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What Should the Village do With the Charrington Dam Property?

Frankfort officials laid out four plans for the 33 acres of land at a recent public forum.

At a public forum held Wednesday, Feb. 8, Mayor Jim Holland, village environmental specialist Nicole Specht and several other village officials heard from residents about what potentially to do with the Charrington Dam property, which is about 33 acres of mostly wetlands and prairie.

Before a large crowd, Specht outlined four plans that could be implemented for the property: passive open space, active open space, a public park or leaving it alone. Specht said the village will do what the residents want with the space.

Turning the area into a passive or active open space would mean removing all invasive species on the land and reintroducing about 75 natural species of plants. A passive open space would mean no one would be allowed on the land, while an active open space would mean people could use village-funded paths on the land.

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Residents in attendance at the meeting said they were in favor of removing some undesirable plants from the area, but they would like to see it remain mainly unchanged, keeping favorable trees in place. Residents also said walking paths and a possible playground were not something they were interested in.

Village Administrator Jerry Ducay said any plan for the land would seek grant money and other funding, although he added money will be put into the coming year's budget for some work to be done to the land.

Holland said any plans the village comes up with for the land will be presented to residents in another public forum before being implemented.

YOUR TURN: What do you think the village should do with the Charrington Dam property? Take our poll and share your ideas in the comments section.

Pamela Biesen February 13, 2012 at 04:41 PM
The meeting was held on Feb 22nd of what year?
Joe Vince February 13, 2012 at 05:37 PM
@Pamela Biesen: That was a typo. It was Feb. 8. Joe Vince Local Editor, Frankfort
Nature Lover February 13, 2012 at 07:23 PM
The homeowners in attendance received a special notification to attend this meeting delivered to their doors. (I saw the meeting notice in the newspaper.) As expected, this group of homeowners voiced their NIMBY opinions. They believe removing invasive species, adding a walking trail, fishing pier, and park benches would invite crime and destruction. (Didn't folks say the same thing when they were planning the Plank Trail?) I do not believe their beliefs. I think adding a nature trail to our neighborhood can only enhance the great area we live in. Even though we are fortunate to live so close to the Plank Trail, I look forward to taking a peaceful stroll on the Charrington nature trail, enjoying the lake, native plants, listening and watching birds, and at the same time, not having to keep an eye out for enthusiastic bicyclists or roller bladers. Imagine sitting on the quiet (proposed) pier overlooking the lake and reading a book or dropping a line in the lake in hopes of catching "Walter". I am hopeful that our administrators will keep an open mind and do what is right for our entire neighborhood and add the Charrington Nature Trail to the growing list of assets in our village.

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