DuPage News Briefs

Chronicle Media Staff

The public is invited to an open house on Thursday to seek the perspective of area residents and businesses on the upcoming Washington St. bridge replacement project. The session is scheduled from 4 to 7 p.m. in Meeting Room A of the Naperville Municipal Center, 400 S. Eagle St.



City hosts open house for Washington bridge 


Naperville’s Transportation, Engineering and Development Business Group along with study consultant Alfred Benesch & Co will host a public open house on Thursday to seek the perspective of area residents and businesses on the upcoming Washington St. bridge replacement project.

The meeting is open to the public and scheduled from 4 to 7 p.m. in Meeting Room A of the Naperville Municipal Center, 400 S. Eagle St.

The City has contracted with Alfred Benesch & Company for preliminary design work on the project, which will see the construction of a new bridge over the DuPage River where it crosses under Washington Street between Chicago Avenue and Aurora Avenu.

The project will include an analysis of existing roadway conditions, safety and capacity issues, and future transportation needs and aesthetic opportunities to enhance and promote downtown Naperville.

Topics to be highlighted include the study schedule, planning process, and preliminary engineering concepts. City staff and members of Alfred Benesch & Company will be on-hand throughout to answer questions.

For more information on the project, visit www.naperville.il.us/dtwashingtonbridge.





District hosts bird  count at Waterfall Glen 



Be a part of the global “Great Backyard Bird Count” at a special Forest Preserve District of DuPage County bird walk on Feb. 19 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. at Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve in Darien.

Join a Forest Preserve District ranger to look for different species and then record sightings with the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society at birdcount.org. Last year, more than 160,000 participants submitted observations during the four-day event, creating the largest snapshot of global bird populations ever recorded.

The program is for all ages, but those under 18 should be accompanied by an adult. Register online or at (630) 933-7248. Participants should meet at the waterfall parking lot on Bluff Road. Bring water, dress for the weather, and wear sturdy shoes for this moderately paced walk, which may go along uneven turf trails.




Changes made to public parking downtown


In an effort to increase available parking for customers, employers and employees, the City made the several changes to downtown public parking areas.

Replaced 3-hour and 4-hour parking in the Wheaton Place Garage (located on Wheaton Avenue between Wesley Street and Front Street) with customer-only parking. It has also changed 94 parking spaces to 6-hour free parking in several downtown locations, including: long the west and north sides of Adams Park (Main Street and Seminary Avenue), along Wesley Street just west of City Hall and just south of the Wheaton Public Library (along Wesley, Cross and Scott streets).

The city also added 20 $1 daily fee spaces available on the top floor of the Wheaton Place Garage

A committee consisting of City staff, members of the Downtown Wheaton Association, and the Wheaton Police Department Parking Enforcement Division initiated these changes. They will free up parking spaces in the lower level of the Wheaton Place Garage for customer use, provide longer-term free parking in convenient areas for employees, and encourage employee use of leased spaces in the garage.

New signage in the downtown that will help increase awareness of the diverse parking options.






Sustainable design challenge in schools 



DuPage County and SCARCE Hosting 11th Annual Sustainable Design Challenge for Local High Schools

DuPage County and SCARCE will celebrate the 11th anniversary of the Sustainable Design Challenge, promoting environmental and stormwater education within Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) curriculum in local high schools.

The annual event, slated for Tuesday, April 4, encourages participating schools and students to design buildings and landscapes using sustainable design techniques, including green infrastructure to capture and treat stormwater runoff. Last year’s event drew the largest number of participants to date, and this year’s attendance is anticipated to surpass that record.

SCARCE Founder and Executive Director Kay McKeen credits the success of the competition to local teachers who recognize the importance of bringing real life situations into the classroom.

“It’s difficult for teachers to deviate from their set curriculum, but these DuPage teachers are proving that not only is it possible, but it is also an amazing learning opportunity for students,” said McKeen. “I think the experience for the students really does carry over into real life situations they will find themselves in during college and beyond.”

