January 2003 Meeting Minutes

Horner Park Advisory Council
Meeting Minutes

Jerry Giese, as president, called the meeting to order at 7:35 p.m. Larry Brown acted as secretary for this meeting.

Previous Minutes: Anne Rozmin moved to accept the December minutes. The motion was seconded by Alan Mueller and was passed unanimously.

Treasurer’s Report: Elaine Taylor delivered the Treasurer’s report. The balances are as follows:

  • Checking Account: 1,690.48
  • Savings Account: 4,131.96
  • CD’s 0
  • Totals $ 5,822.44

The annual $ 1,500.00 grant for maintenance of the Henry Horner monument and garden was received from the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency.

Announcements: The Manor Garden Club will sponsor a pruning clinic in Manor Park on March 29, 2003 at 10:30 AM. This will be conducted by Glenn Grosch, who is both a College of DuPage professor and a member of the Chicago Botanical Society. A reminder from the Horner Park staff that the Daddy/Daughter and Mommy/Son Dance will once again be held on Valentines Day, February 14, 2003 at 7:00 PM in the field house. There will be a meeting by the CPD for concession permits.

Council Business: Plans for a new development of 53 town homes, to be located along the Chicago River across Irving Park Rd. from Horner Park was presented by Mark May, Vice President, Rezmar Corporation, the developer. Mr. May showed the Council architectural renderings of the property. The Council focused on two issues important to Horner Park. These issues were the appearance of the homes facing Horner Park and the thirty foot wide public easement along the Chicago River. The developments front, facing Horner Park, would have ornamental fencing and shrubs set back three feet from the sidewalk. Anne Rozmin proposed that the plans take in to account the oak savannah which lies directly across Irving Park Rd. The City of Chicago has mandated a public walkway to be along the Chicago River. This property would be owned by the residents of the development but would be a public pathway along the river. This drawing brought up three subjects relative to the Council. A conceptual drawing was shown which included trees and grasses to be along the pathway. Anne Rozmin advised Mark May that native plants would work better in this area and suggested contacting a landscape architect for ideas on low maintenance species. Laurene von Klan suggested that this property could be turned over to the CPD so as the upkeep would not be of concern to the future residents and would be easy for the CPD landscaping crews to work on this area while they are attending the adjoining CPD property, California Park. The developer also has no plans for the actual riverbank and plans on taking down the MWRD’s fence. The pathway shown on the drawing attaches to Irving Park Rd. There is a serious concern that this path will be leading pedestrians to cross Irving Park Rd. near the bridge to get to and from Horner Park. This safety issue must be addressed. The Council feels that the planned CDOT pedestrian underpass at Irving Park Rd. should be implemented in conjunction with this development. Jerry Giese suggested that Mark come back and attend the Council’s next meeting on February 5, 2003 to discuss these issues further.

Mark May stated that he will try to attend, however his company intends to take their plans to the Chicago Planning Committee before that date. It was agreed that the Council would meet January 22, 2003 to create and submit a letter of recommendations to Rezmar Corp. and any of those parties involved in the planning of this development. Friends of the Chicago River (FOCR) representative Cynthia Fox, presented a river stewardship program, Adopt-A-River. Cynthia asked the Council to consider joining this program. The Council will consider this at a later meeting.

Concert Committee: No report

Garden Committee: Susie Novak reported that she was unable to get all of the new bulbs planted in the planters. She will complete this project in the spring. Susie also informed the council that she believes that the perennial plants in the flower box on Sacramento Ave. have been ripped out. We will wait to see what comes up in spring before making any decisions regarding this issue.

Park Briefs: Terry Sweeney, Park Supervisor and Dale Marie Grandys, North Region Supervisor, were representing the Horner Park Staff and CPD.

Ravenswood Manor Park: Larry Hodak brought to the attention of the Horner Park staff that the Wildlife Garden in the park should not have been raked out this past fall. Dale Marie Grandys will instruct the maintenance staff to no longer work in the Wildlife Garden as this keeps being an issue. The holiday decorations at Manor Park continue to bring charm to the park. We will work with RMIA to establish when these decorations are to come down.

Horner Park: The retaining wall will be worked on in the spring. The physical instructor position has been temporarily filled with a part time employee. Please let Teddy Kuhlman feel welcome. The wood shop classes have been entirely filled this year. This was due to the closing of the Welles Park wood working facilities. The equipment from Welles Park will be moved to River Park. The staff feels that most of these new participants will continue to stay on here at Horner Park. Our Shop instructor Jim Roberts will evaluate if more class time will be needed to accommodate these additional participants.

Buffalo Park: Anne Rozmin forwarded the CPD quote on the council ring project to Mike Emerson for a further evaluation of the true costs. As was noted previously the costs that came in from the CPD were not accurate and also unacceptably high.

Jacob Park: Jerry Giese reported that he has been informed through his contacts that indeed Barry Fidlow has been working the neighborhood civic groups to further his goals for the park.

Sunken Gardens: Jerry Giese reported that the Ravenswood Gardens Homeowners Association is working with local resident Julie Adams, who has an landscape architecture background, to design a plan for the park.

Horner Park Riverbank Initiative: Cynthia Fox, FOCR reported that her contact in the US Army Corp. of Engineers(USACE) confirmed that our HPRI project is one of the top three that they are looking at in 2003.

Adjournment: Jerry Giese thanked all those in attendance and the meeting was adjourned at 9:30 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Larry Brown

Roster of those in attendance: Jerry Giese, President; Alan Mueller; Anne Rozmin, Vice President; Susie Novak; Larry Brown, Secretary; Larry Hodak; Elaine Taylor, Treasurer; John O’Connell; Dale Marie Grandys, North Region Supervisor, CPD; Jacob E. Peters; Terry Sweeney, Park Supervisor, CPD; Laurene von Klan, FOCR; David C. Schneider, Director, McFetridge Sports Center, CPD; Cynthia Fox, FOCR; Steve Demitro, California/McFetridge Advisory Council; Mark May, Rezmar Corp.

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