Progress 2015 - Daily Herald Media Group

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Daily Herald Media Group• SUNDAY, AUGUST 30, 2015

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State of the Suburbs

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

Progress 2015: Index

Jim Baumann •

Live, work and play We’ve seen a great deal of progress in the suburbs since the depths of the Great Recession in how we work, play, shop and get around. We hope you enjoy this special report on the state of the suburbs.

Housing ...................... Page 3

Health care ................ Page 31

Business ......................Page 8

Transportation............ Page 35

Manufacturing ........... Page 15

Auto sales .................. Page 40

Entertainment ............ Page 19

Schools ....................... Page 42

Government ............... Page 25

Malls ........................... Page 42

Milestones ................. Page 27

Recreation .................. Page 52



State of Housing by Susan Sarkauskas •

Hammers pounding again in suburbs


Progress 2015: housing

B r i a n H i l l / bhill@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Dwayne Miller, who works for Woodmark, cuts rafters as construction of town homes in Bowes Creek Country Club continues in Elgin.

New housing on the rise lives,” Airhart said. “I do think there are pockets” of growth, said Patrick Coveny, president of the Home Builders Association of Greater Chicago. “It’s not a huge, dramatic uptick,” said Craig Vermuelen, a senior project manager for Toll Bros., and it is still behind other areas of the country — such as New York City, Los Angeles and Detroit — in recovery. But his company is seeing more settlements and closings than last year, he said. He attributes the interest in part to stabilization in home values, with people gaining equity that can be used to purchase a new home. Coveny, founder and owner of Hinsdale-based Arch Construction Management, said he sees growth especially in the higher end of the market. Hinsdale and Clarendon Hills

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Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

Dirt is moving and nail guns are popping again at housing-construction sites throughout the suburbs. The numbers still don’t approach what they were during the boom years before 2007. But they are creeping upward. According to a June report from the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, single-unit construction starts in the Midwest were up 6.7 percent in May compared to May 2014. A HUD first-quarter 2015 report shows steady increases since 2010 in permits issued, buildings started, construction occurring and units completed, for all types of housing in the Midwest. “I see things looking better each year,” said Court Airhart, president of Airhart Construction and treasurer of the Northern Illinois Home Builders Association. People have seen home values stabilize and are “peeking out,” he said, to buy housing again. There’s an attitude among buyers of “let’s get on with our


Progress 2015: Housing


B r i a n H i l l / bhill@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Construction of new housing has resumed in the suburbs. Toll Bros. is building out a unit in the Tanglewood subdivision in Batavia, off Deerpath Road and Main Street.

New housing Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015


“are on fire,” he said. Starter homes? Not so much. “They (developers and builders) are staying away from entry-level homes,” Coveny said. Between the cost of land and permit fees, versus what they can charge, the amount of profit isn’t worthwhile, he said. Tougher standards for borrowers also factor in, Coveny added. “It is a market that is tough here,” he said. Airhart said he is seeing some changes in what people want, including single-family houses on small lots, instead of the traditional quarter-acre. Teardowns also will pick up in mature areas such

as DuPage County, he said. And Vermeulen’s company is finding that the Millennial Generation — those of us born after 1983 — are seeking homes around the $300,000 price mark, whether it be houses or townhouses. Airhart said before 2006, about 19,000 to 21,000 new housing units were added a year in the Chicago area. The market around 2006 was “supercharged,” he said, with about 30,000 units being built. But by 2010, that had dropped to 3,500 or so units. “It was almost like a spigot was turned off,” he said. This year, the market is on pace for about 8,500 units, he said. Even though loan interest rates have risen a little, “It still is a really good time to


Projects In some towns, unfinished developments have been adopted by new builders. ▶ K. Hovanian is finishing the Mirador subdivision in North Aurora; Toll Brothers is finishing Tanglewood Hills in Batavia. ▶ Toll Brothers also has developments going in Elgin, South Barrington and Glenview. ▶ Other developers managed to hang on in the recession, such as Geneva-based Shodeen Inc. Shodeen is plugging away at filling lots in its 20-year-old Mill Creek subdivision west of

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New housing Continued

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progress 2015: Housing

Geneva, even as it prepares to start work a few miles away on another massive plan, Elburn Station. The Elburn Station mixed-use development eventually should include 2,215 houses, townhouses, condominiums and apartments, expected to double the population of the village. ▶ In March, Schaumburg approved construction of an apartment complex for the first time in 30 years. UrbanStreet Group LLC plans to build 180 units near the Motorola Solutions campus. ▶ In June, Marquette Cos. of Naperville reached a deal with Lisle officials to build 201 apartments, plus stores and offices, in two five-story buildings on the site of the former village hall. ▶ Marquette also has talked to Geneva officials about building 200 apartments, plus stores, on the

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New housing in the suburbs

The Edgelawn model at the Mirador subdivision in North Aurora.

progress 2015: Housing

Jeff Knox/ jknox @dailyherald.c om

G i l b e r t r . b o u c h e r i i / gb o u cher @d a ilyher a ld . co m

Construction workers work on a home at Greggs Landing in Vernon Hills. See Page 7 for more.

