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Local News

Crystal Lake seeks public input for transportation plan

CRYSTAL LAKE – Crystal Lake residents will have a chance to help shape the future of the city’s transportation infrastructure and offerings during an open house Wednesday at City Hall.

Crystal Lake officials and representatives from the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning will gather public feedback for ways to improve roads, sidewalks, bike trails and public transportation as part of the city’s 2030 Comprehensive Plan and CMAP’s Local Technical Assistance program.

CMAP has already started 137 projects with local governments to address issues including transportation, land use, and housing as part of the regional body’s GO TO 2040 plan focused on improving livability in communities throughout a seven-county region.

“We want to understand what the main transportation problems are and where they are,” said Ricardo Lopez, a spokesman for CMAP. “We will have different posters showing different quadrants of the city where we want participants to identify what areas of the city they encounter the most issues.”

The meeting, which will take place from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday at City Hall, 100 W. Woodstock St., could help city officials identify where to extend sidewalks, where to connect bike trails or where to focus efforts to reduce speeding, said city planner Elizabeth Maxwell.

Maxwell said any transportation concern or improvement is on the table and officials want to hear as much as they can from as many people as possible.

“We really want a lot of the public to come because we want to hear from them,” Maxwell said. “We don’t want to do a project people don’t want, but if they don’t come and let us know it will be hard.”

Lopez said for those who cannot make it, a MetroQuest online tool will launch later this month or in early August that people can use to plug in information at different areas of a Crystal Lake map to submit improvement suggestions.

A public visioning workshop will be held in September to see preliminary plans, with a goal of starting to implement the plan in the spring of 2015. Maxwell said funding for specific projects would have to be built into standard budgets unless grant funding becomes available.

More information about the workshop and plan can be found at www.cmap.illinois.gov/programs-and-resources/lta/crystal-lake.

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