Archive for the ‘Lake’ Category


The governor announced Monday that Lake County will receive $30 million in funding for over a dozen projects that aim to reduce stormwater flooding in the county.

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker joined legislators, community leaders and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity at Cristo Rey St. Martin College Prep School in Waukegan Monday morning.

Funded by the American Rescue Plan Act through the FY22 state funding bill, work on 14 projects throughout Lake County is set to begin this year.

Pritzker said the critical projects aim to address stormwater runoff that causes flooding and can carry pollutants into waterways such as lakes, streams and wetlands.

“Lake County is renowned for its natural beauty – but the waterways that make this region such a great place to live require high quality, efficient infrastructure,” Pritzker said.

“That’s why Rebuild Illinois is investing over $800 million to Lake County alone. By combining federal, state, and local resources – we can truly fulfill that responsibility, and in turn, strengthen and revitalize all of Illinois’ communities,” he said.

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Grow Lake County

Lake County residents have a new online tool to seek out locally grown produce, farm-to-table businesses and more after the relaunch of the interactive Grow Lake County website.

The website maps 87 environmentally conscious organizations and businesses, from Adam’s Acres Organics, a Grayslake-area farm specializing in organic greens and vegetables, to Zin Gastro Pub, a Lake Zurich restaurant that locally sources 80% of its ingredients.

The relaunched map, which can be found at growlakecounty.org, coincides with the beginning of the spring growing season and farmers markets, a time when people are most interested and able to access local foods, according to the Lake County Community Foundation. The foundation funds the Grow Lake County website with two partner organizations.

The map will lead residents to 18 farmers markets, 15 farm stands, 11 community gardens and two Community Supported Agriculture Programs, or CSAs, where residents can subscribe to receive regular produce from local farms.

The website also provides information on how residents can plan their own garden or get involved in the county’s community of local food producers.

More here.

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flint creek

Lake Barrington officials are hoping to get federal funds to clean up Flint Lake and parts of Flint Creek through the $1.2 trillion infrastructure improvement package enacted late last year.

Erosion, sediment deposits, invasive plants and other problems have reduced water quality in both waterways, Village Administrator Karen Daulton Lange said.

The village, community groups and the Lake County Forest Preserve District have worked to restore the creek and lake and protect the land around them. But more efforts are needed, including a potentially costly U.S. Army Corps of Engineers study to determine possible solutions, village officials said.

Historically, such studies require local agencies to share the cost of the work. Lake Barrington’s share would have been more than it could afford, Daulton Lange said.

Under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act President Joe Biden signed into law in November, however, the U.S. government could fully bankroll a study and any subsequent improvements.

“This is huge,” Daulton Lange said.

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A Flock Safety license plate reader camera uses a proprietary algorithm to identify a license plate, vehicle make, type and color.

Lake County officials want to know more about how data is used before determining whether automatic license plate readers should be allowed on county-owned highway rights of way.

Members of the county board’s public works, transportation and planning committee agree high-speed cameras can help law enforcement but are wary of unintended consequences involving potential privacy issues.

“There are some concerns of who has access to this information and when,” said committee member John Wasik of Grayslake.

“Our responsibility is things are not always used as intended,” said committee member Ann Maine of Lincolnshire.

The high-speed, computer-controlled cameras capture license plate numbers, location, date and time, a photograph of the vehicle, the driver and/or passengers.

In early October, the county staff was directed to study the possibility of allowing readers to be installed along several county highways in Zion’s municipal limit. The city already has readers in its jurisdiction and wants to add more.

“The push to our community is to improve the safety of citizens by using technology,” Zion police Chief Eric Barden told the committee.

Several other communities also have notified the Lake County Division of Transportation they are considering using the readers, according to Shane Schneider, director of transportation and county engineer.

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Related:Libertyville police planning license plate readers at five locations

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Ansel Adams

A nationally acclaimed exhibition, “Ansel Adams: Early Works,” is running at the Bess Bower Dunn Museum of Lake County, 1899 W. Winchester Road in Libertyville, Illinois, from November 6, 2021 through March 27, 2022. The exhibition features more than 40 original photographs. The exhibition is organized by art2art Circulating Exhibitions LLC.

All photographs are from the private collection of Michael Mattis and Judith Hochberg. Support for this exhibition was provided by Dan and Shirley Mayworm and a grant from the Preservation Foundation, the charitable partner of the Lake County Forest Preserves.

Museum admission for residents is $6 for adults, $3 for seniors, $3 for youth ages 4–17, free for children ages 3 and under. Nonresident admission is $10 for adults, $6 for seniors and youth.

For more information, contact 847.968.3400 or Dunn@LCFPD.org

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Health officials say a Lake County (Spring Grove) resident in his 80s died after being exposed to a rabid bat last month. It is the first human case of rabies in Illinois since the 1950s.

Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed the diagnosis after testing at its lab.

A man in his 80s, who resided in Lake County, awoke to a bat on his neck in mid-August, according to the Lake County Health Department.

The bat was captured and tested positive for rabies, health officials said.

Wildlife experts also found a bat colony in the man’s home.

The man was advised he needed to start postexposure rabies treatment, but he declined.