Shodeen Homes in Mill Creek in Geneva.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

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New housing Continued

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progress 2015: Housing

Some of the projects proposed or under way include: ▶ O’Hare Lakes offices, residences and hotels, near the Rivers Casino in Des Plaines; ▶ Sixty luxury homes in the Stonebridge subdivision in Hawthorn Woods; B o B C h w e d y k / bc h w e dy k @ dai l y h e r al d. c om ▶ The 61-home Gregg’s LandToll Brothers’ new construction at the ing Riviera Estates near Lake Woods of South Barrington. Charles; ▶ Luxury rental housing in the Oaks of Vernon Hills; ▶ Port Clinton Place, 132 condominiums and 47 townhouses, in Vernon Hills; ▶ Park Place townhouse development, Lincoln Square houses, both in Geneva; ▶ Apartments in downtown Wheaton; ▶ The Serosun Farms concept in western Kane County, where housing will be built around a working farm; and ▶ A proposal to build 120 apartments on the site of the former DuPage Theatre in Lombard.

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State of Business by

Progress 2015: Business

Kim Mikus •

Business booming in suburbs

Courtesy of Winergy

Nestled in Elgin’s manufacturing area is Winergy Drive Systems Corp., a global player in the clean energy movement and the first company to supply gearboxes to wind turbine producers.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

Companies growing, expanding After weathering several years of stagnation, suburban economic development leaders and business experts like what they see when it comes to business expansion. “Investors are coming back to the suburbs in a way that we haven’t seen in years,” said Karla Harmon, senior vice president at Jones Lang LaSalle. “I’m very optimistic. Things are good,” said Harmon, who focuses on leasing in the Oak Brook and Naperville areas. She believes the economic environment is improving, tenants are expanding and new business is coming in. Josh Grodzin is the director of development and

marketing for Elk Grove Village. “There is a lot going on in the area of manufacturing and logistics,” he said. “That’s the bread and butter of Elk Grove Village.” Ceva Logistics, Panattoni Development and Forsythe Data Centers are all in the expansion mode, he said, adding that a number of older buildings were torn down last year and developers are building new. The local economy started climbing again in 2013, he See Page 9

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Going forward, companies’ ability to attract and retain talented employees is going to be the most important economic development issue for communities, experts say. The economy has rebounded, employment numbers are good and companies are growing their workforce again, Jeffries said.

Business Continued

B o B C h w e d y k / bc h w e dy k @ dai l y h e r al d. c om

CEO Gary Stern of Stern Pinball expanded operations in Elk Grove Village.

This includes new or expanded businesses adding at least 50 new jobs and $1 million in investment,” Gay said. “We’ve seen continued growth here mainly in manufacturing, retail, health care and education,” he said. Christine D. Jeffries, president of Naperville Development Partnership, also is optimistic. “New retail developments are going up throughout the city. Two new hotels are under construction; the Embassy Suites opening ... with a new convention center and Indigo on the Riverwalk in downtown Naperville,” she said. Along with hospitality, other strong industries are retail — including auto sales and office, she said.

Stern Pinball Inc. moved and expanded into Elk Grove Village in the spring, making the suburb a global hub for the next generation of iconic pinball games. Believed to be the oldest and largest pinball company in the world, Stern expanded to a 40,000-square-foot building that consolidated its Melrose Park headquarters and a warehouse near O’Hare International Airport. With about 250 employees, President Gary Stern said the company plans to hire workers, roll out new technology and pursue new markets, including China and India. “Stern has been the king of production,” said Mark Steinman, director of operations for the Professional and Amateur Pinball Association. “Stern has been No. 1 in putting out new games.”

SKF Group A Swedish-based manufacturer, SKF Group, is building a 130,000-square-foot

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Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

said. “The vacancy rate in the industrial segment went from 12.5 in 2010 to 6 percent now.” Michael H. Stevens, president & CEO of Lake County Partners, is seeing the same positive signs. Two sectors in particular that have been growing in Lake County are biopharma and precision manufacturing, he said. In biopharma, companies like Horizon Pharma in Deerfield and Fresenius Kabi in Lake Zurich are both growing significantly in sales and head count. Both have made a number of acquisitions over the last few years. “Abbott and AbbVie have grown since splitting in 2013, and we are excited about the same opportunity for Baxter and Baxalta,” Stevens said. Companies in the precision manufacturing sector that have seen growth include LMT Onsrud in Waukegan, Dynacoil in Zion, and Zeller Plastik in Libertyville, he added. DuPage County is seeing similar growth, according to Bryan Gay, economic development director for Choose DuPage. “We’re at about 20 percent growth in new projects here.

