The Village of Oak Park | 123 Madison St.  Oak Park, IL 60302 | village@oak-park.us

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Village Manager's Weekly Report

Week Ending April 28, 2017

Meetings scheduled for the next week:

  • Monday, May 1:
    • CDCAC, 6:00 p.m., room 101
    • Village Board Regular Meeting, 7:30 p.m., room 201
  • Tuesday, May 2:
    • Environmental & Energy Commission, 7 p.m., room 130
    • HPC Education Committee, 7:30 p.m., room 215
  • Wednesday, May 3:
    • Citizen Involvement Commission
    • Zoning Board of Appeals, 7 p.m., room 201
  • Thursday, May 4:
    • No meetings scheduled  
  • Friday, May 5:
    • No meetings scheduled

Swearing-in ceremony – The community will welcome newly elected officials and thank those departing at a ceremony set to begin at 7:30 p.m., Mon., May 1, in the Council Chamber at Village Hall. Saying goodbye will be Trustee Colette Lueck, who joined the Village Board in 2008, Trustee Peter Barber, who served one term, and Trustee Glen Brewer, who served two terms. Village Clerk Teresa Powell, first elected in 2009, also will be departing. Newly elected officials scheduled to be sworn in Monday evening include trustees Deno J. Andrews, Simone M. Boutet and Dan Moroney, as well as newly elected Village Clerk Vicki Scaman. The current board first will adopt a resolution proclaiming the results of the election, followed by remarks from the departing and mid-term officials. New officials will then be sworn in and take their seats at the dais.

Arbor Day activities – The Village's Forestry Division joined the Park District to celebrate Arbor Day with a series of events and activities held this Friday at the Oak Park Conservatory. In addition to giving away tree seedlings and offering nature crafts for preschoolers, Village Forester Rob Sproule offered advice and answered questions about tree care. Members of the Community Design Commission also were in Rehm Park and Austin Gardens placing tags on trees that explain some of the benefits of these living resources. The information tags were provided by the Morton Arboretum.

Earth Fest report – The eighth annual Earth Fest held last Saturday attracted more than 800 visitors to the Public Works Center. Residents of all ages turned out to engage with the dozens of vendors and organizations that were offering hands-on activities, information, free samples and green goods for sale. Participants also got a behind-the-scenes look at what goes into the Public Works Department’s service delivery operations with tours of the LEED Gold-certified facility. The tours included the beehives on the building’s green roof and an up-close look at the Village’s big trucks and other equipment.

Disability resource guide available – As part of its efforts to help people with disabilities lead proud and productive lives, the citizen volunteers on the Disability Access Commission worked with the Communications Department to compile and produce a handy guide to programs and services available locally. The guide focuses on services offered by local governments and agencies with offices in the Village or that provide services to Oak Park residents. The guide is available for review, downloading and printing at  www.oak-park.us/disabilityresources. Copies also will be available at Village Hall and other community venues.

Free legal assistance offered – Oak Park Township Senior Services has partnered with the Center for Disability & Elder Law to provide senior citizens and people with disabilities free assistance preparing advance directive legal documents such as power of attorney of health care and property or a living will.  Appointments are available every second and fourth Tuesday of the month. Income and residency requirements apply. Residents can call 708.383.8060 or email seniors@oakparktownship.or  for more formation or to make an appointment.

Downtown construction update –Comcast is scheduled to begin installing a fiber optic line next week to serve the Emerson development and nearby businesses downtown. Work will involve trenching through the Marion Street and North Boulevard intersection and boring under parking lot 10 just north of North Boulevard. The work is scheduled to be completed by May 12.

Lake Street improvements meeting – As planning continues for Lake Street improvements, members of the project team will meet with representatives of Hemingway District business next week to discuss plans and schedules. The meeting is set for 5 to 6:30 p.m., Wed., May 3, in the Veterans Room of the main Public Library. Information on the project is posted online at www.oak-park.us/lakestreetimprovements.

Chicago Avenue streetscape – Removal and replacement of the concrete curbs and gutters is underway at various locations on the final section of the Chicago Avenue resurfacing project between Harlem and Belleforte avenues. All spot sewer repairs and most of the lighting improvements have been completed on both sides of the street. Work is set to begin next week on the permanent street striping remaining from last year’s work. Engineering Division staff is continuing to keep area business operators updated on the progress and any specific impacts.

Water and sewer improvements – Sewer replacement is underway this week on Taylor Avenue between Harrison and Flournoy streets. Water main replacement is scheduled to begin once the sewer main work is completed, which should be next week.

Alley improvements– Underground drainage improvements continued this week on alley segments set to be reconstructed in this round, while pavement removal began on the alley north of Division Street between East and Fair Oaks avenues. Two dozen residents within the project’s boundaries have opted to have their private garage aprons replaced as their alleys are reconstructed, allowing them to take advantage of the Village’s contract unit price. 

Public Works activities – Street Division crews completed brick repair at 12 Chicago Ave. following a vehicle accident that knocked down a street light pole, which had to be repaired. Crews also repaired a street opening at Austin Boulevard and Lake Street following a water main break and completed installing speed bumps in various designated alleys.  In addition to repairing the water main break at Austin and Lake, Water & Sewer Division crews also cleared street catch basins and sewer inlets at various locations throughout the Village to ensure proper functioning during heavy rain. Forestry Division crews began installing watering bags on trees planted in the fall and delivered compost to program participants. Meanwhile, forestry contractors continued removing problem trees in various parts of the community.