One month later, the man started to experience symptoms consistent with rabies, including neck pain, headache, difficulty controlling his arms, finger numbness and difficulty speaking, health officials said.

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Outdoor concerts at Buffalo Creek Brewing will include the Lake County Symphony Orchestra on Sept. 17.

Buffalo Creek Brewing and the Lake County Symphony Orchestra are proud to announce ongoing concerts in historic downtown Long Grove.

On the heels of the success of the July 3 “American Salute,” where the spacious Buffalo Creek Brewing beer garden was packed full, the Lake County Symphony Orchestra will open its regular season at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 17, with “Broadway & Hollywood Blockbusters.”

Featuring the music of “West Side Story,” “South Pacific,” “Wicked,” “Porgy and Bess,” “The Sound of Music,” and John Williams’ premiere orchestral suite from “Star Wars,” music will fill the evening sky for the whole family. Musical theater singers Chris and Donna Engelhardt, will be featured in the Broadway medleys.

Guests can enjoy food from Smokin’ T’s, freshly hard-crafted Buffalo Creek Brewing beer, and Lake County’s only professional orchestra.

Tickets are $20; free for children 12 and younger. Purchase tickets at www.lakecountysymphonyorchestra.com.

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53 Greenway

First came the Illinois Prairie Path, one of the first rail-to-trail conversions in the United States. Later, The 606 trail in Chicago attracted crowds of bikers and runners and led to skyrocketing nearby property values. Now, a group of conservationists and elected officials in Lake County are pushing to turn a former proposed tollway corridor into a greenway — a trail through a long, narrow nature preserve.

Illinois lawmakers recently approved a resolution calling for a task force to study alternate uses for the proposed extension of Illinois Route 53 in the northwest suburbs. The effort picks up where Illinois tollway officials left off in 2019 when they dropped plans for the road.

Believers in the project cite it as an example of a popular trend away from highways and greenhouse gas emissions, and toward preservation of natural areas. Critics see it as a boondoggle for a relatively small number of people, rather than a project that could have served 100,000 drivers a day and spurred economic development.

While Republicans traditionally have supported road projects, the resolution passed unanimously in both chambers, suggesting growing bipartisan support for nature paths.

“These become beloved spaces where diverse residents, young and old, flock to get fresh air, walk, bike, and share a moment with each other,” said Gerald Adelmann, president and CEO of the nonprofit Openlands conservation group. “This is our moment to create that kind of legacy for our communities.”

Road builders see it differently. Mike Sturino, president of the Illinois Road and Transportation Builders Association, cited widespread past support for the expressway.

“The majority of working people suffer when you pull the plug on needed infrastructure,” Sturino said. “I like bike lanes, but we have to be realistic. It’s shocking when respectable officials are browbeaten by a radical fringe to go along with this reckless move.”

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REAs people spent more time at home for the past 14 months and some segments of the economy fractured, residential real estate in Lake County began to experience a boom which continues as buyers scramble to find the right home.

“We had our best month in history in June, and it’s been uphill since then,” said Lynn Kosner, the managing broker of Baird & Warner’s Highland Park office.

“We’re getting between five and eight multiple offers on average, and the homes are selling above list price,” added Marty Golden, a broker with HomeSmart Connect, focusing on Waukegan, Gurnee, Zion and Wadsworth.

Single-family home values have increased 16.2% across Lake County for the year ending April 30, as people both move from Chicago or seek bigger suburban homes. Both want room to both work and recreate at home because of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

A survey of 16 Lake County towns — from Barrington to Zion, and Highland Park to Wauconda — showed the value of a single-family home in the county rose from $357,440 to $426,640, according to a report from the North Shore Barrington Association of Realtors.

Reasons given for the boom by real estate brokers in various parts of the county — whether buyers are spending more than $1 million on average in Lake Forest, $624,657 in Barrington, $386,470 in Buffalo Grove or $166,917 in Waukegan — are similar.

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Barrington officials are ready to weigh in on the idea of Lake County allowing the sale of recreational cannabis in unincorporated parts of the county.

The Lake County Zoning Board of Appeals is scheduled to hold virtual public hearings April 19 and April 21 to provide information and gather feedback about the possibility of allowing recreational cannabis dispensaries in unincorporated areas, Barrington officials discussed during the April 5 Village Board Committee of the Whole meeting.

The county issued a one-year moratorium in February 2020 prohibiting all cannabis-related businesses in the county’s unincorporated areas. The temporary ban expired Feb. 10. – around the time discussions on the subject began again.

County board members approved a resolution at their Feb. 9 meeting to begin the public hearing process to get input on potential regulations to allow recreation use cannabis businesses, including growers, distributors and retail establishments in unincorporated Lake County – with certain restrictions, according to a recent news release.

Barrington Village President Karen Darch is not sure the county currently can allow cannabis dispensaries. However, “I know they say they want to talk about,” she said. There is a state bill pending that could allow it, she said.

She said the reason she brought up the issue at the Committee of the Whole meeting was to get trustees’ feedback on issuing a statement about the idea. Barrington’s zoning ordinances don’t allow recreational cannabis dispensaries, but the village is adjacent to unincorporated Lake County areas where the county could end up allowing those uses, Darch said.

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