Stern Pinball

Progress 2015: Business

BoB Chwedyk/BChwedyk@dailyherald.Com

Yusen Logistics in Elk Grove Village is one of the many companies expanding and growing.

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Progress 2015: Business


research and development center on 13 acres at 1203 E. Warrenville Road in Naperville. Employees will conduct research in materials testing, manufacturing processes and tribology, which is the study of design, friction, lubrication and wear of surfaces that interact in motion, such as bearings and gears, said SKF spokesS c o t t S a n d e r S / ssa n d er s@d a ilyher a ld . co m man Walt Delevich. SKF Group is building a 130,000-square-foot research and development center on 13 acres at 1203 E. Warrenville Road in Naperville. Employees also will conduct specialized computer modeling and simulation before fabricating prototypes, Naperville. testing them and modifying them to fit customer energy globally. That’s the sum of all the energy needs, Delevich said. The facility will support captured by Winergy’s gearboxes since the comWinergy Drive Systems local sales engineers who work with customers in pany’s founding in 1981. Winergy also has sites in industries including oil and gas, aerospace and China, Europe and India. automotive. The facility supplies gearboxes to more than a Nestled in Elgin’s manufacturing area is Winergy The research and development center will be the Drive Systems Corp., a global player in the clean third of all wind turbines in the world. third suburban site for SKF Group. Wind turbine technology kicked off in 1980, with energy movement and the first company to supply A groundbreaking is expected in October. early versions of it first seen on the West Coast. In gearboxes to wind turbine producers. SKF has about 15,000 distributor locations 1981, Flender, a 100-year-old German industrial The Elgin location is growing and has reached worldwide. The company has more than 48,000 a milestone in the industry by being the first comSee Page 12 employees. About 80 are expected to work in pany in its category to surpass 100 gigawatts of

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Progress 2015: Business

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Business Continued

company, launched Winergy Drive Systems. Twenty years later, Flender incorporated Winergy’s U.S. division in Elgin. Siemens acquired Flender and the Winergy business about 10 years ago. About 200 employees work at the Elgin site.

Progress 2015: Business

Zurich expands Zurich American Insurance’s 2,500 employees and contractors in Schaumburg, now at 1400 and 1450 American Lane, will move to the existing Motorola Solutions campus in Schaumburg. Zurich has been in Schaumburg since 1980. Zurich is building its 750,000-square-foot North American headquarters not far from the iconic office towers Zurich plans to vacate in 2016. Construction began during the third quarter of 2014 and will create as many as 700 construction jobs. Schaumburg officials believe the appeal of the new location includes proximity to the Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel and Convention Center and better improved access to the Jane Addams Tollway at Roselle and Meacham roads.

CDW, based in Vernon Hills, is leasing more space in Lincolnshire.

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Medline, CDW thrive


Panagiotakakos said. In exchange for a $17.5 million tax-incentive deal with the state, Medline agreed last year to expand in Lake County and to keep its headquarters in Illinois, to expand in Mundelein and to open another office in a new location in Lake County. That’s the Lincolnshire site. Medline is Mundelein’s largest employer and one of the biggest in the suburbs. The firm has about 12,000 workers worldwide, including about 1,600 in Mundelein.

Wintrust steady growth ▶ Wintrust Financial Corp. based in Rosemont continues to report growth in net income. The company, which saw second-quarter increases of nearly 15 percent, also is in a growth mode. “Wintrust is continuing on its stated approach of consistent and steady growth in all pertinent financial metrics and the franchise itself,” President and CEO Edward J. Wehmer said. “In the third quarter, we expect to add nearly a billion dollars of assets to the balance sheet through the closing of our previously announced acquisitions. These acquisitions will result in material cost savings opportunities, which will allow us to leverage our existing infrastructure,” he said. Recent acquisitions include Chicago-based North Bank and Delavan Bancshares Inc., a Wisconsin state chartered bank, which operates four banks in

southeastern Wisconsin.

Middleby on fast track ▶ Elgin-based Middleby Corp. is heating up. The publicly traded company, which started as a manufacturer of ovens, continues to make huge acquisitions. Middleby acquired Viking Range a while back and says it is on a fast track to increase the company’s market share and profit margins. It agreed to buy Aga Rangemaster Group for $202 million earlier this summer and also recently acquired Concordia Coffee Company, a manufacturer of automated and self-service coffee and espresso machines used in the commercial food service industry.

