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Addison, surrounding communities plan for housing

Published: Monday, March 10, 2014 10:48 a.m. CDT

ADDISON – The village of Addison has asked residents to participate in an interactive online survey about housing strategies as part of the Homes for a Changing Region study.

“I think every municipality is concerned about the recent recession,” said Drew Williams-Clark, principal planner for the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP).

The agency, in partnership with the Metropolitan Planning Council and the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus, is conducting a Homes for a Changing Region study covering East DuPage County, including Addison, Bensenville, Wood Dale and Villa Park at no cost to municipalities.

Funded largely through CMAP itself, the study aims to determine future housing needs so communities can develop and redevelop with a vision for their municipality in mind.

“We have the space to think really critically about the future,” Williams-Clark said.

He explained that prior to the recession many municipalities were reacting to developers’ plans, but now communities have the opportunity to plan for future development while the housing market returns from the economic recession.

Homes for a Changing Region is part of a larger comprehensive plan developed by the planning agency that looks at land use, housing, water and energy conservation, open space and other community elements through 2040. The Go To 2040 plan involves seven counties and 284 communities.

“People are interested in what they can do to leverage upcoming transportation investments,” said Williams-Clark, regarding the Elgin O’Hare Western Access project’s impact specifically in eastern DuPage County.

At this point, CMAP is looking for resident input to develop individual housing strategies for each of the four municipalities, as well as a larger regional plan.

The interactive survey allows residents to place elements like retail centers, townhomes and residential subdivisions where they would like to see them in town. There also is a visual preference section that displays various types of buildings and asks residents if they’d like to see them in their neighborhood, somewhere else in town or not at all.

“What we find is a lot of times when residents are placing things on those maps they are things that have been brought up at previous meetings,” said Kendra Smith, senior planner for the east DuPage study.

At the very end of the survey, residents are asked for their contact information so that the agency can keep them updated as a plan is developed.

“It involves a lot of back and forth,” Williams-Clark said.

Smith said CMAP has not yet determined any housing strategy, but plans to use community input. She hopes to have a draft prepared by late spring or early summer to start presenting to each municipality.

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