The residents of Oak Park soon will have an opportunity to share ideas for the future parks throughout Oak Park and Lindberg Park in particular.

On Sept. 11, the Park District of Oak Park board will host a community meeting to find out what the residents want to include in its strategic plan. And on Sept 12, the park district will hold a meeting about Lindberg Park, giving residents an opportunity to comment on the improvements made so far and suggest future improvements. 

Both meetings will be held at Cheney Mansion, 220 N. Euclid Ave., at 7 p.m. Park district officials encourage all interested residents to review plans on their website. A link to the Park District Strategic Plan 2016-18 can be found at www.pdop.org/about/about-us while a link to the Lindberg Park plan can be found at www.pdop.org/about/park-facility-improvements.

The 2016-18 strategic plan was an outgrowth of the park district’s 2015-24 master plan, which set guidelines for policies, operations and capital improvements. The strategic plan focuses on goals and priorities for a shorter, three-year period. With the 2016-18 plan coming to an end, the park district is developing the new plan for 2019-21. 

The park district will try to forge a plan to improve parks and facilities while taking into account Oak Park’s current economic, demographic and environmental realities and projected trends. Every strategic plan includes a public outreach component, which is where the Sept. 11 meeting comes in. 

The Park District of Oak Park also creates plans for individual parks. The plans suggest potential improvements and other changes, though the way they are implemented depends on how much money the district has and what kind of grants and other outside funding it can secure.

The original Lindberg Park master plan was developed in 2010, and the park was renovated in 2015. The park district tries to review the parks and facilities master plans at least once every 10 years.

Diane Stanke, park district’s director of marketing and customer service, said while her there are no funds set aside for Lindberg Park capital improvements at this time, they are interested to hear resident suggestions for smaller improvements that may not require as much money.

And, if the residents do want to suggest the capital improvements, the park district will save those suggestions and take them into account when putting together future capital projects budgets.

Stanke said that residents who aren’t able to make those meetings can submit comments by email to Diane.Stanke@podp.org.

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