I am an owner of 1111 South Blvd., an attorney who has located my practice in Oak Park for over 22 years, a pioneer investor in the South/Marion area and president of the South/Marion Association.
I strongly urge the village board to accept the recommendations of the citizens' Superblock Steering Committee. This was a committee of concerned individuals appointed by the board. They gave an enormous amount of their time and effort over the past three months, holding meetings almost every week to get the pulse of the residents and business community for the future of Downtown Oak Park. This was the type of citizen involvement many of the trustees campaigned for and claim to want to foster and encourage.
I support the Steering Committee plan, but even if I didn't, I would still urge the board to accept their recommendations. To arbitrarily disregard their work sends a distinct message that the board doesn't care for thoughtful and reasoned input if it may be contrary to its initial position.
If the board disregards the committee's work and effort, it is stating to everyone that they should not waste their time getting involved in the village because no matter how much effort they invest, there is a high probability that their work will not only be ignored but they will be told that there findings are meritless and not worthy of consideration.
All of the trustees' campaign rhetoric and promises of "open government" and "citizen involvement" will be seen as nothing more than lip service and typical political hackism.
I've put my money where my mouth is by investing in this community, and I intend to continue to work to make this a viable community for residents and businesses.
I again urge the trustees to adopt the Steering Committee findings and lead Oak Park into a brighter future.