Downtown Libertyville a draw ▶ Downtown Libertyville is seeing a “problem” that most towns would love to have. A proliferation of restaurants with more on the way has put a squeeze on parking that at times frustrates patrons. About 600 more restaurant seats recently opened or are in the works. Mickey Finn’s recently expanded, and Salerno’s Ristorante & Pizzeria announced a move to 602 N. Milwaukee Ave. in the former home of Trattoria Pomigliano, which is preparing a new location a few blocks away on Cook Avenue.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

RendeRing couRtesy of the village of schaumbuRg

Zurich American Insurance is building its new headquarters on the Motorola Solutions campus. The planned 750,000-square-foot headquarters will sit at the northwest corner of Meacham Road and the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway.

Progress 2015: Business

Two prominent Lake County companies plan to move some of their sizable staffs this year. CDW, the computer retail giant based in Vernon Hills, and Medline Industries, a medical supply company headquartered in Mundelein, are eyeing office space in Lincolnshire. CDW is leasing two five-story towers in the Tri-State International Office Center, which is west of the Tri-State Tollway and south of Route 22. The company will keep its headquarters in Vernon Hills, including its financial management and warehouse, village officials said. The company, which employs 7,200, also leases office space across the street from its headquarters. Last year, the company reported $12 billion in net sales. About 1,000 workers could move to Lincolnshire by year’s end. Medline purchased the former Aon Hewitt campus west of the Tri-State and north of Route 22 in January. The 38-acre site has 269,000 square feet of office space in three buildings. Aon Hewitt still operates a data center there and will continue to do so, officials said. “We are excited about expanding our corporate footprint and bringing more good jobs to the area,” Medline spokeswoman Vivika


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Each day at every hour, Elk Grove-based manufacturers transform raw materials into critical parts for products and designs that make, shape and create the world we live in.


Progress 2015: Business


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State of Manufacturing

By Anna Marie Kukec •


A manufacturing renaissance? Progress 2015: Manufacturing


IDI Gazeley expects to have tenants soon at the new facility in Antioch. This is a drawing of what the facility will look like when it is completed.

New companies open, old ones expand president and chief operating officer for the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association. “We’re hopeful that more companies will come here, since we are centrally located and offer great transportation and infrastructure, but a lot depends on what happens with our state government in Springfield,” he said. “Companies want stability and predictability, and we don’t have that right now.” Still, many suburban leaders report interest in manufacturers wanting to settle in their towns. Elk Grove Village, which is home to one of the largest industrial parks in the nation, holds an annual trade show for local companies that allows them to network and link up with suppliers and

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The suburbs could be experiencing a renaissance for manufacturing, as new companies come in and existing ones expand. An improved economy, more trade and educational programs for high school students, and jobs remaining here instead of being sent overseas have all helped to boost manufacturing around the suburbs, experts said. But don’t get your hopes up too high. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows Illinois had 572,100 manufacturing jobs in May, compared to 580,000 in May 2014, a loss of 7,900 jobs. Manufacturers of transportation equipment have been doing well, compared to those making durable goods and fabricated metals. Manufacturing jobs statewide are down and companies want a more stable state government, said Mark Denzler, vice

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Progress 2015: Manufacturing


services close to home, said Gary Skoog, president of the Golden Corridor Advanced Manufacturing Partnership, which includes Hoffman Estates, Schaumburg and Elk Grove Village. “We are seeing suppliers and manufacturers making more connections here to keep all the business here,” Skoog said. The Golden Corridor is also helping the towns boost their workforces by making more local educational connections and encouraging high school programs and training in needed skills, Skoog said. “We have more training over the last five years because we’re working with the high schools,” Skoog said. “There are more students now going into these jobs. The word is getting out there.” In Schaumburg, Takisawa, which makes specialized machine tools, IAI America Inc., which focuses on motion control systems, and Shigiya, which makes machine tool parts and grinders, are all building new facilities and bringing in new employees. Others like HiGrade Welding & Manufacturing, AA Truck Repair, Redlock Productions and TouchTunes Music Corp. are expanding their

B o B C h w e d y k / b chwed yk@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Takisawa Machine Tools is expanding in Schaumburg.

workforces, said Matt Frank, assistant director of community development for Schaumburg. “This has all been encouraging,” Frank said. “Many of these companies are re-shoring and bringing back manufacturing to the United States.”

Elk Grove Industrial Park Investing millions of dollars in infrastructure, being more aggressive with tax incentive packages and running a yearlong marketing campaign have all helped Elk Grove Village keep

its industrial park modern and growing. About $55 million has been invested over the last 10 years to improve roads, landscaping, signs and intersections around

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Josh Grodzin, director of business development and marketing of Elk Grove Village, walks near the industrial park in this 2010 photo.


