Oak Park village manager travels into a sink hole

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By Marty Stempniak

Staff Reporter

Back in February, people living near Oak Park and River Forest High School started noticing collapsing concrete in the street, in what turned out to be a sinkhole forming at Erie and Scoville. Fast forward to today, and Village Manager Tom Barwin decided to travel down into the sewers to see the problem up close.

Apparently a piece of the “relief drain,” 30 feet under the street, collapsed, according to Barwin’s blog, missionmainstreet.tumblr.com. Oak Park is paying a company $165,000 to try and tackle the problem, and Barwin wanted to inspect the relief drain himself to make sure that the repairs were really worth the hefty price tag.

After venturing into the sewers, Barwin wrote, he gained more respect for the people who work down there.

“The unheralded men who do this type of construction work certainly deserve our respect, appreciation, and decent pay,” he wrote. “These are challenging and dangerous jobs requiring care, caution, strength and no fear of confined spaces.”

Click here to read the rest of Barwin’s blog.

Reader Comments

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OP Resident  

Posted: April 18th, 2011 11:20 AM

Shouldn't Asst. Village Manager Rob Cole be standing behind Barwin holding a "Mission Accomplished" banner?

sinkhole caption  

Posted: April 16th, 2011 3:29 PM

The Illinois Attorney General extracts Tom Barwin from yet another undisclosed village board executive session meeting site. Village Attorney Heise defends the village board by stating he posted a public notice in sidewalk chalk, and left the manhole cover open a crack for the public to attend.

sooperdooper from oak Park  

Posted: April 15th, 2011 5:18 PM

Funny Barwin diden't see any rats down there. I see a great big white one.

sinking feeling  

Posted: April 15th, 2011 9:30 AM

Given the fact that the village has an engineering staff, why is the village manager micro-managing this issue? Can't help but getting that sinking feeling that Mr. Barwin is looking for more fodder for his blog, which has turned into a village-funded venue for his personal ideologies and self-promotion.


Posted: April 14th, 2011 10:42 PM

Nice to hear Barwin wants "the unheralded men" (maybe he forgot to mention the women)"who do this job to get the recognition and pay" Is this the same Barwin who couldn't negotiate a contract with the Oak Park Firefighters for four years? How about the Oak Park Police Officers who now are in mediation trying to get a fair contract? Nice publicity stunt Barwin. Put a lid on it.

H Youngman  

Posted: April 14th, 2011 9:32 PM

Caption - After being unable to negotiate a purchase price on his Village owned home, Barwin is showm housing within his price range.

Too Easy from Oak Park  

Posted: April 14th, 2011 5:20 PM

Wow...there's way too many opportunities for humorous analogies to list here. But by all means let's try, shall we??

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