All high schools are encouraged to participate and join groups who are frequent competitors including students from: Wheaton Warrenville South, Wheaton North, Naperville North, Glenbard South (Glen Ellyn), Glenbard East (Lombard), Addison Trail, College Preparatory School of America (Lombard), Neuqua Valley (Naperville), York High School (Elmhurst), Willowbrook (Villa Park), Downers Grove North, Downers Grove South, Hinsdale Central and Westfield Middle School (Bloomingdale).

For information on participating in this year’s challenge, as well as to view a video from last year, visit https://www.scarce.org/event/sustainable-design-challenge2017/.





Andy!’s Art returns to Gallery 200 


Andy!’s art has returning to Gallery 200, an artist co-op located at 103 W. Washington Street in the heart of downtown West Chicago, during the month of February. Andy! Kozlowski is an active member of Gallery 200, where he has taught classes and been a featured artist in the past. All Sorts of Art, his most recent exhibit, was scheduled to debut last week.

Andy! has created an array of art over the years and this particular collection offers visitors a taste of his eclectic portfolio including sculpted wall pieces, metal artwork, wearable jewelry and more for viewing and sale.

Gallery 200 also offers art classes, workshops, and unique events like ArtShare that unite the community of West Chicago together and display the City’s ongoing commitment to fine arts. Regular winter hours are on Thursdays, noon to 6 p.m.; Fridays, noon to 8 p.m.; Saturdays and Sundays, noon – 4 p.m. For more information, visit Gallery 200’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/Gallery200.







Extension Service  explores positive aging 


The University of Illinois Extension Service will host “I’m Positive, I’m Aging” to be held at the Kane County Extension office, 1100 E. Warrenville Road, Naperville, at 10 a.m. on Feb. 10.

Living a healthy lifestyle, and maintaining a positive attitude and friendships are a few ways to age well.

The free program program will help participants explore the characteristics of positive aging and learn how to make the most of our later years. Led by an Extension Educator, the program also looks at ageism and how it affects all ages, as well as, the many similarities older generations have with younger ones.

Call (630) 955-1123 for more information. Space may be limited.





Tom Boatright salute at annual Heritage Dinner 


Aurora’s African-American Heritage Advisory Board will honor longtime local track coach Tom Boatright as its outstanding African-American of the Year at a Feb. 24 banquet.

Boatright is founder and director of the Aurora Flyers Track Club and has spent more than three decades helping area students achieve their dreams, including grandson and NCAA basketball championship Ryan Boatright and 2016 Olympic gold medalist Morolake Akinosun.

A graduate of East Aurora High School, Tom Boatright played on the East Aurora High School varsity football, basketball and track teams. He helped lead his basketball team to the State Finals in 1969 and in 1970. In those same years, he also went to the state finals in track for Long Jump, 100, 200 yard dash and the 800 relay. As a senior he was named Aurora’s “Athlete of The Year”.

In 1988, he established Aurora Flyers Track Club with 10 athletes. Today the Flyers are a nationally ranked track and field club with over 100 athletes currently on the roster. With their theme “It’s Fly Time,” the students who participate in the Flyers have competed at Jr. National Olympics with many earning national titles in their respective events.

AAHAB will also award high school students with the Henry Cowherd Scholarship named in honor of longtime community leader and 2008 Outstanding African-American of the Year,  Henry Cowherd.

Tickets are $50 each, with a portion going to the Henry Cowherd Scholarship Fund. Tickets can be purchased online here at www.aurora-il.org/heritagedinner, by calling 630-256-3402, or contacting Ken Maurice with any questions at KMaurice@aurora-il.org.

The banquet at Gaslite Manor, 2485 Church Road in aurora, begins with a 6 p.m. social hour and 7  p.m. dinner. For more information call (630) 256-3402, email KMaurice@aurora-il.org.