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build a showroom in the industrial park over the next year, he said. “If a company wants to expand now, they know they can call me and we can help, before they look to move out,” he said.

Sunstar Americas Sunstar is leaving Chicago and moving to the suburbs. The 82-year-old manufacturer of oral health care products outgrew its aging facility near the Edens Expressway in Chicago and could not find an appropriate site for growth in the city. So it selected Schaumburg for its North American headquarters because of the town’s access to transportation and a large pool of potential employees. “Sunstar is thrilled to be making a major investment in the Chicago metropolitan area and is looking forward to expanding our world class manufacturing capabilities at our new facility in Schaumburg,” said Rick McMahon, managing director and chief financial offer for Sunstar Americas See Page 18

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Progress 2015: Manufacturing

the 62 million square feet of industrial property. Another $38 million was earmarked last year for improvements to sewage systems, said Josh Grodzin, director of business development and marketing for Elk Grove Village. The village also has invested in a $500,000 marketing and branding campaign with billboards and broadcast ads. Those combined efforts, along with a more aggressive approach to providing tax incentives, could be why the village has seen a reduction in vacancies. Business vacancies have dropped from 12.5 percent in 2010 to 5.9 percent this year, Grodzin said. “Cook County taxes are very high, so these property tax exemptions for a new company coming in or an existing company who wants to expand to a new building have helped us to remain competitive,” he said. Companies such as Abbott Rubber Co. Inc. and Savage Bros. Co. both stayed in the village by moving into larger, vacant buildings and taking advantage of the tax incentives, he said. In addition, Atlas Forklift plans to

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Progress 2015: Manufacturing


Inc. The company, which also has operations in Elgin, started in Japan as a manufacturer of bicycle parts and rubber glue. It now makes its international headquarters in Switzerland and has a diverse portfolio. The Chicago facility has about 225,000 square feet and the new facility in Schaumburg has more than 300,000 square feet. The Schaumburg campus offers room for expansion. Office employees are expected to move after Labor Day. Machinery and other employees will move from October through about January. Some employees from Elgin also will move to Schaumburg, but the Elgin facility will remain in operation.

in 2007 ... right in time for the recession to begin,” said Jeff Lanaghan, vice president of asset management. “In spite of our poor timing, we remain optimistic that the product we are planning is in demand for this area. The fantastic start to our initial building seems to prove out that optimism.” The park is designed to support more than 1.2 million square feet of distribution, manufacturing and research facilities. The Antioch Corporate Center started construction on Building A in mid-2014. The 454,276-square-foot docked facility is scheduled for occupancy this summer, Lanaghan said. “We are fortunate to have an international pharmaceutical company as our lead tenant taking 47 percent of the project,” Lanaghan said.

IDI Gazeley

Also around the suburbs

IDI Gazeley owns the business park along Route 173 between Route 45 and the TriState Tollway in Antioch. The company has had longtime plans for a $25 million office, warehouse and manufacturing building. The company also has spec buildings under construction in Bolingbrook and Joliet. “The Antioch property was purchased

▶ Oelheld, a German company that produces machine oils, fluids and lubricants, will move to the Oakview corporate Park in West Dundee, possibly in 2016. It is outgrowing its facility in Elgin. The company bought the 28,000-square-foot building to be used for production, storage and office space, according to the village.

Sunstar Americas Inc. is moving from Chicago into a new facility in Schaumburg.

▶ Rosemont-based Principle Construction Corp. is building a 75,363-square-foot expansion for Dynamic Manufacturing Inc., which makes automotive, off-road, industrial and racing powertrain products in Hillside. The site expansion will accommodate a larger warehouse, new water main and sewer. ▶ The Technology Center of DuPage plans to reopen high school Manufacturing Technology and Welding programs this fall. TCD opened in 1974, when more than 20 percent of all U.S. employment was in manufacturing. But as the industries waned, so did the programs. Now, manufacturers say they can’t find enough new people with the appropriate skills. So more programs have been added. ▶ In recent years, various companies have expanded. Acme industries expanded its workforce to make locomotive engine components, mining truck steering arms and other parts in Elk Grove Village. Bison Gear & Engineering Corp. in St. Charles has returned to assembling gear motors here instead of China. And Peerless Industries in Aurora, which makes audiovisual mounting solutions, returned its manufacturing to Illinois after concerns about rising labor costs and protecting its intellectual property.

