Once the flourishing riverfront center of Carpentersville, Illinois, the Old Town Area has become something of an afterthought in modern times. Shifting development patterns have brought residents farther east, taking the focus off this former booming district. In 2007, the Village of Carpentersville adopted a comprehensive plan that calls for the sustainable reformation of the Old Town area into “a local destination as “the place” for dining-out, shopping, listening to live music, or taking a stroll along the Fox River.”
In September of 2011, the Village of Carpentersville began the process of creating a plan for the Old Town Area to realize the vision set forth in its comprehensive plan. “By focusing on Old Town, one of the five key subareas of Carpentersville identified in the Comprehensive Plan, the Village hopes that this specific Old Town Plan will become a catalyst to spur and guide new development in the Old Town area.”
The Old Town Area Plan was created with assistance by the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), Chicago’s regional planning agency, through their Local Technical Assistance Program, “which involves providing assistance to communities across the Chicago metropolitan region to undertake planning projects that advance the principles of GO TO 2040,” Chicago’s regional plan. This partnership between the Village of Carpentersville and CMAP was mutually beneficial; the Village was able to create a plan that ensures that the Old Town area will grow and thrive well into the future, while CMAP was able to promote many of the principles that are within their GO TO 2040 plan, such as achieving greater livability through land use and housing.
The entire planning process took about 10 months, involving numerous phases of community outreach such as stakeholder meetings and public charettes. This process allowed the Village to solicit input from community residents, local business leaders, elected officials, and urban planners. Ultimately ,a plan was developed that will serve “as a guide for elected and appointed officials, Village staff, residents, business owners, and potential investors, allowing them to make informed administrative and implementation decisions that affect land use, community development, transportation, infrastructure, and capital improvements within Old Town.”
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Credits: Photograph by Sean Glowacz. Data linked to sources.