It has been a long time coming but the signs are good that a real and viable mixed-use development project is coming to Lake Street in River Forest. It has taken well more than a decade, overcoming obstacles ranging from complex environmental contamination to a teeth-rattling recession to a developer who just never got traction. But an actual proposal is headed to River Forest’s Development Review Board for consideration.

There should not be many surprises. The village government is effectively a partner in this project having devoted more than $1 million in TIF funds to clean up the dry cleaning chemicals, long leeching from the site. And the broad outline of the project — new residents upstairs, restaurant and retail space on the ground floor — have been spelled out in every request for proposal.

This time, Marty Paris, a son of River Forest, the actual son of Frank Paris, former village president and architect of all positive development on Lake over a quarter century, is heading the development project. 

Time to go to work.

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