B o B C h w e d y k / b chwed yk@d a ilyher a ld . co m

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State of Entertainment By Jamie Sotonoff •

Progress 2015: entertainment

Fun pays off for suburbs Entertainment, dining a draw

D a i l y H e r a l D F i l e P H o t o b y J o H n S t a r k S / jst a r ks@d a ilyher a ld . co m

The Arcada Theatre in St. Charles has doubled its attendance in the last 30 months, drawing national acts.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

Once largely a convention town, Rosemont now draws more than 1 million visitors a year with an entertainment district that buzzes with splashy new developments. Country music superstar Garth Brooks opened his first national tour in 16 years here, and one of the Kardashians made an appearance in Rosemont earlier this year. It’s among several success stories that have revitalized the suburban entertainment scene, no longer making it necessary to trek into the city for fun and culture. In 2015, many suburban entertainment venues found themselves thriving. Several malls and theaters are remodeling and expanding. Minor league baseball teams are setting attendance records. More gourmet and ethnic restaurants have opened. And on any given weekend, you can do things like indoor sky diving, stop by festivals featuring everything from fairies to craft beer, or see a well-known ’70s or ’80s band perform. There has never been a bigger or better variety of things to do in the suburbs. Rosemont, in particular, has experienced a boom with its MB Financial Park and Fashion Outlets of Chicago. The winter skating rink alone — despite a bitterly cold winter — drew 25,000 See Page 20

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Progress 2015: entertainment


people. The park has been so successful, more development is on the way. “You build it, and they will come,” said Bill Anderson, manager of Rosemont’s Convention & Tourism Bureau, who credits the vision of Mayor Bradley Stephens for the suburb’s success. “It was risky, but it worked. People are very happy. (People from) the suburbs of Chicago are now enjoying Rosemont.” There is big fun in other suburbs, too. Here are some of the suburban entertainment venues that have made great strides this year:

Rosemont There’s a lot packed into this

See Page 21 People enjoy the evening walking around Rosemont’s MB Financial Park.

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3-square-mile town — bars, restaurants, hotels, an arena, theaters, free concerts, regular fireworks shows and much more. It’s made Rosemont one of the hottest entertainment districts in the Midwest. The new indoor sky diving business, iFly, is booking a month in advance on weekends. “I thought, $79 for three minutes? Who’s going to do that? But people are coming out. They’re booked ... because it’s really fun,” Anderson said.

Arcada Theatre

See Page 22 D a i l y H e r a l D F i l e P H o t o b y M a r k W e l s H / mw e l s h @ dai l y h e ra ld . co m

The Schaumburg Boomers minor league baseball team has won two titles and is setting attendance records.

Cuomo Catering Reinvents Catering Industry Catering in the U.S. is a billion dollar industry with several companies in the Chicagoland area. As a consumer, it is hard to know which company to choose, to fit your unique circumstances and dietary needs. Cuomo Catering takes the stress and guess work out of planning your event. “We are a full-service event planning and catering company,” said David Gotowko, Partner, Cuomo Catering Companies, Inc. “We not only

provide food and beverages for your social or corporate events, but we can plan your Tom Cuomo (R) party whether David Gotowko (L) you need tents, balloons, team builder games, kids rides or even a zip line. Our professional event staff can plan & execute any event from simple family gatherings and picnics of any size, to formal weddings, small corporate meetings or large conferences, and charity galas.”

Cuomo Catering, based in Northlake, has been in business for over 35 years. In 2012, the business underwent a $1.2 million dollar renovation creating a state-of-the-art Kitchen and Operations Facility making it one of the largest catering kitchens in Chicago.

Progress 2015: entertainment

Arcada President and CEO Ron Onesti has taken a 900-seat 1920s theater in St. Charles and transformed it into a popular, go-to destination for

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Progress 2015: entertainment


RiverEdge Park in Aurora is drawing large national acts.

Entertainment Continued


music lovers. In the past 30 months, the theater has hit its stride and doubled attendance. Most shows feature bands from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s, such as Foreigner, Kansas and The Lovin’ Spoonful. But it consistently brings in national acts of all kinds, including stars like Debbie Reynolds, Buddy Guy and Jenny McCarthy.

Daily HeralD File PHoto

Onesti attributes the theater’s success to an aggressive marketing strategy aimed at a niche audience — middle-aged classic rock fans, like himself — rather than trying to be everything to everybody. “That’s the demographic that’s buying tickets,” See Page 23


Entertainment Continued

he said. “When it comes to the classics — the 1964-1979 genre — no one’s doing it more (than Arcada). People find this to be the musical home. And I value that relationship with our customers.”

