of a pool dehumidification system, totaling $ 1.5 million in TIF dollars.

– Hermosa Park, 2240 avenue N. Kilbourn, Hermosa. Pavilion repairs and new lighting of the ball field; $ 650,000 in TIF dollars.

– Theodore Roosevelt Park, 62 W. Roosevelt Road, south loop. Various upgrades including resurfacing of tennis courts, new benches and trail lighting; $ 400,000 in TIF dollars.

– John Clark Park, 4615 W. Jackson Blvd., Austin. Improvements and repairs to swimming pools; $ 500,000 in TIF dollars.

– John Donovan Park, 3620 S. Lituanica Ave., Bridgeport. The $ 1.5 million cost of expanding the park onto 0.5 acre of nearby land is covered by a combination of TIF dollars, open space impact fees, 11th Quarter Alderman funds and park district money.

Contact Patty Wetli: @pattywetli | (773) 509-5623 | [email protected]


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