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Cicero moves forward with Comprehensive Plan

Published: Wednesday, July 30, 2014 1:32 p.m. CDT
(Joe Sinopoli - jsinopoli@shawmedia.com)
The preliminary work on Cicero's new Comprehensive Plan has begun and officials expect to have it completed before the first of the year. The plan serves as a policy guide for town officials when planning projects related to issues such as land use, transportation, community character and image, and commercial districts.

CICERO – Cicero's last Comprehensive Plan was put together in 1974. Development of a new comprehensive plan for the town is now underway, largely in thanks to an approximately $100,000 grant from the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning's Local Technical Assistance Grant Program.

The comprehensive plan serves as a policy guide for the Town's elected officials, the Building, Public Works, and Water departments as well as other boards and committees.

Nick Kalogeresis, vice president of the planning and design consulting firm, The Lakota Group made a presentation to the Town Council July 22, detailing the project and the issues, the planning process, and the importance of community engagement in the Comprehensive Plan.

Among the issues to be addressed are land use, transportation, infrastructure and storm water management.

The plan will also address needs in commercial districts, neighborhoods and housing, industrial areas, community facilities, parks and open space.

Kalogeresis said Phase 1 of the project, which addresses the state of the town, began in June with a meeting with the Steering Committee for the plan. Data is now being collected and maps reviewed during this early stage of the project.

Phase 2 begins in December and includes a strong push to get the community engaged in the plan process.

"It's very important because we want to hear from the community, what they would like to see Cicero become," Kalogeresis said. "They have to live in Cicero, they should have a say. It's the community that will implement the plan."

The third and last phase of the plan begins in March 2015 and ends in May.This is the implementation phase of the plan and Kalogeresis said the focus will be on action strategies, recommendations and developing road maps for various projects.

"In some cases, depending on the initiative, we can provide cost estimates, potential fund sources," he said.

The Lakota Group will serve as project manager over four other consulting firms, including the Goodman-William Group, TY Lin International, Duncan Associates and Christopher B. Burke Engineering.

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