Minor league baseball

Others of note Other entertainment venues making noteworthy progress this past year: ▶ RiverEdge Park: A grassy spot along the Fox River in Aurora has been transformed into a delightful, bringyour-own-chair outdoor music venue, drawing bigger acts than ever in 2015, including Hall & Oates and Trombone Shorty. ▶ Paramount Theatre: The Aurora theater is having a stellar year. It has expanded its offerings, and shows are consistently receiving kudos from critics. This is the first year they’re eligible


to win a prestigious Jeff Award, and that could happen when the winners are announced this fall. ▶ Grand Victoria Casino: The Elgin casino is planning to build a $10 million-plus “Ravinia-like” outdoor concert venue next year, after a successful summer concert-in-the-park series with performers such as George Thorogood, Heart, Peter Frampton and Huey Lewis and the News. ▶ Downtown Naperville: There is a variety of development going on in downtown Naperville, including a new park along the Riverwalk and new businesses in the Water Street District. The nearby Freedom Commons is booming, too. ▶ Long Grove: The demand for its festivals — featuring chocolate, strawberries, apples and all sorts of other good stuff — remains strong in the quaint, 19th Century downtown area.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

A historical landmark palace, The Paramount Theatre boasts of beauty and opulence offering no obstructed views, impeccable acoustics and comfortable seats.

Progress 2015: entertainment

The Schaumburg Boomers and the Kane County Cougars both have been setting attendance records, and the Boomers have won two straight Frontier League titles. So besides good baseball in pleasant venues, crowds are coming out for the fun, family-friendly environments packed with pre-, mid- and postgame entertainment. With tickets in the $10 range and free parking, it costs a fraction of what

you’d pay to see a major league game — a home run for many suburban residents.


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Thank You for 60 Beautiful Years An Extraordinary Gift

Progress 2015: entertainment

In his will, Col. Robert R. McCormick specified that his beloved Wheaton estate be maintained “as a public park and museum for the recreation, instruction and welfare of the people of the State of Illinois.” Cantigny was his gift to the community. Today, 60 years after The Colonel’s passing and the establishment of the park, the beauty and benefits of our 500 acres endure as part of the Robert R. McCormick Foundations. As much as we love history here, the future is also on our minds. In recent years we’ve made great progress, including the park’s upgraded front entrance on Winfield Road. The new gateway isn’t just for looks, it’s for the safety and convenience of our guests – 400,000 per year and growing. Additional projects with a customer focus are in the planning stages. Cantigny is a special place, a “local treasure” that we aim to preserve, improve and share. We embrace Col. McCormick’s vision for the park as a public resource, to be enjoyed by all for generations to come.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

Please visit us online at

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State of Government By Eric Peterson •

marketing and profile of the villageowned Sears Centre Arena. This year, the Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament returned to the Sears Centre, two years after it was first held there. The increasing popularity has attracted Dallas-based Main Event Entertainment to plan for a family entertainment center next to the Sears Centre next year. It will feature bowling, laser tag, video games, a ropes course, restaurants and a bar.

Downtown Barrington Long before the recession, Barrington officials were making plans to rev up what they considered to be the underutilized southwest corner of Hough and Main streets at the center of the village’s downtown. The village bought several properties at the corner with the intention of selecting a single developer for a unified project that would provide more retail, restaurants and parking for Barrington’s commercial core. Though both political gridlock on the village board and then the recession caused a longer wait than was anticipated, the project finally opened this year with both new and relocated tenants. Among the businesses signed up or already open in the development’s two buildings are Egg Harbor Cafe, Starbucks, AT&T, Japanese restaurant Shakou and 18/8 Haircuts & Styling for Men. These tenants represent about 70 percent of the available space in the new development, which has been intended to be a catalyst for further, entirely private development elsewhere in the downtown, Village Manager Jeff Lawler said. The village still owns all the underlying property itself — ensuring the longterm future of its 123 parking spaces

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Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

E r i c P E t E r s o n / e p e te r s on @ dai l y h e r al d. c om

Palatine’s village hall renovation project is expected to be complete next spring.

The Great Recession took a huge toll not only on the viability and growth of for-profit businesses, but also the local governments that depend on the sales taxes and property taxes that naturally rise when the economy is strong. With even a village like Schaumburg having to start its first property tax due to shortfalls in its once robust consumer taxes, most every local government spent a few years in survival mode rather than improving facilities. But just as pent-up demand among consumers is expressed once a financial crisis is over, so too have governments begun to make up for lost time in their own public upgrades. And some government projects, like Barrington’s Hough/Main development project downtown, are intended to jump-start economic development and inspire more private investment in their wake. While some of the ongoing government projects are renovating or replacing buildings that date back to the early or mid-20th Century, they’re all taking advantage of the current recovery to build facilities to last far through the remainder of this economically turbulent 21st. Among government’s most important contributions to the economic recovery is the widening of the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway, including long-awaited interchange improvements at Meacham, Roselle and Barrington roads. The expected beneficiaries include St. Alexius Medical Center in Hoffman Estates and Schaumburg’s Renaissance Hotel and Convention Center. Schaumburg already is planning for the potential redevelopment at the intersection of Meacham and Algonquin roads, just north of the convention center, for an entertainment district. Since the hiring of management firm Global Spectrum in 2010, Hoffman Estates reports huge strides in the

Progress 2015: government

E r i c P E t E r s o n / ep e te r s on @ dai l y h e r al d. c om

Barrington’s newly completed Hough/Main redevelopment project downtown still awaits additional tenants.

