Ideas Coming for Downtown Beautification

Task force will see first drawings next month with a public open house to follow in November.

Sketches of a pedestrian and environmentally friendly plan for what the Village has dubbed the Northwest Quadrant of downtown Deerfield will be ready for public viewing by the middle of November, according to Principal Planner Jeff Ryckart.

The Village decided a little over a year ago to develop a master plan for the area bounded by Deerfield Road on the south, Waukegan Road on the east, Hazel Avenue on the north and the railroad tracks on the west.

“We want to make use of the open space as a place for people to walk, bike and enjoy,” Village Trustee Tom Jester said. Jester is chairing the task force charged with developing the master plan. “We have it to be something much more inclusive and attractive for a greater number of people.”

That beautification could include artwork and other attractive features. “There could be public art and water features,” Ryckart said. “It will all come out in the design process.”

Though the first renderings are due next month, this is a long term project that could take a number of years to come to full fruition. “The master plan will serve us for the next 20 years,” Ryckart said.

The task force includes the stakeholders in the project including the Village, the Deerfield Park District, route: {:controller=>"listings", :action=>"show", :id=>"deerfield-park-district"} -->, the , the

RB September 20, 2012 at 12:23 PM
Each quadrant has issues. Southwest? They allowed a car wash and a parking lot that is the center piece. Southeast? They allowed a second floor company take over the retail parking spaces and run several businesses from town. They actually made customers park across the parking lot and allowed office employees to park in front of retail stores and restaurants all day. Second floor company? Gone! Northeast? That park on the corner? Weeds! So, my suggestion is that the separate quadrant idea does not work. There is no cohesive plan and you can tell. Past quadrant planning has not worked. Also, parks don't pay taxes and need ongoing maintenance, and we need tax revenue. Make the Northwest quadrant a revenue producer, not an ongoing expense we can no longer afford. Just sayin.
RonnieTheLimoDriver September 20, 2012 at 01:30 PM
Well said, RB. “There could be public art and water features." When I read public art and water features, I hear ca-ching! I see money coming out of my pocket and going down the drain in that water. I don't hear a lot of people complaining that Deerfield needs more public art and water features. What I do here is people desperate for a plan to address our rapidly dwindling sources of sales tax revenue. What I also hear is people looking for fiscally responsible leadership from the village. This project is like the underpass to nowhere x50. If any of these trustees are interested in re-election, they will understand the priorities of the voters and act accordingly. We need to expand our revenue base not increase our cost structure.
Bringin' Down Briarwood September 20, 2012 at 02:47 PM
This is a joke, right? There are many areas in Deerfield that need to be better used as places to walk. bike and play. The area described is ABSOLUTELY THE LAST PLACE that needs this focus. Geez, it's like the mayor, village manager and trustees don't even live here. They're so out of touch. The decision-making is sometimes just awful. And now for months, we'll have to listen to the guys out here who don't want any money invested in anything. But in this case, they're right.
Bringin' Down Briarwood September 20, 2012 at 02:54 PM
By the way, anybody want to speculate what the real meaning of "more inclusive" is? Anybody really feeling shut out of Jewett Park lately? I'll keep my mouth shut on this one for a while, but it does concern me that I think quite a few decisions in this town are not done for the village as a whole and its future, but for this segment of the electorate.
DeerfieldResident September 20, 2012 at 03:01 PM
Where's the task force designated to improving the retail climate in Deerfield? The team of village employees, trustees and residents working to attract new business to the area? Until that happens, please stop wasting money on this nonsense.
Violet Flemenbaum September 20, 2012 at 04:13 PM
Agreed. I live in this quadrant and I was baffled by this. I think Jewett Park takes up most of the space within the boundaries mentioned. Otherwise, you have homes and the train tracks. Where the heck is this supposed artwork supposed to go?
Jarlwm September 20, 2012 at 05:03 PM
What are you going to do about the houses that are on Hazel that butt up to the park? Buy them up and tear them down? Where's the money coming from for that.
RB September 20, 2012 at 05:33 PM
Every house or commercial building torn down for parks removes them from the tax rolls. Also, if the Village develops these art and water features are they going to take care of them? 'They' cost us money. Is this going to be park district property or Village property? Im guessing Village Property. Here we go again. We'll have a 'park' that is not part of the Park District which is a whole different taxing body with their own lawn mowers and workers going one way while Village workers and Village mowers go the other. I'm all for investing wisely in the future of Deerfield. Let's start by getting rid of the layers of taxing bodies and no more new parks for awhile. We need revenue production or the revenue is going to come in the form of property tax increases for those of us still remaining here.
Walter White September 20, 2012 at 05:41 PM
I know people, including me, have said it's time to clean house on the board, but my God, it needs to be done NOW!
NB September 20, 2012 at 10:22 PM
The caucus nominating season is about to kick into gear. Anyone who wants to run for office, now's the time. Get in front of the caucus, or run as an indie and skip it and spend your time knocking on doors.


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