Mo­kena re­ceives $380K grant for new Whis­per Creek park

Daily Southtown (Sunday) - - NEWS - By Ali­cia Fab­bre Ali­cia Fab­bre is a free­lance re­porter for the Daily Southtown.

Whis­per Creek sub­di­vi­sion in Mo­kena will be get­ting a new park soon.

Mo­kena Com­mu­nity Park District re­cently re­ceived a $380,000 state grant to de­velop a 6.5 acre par­cel into a park. The project was one of 75 se­lected this year for an Open Space Land Ac­qui­si­tion De­vel­op­ment grant from the Illi­nois De­part­ment of Nat­u­ral Re­sources.

“This helps to in­crease the speed of be­ing able to de­liver this park to this area,” said Mike Selep, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the park district.

The park, ex­pected to cost $760,000, will in­clude a hand­i­cap ac­ces­si­ble play­ground, bas­ket­ball cir­cle, gazebo, a quar­ter-mile walk­ing trail with ex­er­cise sta­tions and a large open space for out­door sport­ing ac­tiv­i­ties. Con­struc­tion is ex­pected to be­gin this fall and be com­pleted by fall of 2021. The park district will cover the re­main­ing $380,000 cost of the project.

Last fall, park of­fi­cials held two meet­ings and sought pub­lic in­put to help de­ter­mine what res­i­dents wanted in the new park. Selep said the district tried to in­cor­po­rate as many of those ideas as pos­si­ble. For ex­am­ple, in­stead of a full bas­ket­ball court, the district opted for a bas­ket­ball cir­cle fol­low­ing res­i­dent in­put.

Selep said that the park district also ini­tially was con­sid­er­ing a sand vol­ley­ball court for the park, but dropped those plans when res­i­dents asked for other fea­tures in­stead.

Res­i­dents did sup­port a pic­nic area, large open space, the ac­ces­si­ble play­ground and a walk­ing path with ex­er­cise sta­tions. The ex­er­cise sta­tions will fea­ture out­door equip­ment that will al­low for some car­dio or weight train­ing ex­er­cises, Selep said

“We’re just re­ally grate­ful to all the in­di­vid­u­als who came out and par­ti­ci­apted in our com­mu­nity meet­ings,” he said, not­ing they re­ceived in­put from about 100 peo­ple.

The park, lo­cated off Re­gan Road and Whis­per Creek Way in the Whis­per Creek sub­di­vi­sion, will be the district’s 22nd park. The park district still needs ap­proval from the vil­lage for the park, and plans to sched­ule ad­di­tional meet­ings to keep res­i­dents in­formed about the project.

DE­SIGN PER­SPEC­TIVES

This ren­der­ing of a pro­posed Whis­per Creek park in Mo­kena was used to ap­ply for an Open Space Land Ac­qui­si­tion De­vel­op­ment grant from the state.

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