On September 22, the development of The Preserve of Highland Park took a significant step forward as the Park District of Highland Park Board of Commissioners awarded a construction contract for $1,204,290 to Team REIL Inc. of Union IL, following a competitive bid process. Construction is scheduled to begin in October.
Among the amenities planned are a pond overlook, gardens, seating areas, play areas, and signage. New and improved pathways will be installed to lead visitors smoothly through green lawns, wet meadows, short grass prairie habitat, and restored woodlands. Existing pathways already connect the community to the Recreation Center, the Golf Learning Center, Skokie River Woods, and links to neighborhoods and downtown Highland Park.
Earlier this year, the Park District received a $400,000 Open Space Land Acquisition and Development (OSLAD) grant from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources that will be used for trail development, park amenities, landscaping, and signage at The Preserve.
The Park District also received a $144,672 grant for shoreline restoration of the North Pond and enhanced plantings for swales on the property made available through the Lake County Stormwater Management Commission. Funding for this portion of the project is provided, in part, by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency through Section 319 of the Clean Water Act.
In 2018, through intergovernmental cooperation with the City of Highland Park, the Park District took ownership of the 100-acre property and began transitioning it into a passive recreational open space. The project was an initiative of the GreenPrint 2024master plan and meets the Highland Park community’s desire for additional outdoor and passive recreation opportunities.
For more information on the project, click here.
Funding for this project is provided in part by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency through Section 319 of the Clean Water Act.