Governments regain tax base

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Government Continued

— while the development is on a 99-year lease.

Progress 2015: government

Palatine village hall After 63 years of service — originally as the former Palatine High School — Palatine’s village hall is in the midst of an overhaul intended to transform the aging structure into a proud symbol for the rest of the 21st century. The $12.7 million project began by stripping the building at 200 E. Wood St. down to bare concrete. The accoutrements removed included not only those recently used by village staff and the Palatine Park District, but even the beige lockers once used by high school students. When completed, the roof will let in more natural light. The exterior renovation will be at least as significant as the work inside. The drab concrete atop the building will be covered by aluminum panels, and the brick facade will undergo a modernizing facelift. Currently, village officials work out of a temporary location at 150 W. Wilson St., just south of the railroad

tracks, but expect to move into the renovated building in the spring of 2016.

Aurora library Summer 2015 will be remembered as the time Aurora replaced its 111-year-old, Carnegie-funded library at Benton Street and Stolp Avenue with the state-of-the-art Richard and Gina Santori Public Library on River Street. The $28 million, two-year project was greeted by 1,500 eager patrons on its opening day in June. Among the new attractions are the Maker Space — which features a vinyl cutter, laser cutter and 3-D printer — and the Kiwanis of Aurora Children’s Center’s large storytime room.

Other projects ▶ Renovation of the White House in Barrington. ▶ Plans for a new Arlington Heights police station. ▶ Completion of Arlington Heights Public Library renovation.

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Dr. Gina Santori speaks during the dedication ceremony for Aurora’s new downtown library that bears her and her late husband’s names.

▶ Renovation of the Poplar Creek Public Library. ▶ Early stages of the renovation and expansion of the Lake County criminal court building. ▶ Lakemoor is building a new combined police station and village hall. ▶ Some Lake County communities soon will start transitioning to Lake Michigan water. ▶ Libertyville may build a parking deck behind its civic center.

▶ Glen Ellyn is working on a new pedestrian underpass. ▶ The Anderson Road bridge in Elburn should be completed in spring. ▶ Elburn’s new fire station is nearing completion. ▶ The first floor of the Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin could be renovated. ▶ Renovations at the Naper Boulevard Library in Naperville recently were completed.


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Birthdays mark nearly 2 centuries of suburban growth


Milestones in History Here is a look at some of the suburban institutions that are celebrating big birthdays of at least 25 years in 2015:

Progress 2015: Milestones

The village of Itasca is 125 years old.

180 years City of Geneva

170 years

Zion United Methodist Church in Hampshire

Savage Bros. manufacturing in Elk Grove Village

150 years Daily HeralD arcHives

Downtown Barrington, roughly around the turn of the last century.

Village of Barrington

145 years

Normennenes Singing Society in Mount Prospect

140 years

Oswald’s Pharmacy in Naperville Theosophical Society in America, in Wheaton

See Page 28

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

160 years

Prospect Heights District 23 schools American Hotel Register Co. in Vernon Hills

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State of Health Care

By Jessica Cilella •

Hospital mergers and expansions

See Page 32

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P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : H e a lt H c a r e

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Health care Continued

who now have coverage comes a need for more ways to care for them. “People are more conscious of their health care needs. They’re more proactive in leading a healthier lifestyle,” Wilhelmi said. “I think that hospitals and health systems are looking for opportunities to ensure they have the capabilities to continue providing quality health care in an environment where there are significant pressures.” Partnerships and mergers have raised buying power, attracted more patients and created a larger pool of physician talent. Hospital expansions and construction of specialty centers have addressed growing needs in the community and ensured patients are getting “the right care, at the right time and at the right place,” Wilhelmi said. “The health care delivery system in the suburbs is very strong,” he said. “There is a strong commitment to improve quality and outcomes, to lower costs and really be the hubs of health care.”

Mergers Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

Mark Welsh/

Good Shepherd Hospital near Barrington is undergoing a $247 million modernization.

Many suburban hospitals and health care systems have been merging in recent years. One of the largest proposed mergers is between Oak Brook-based Advocate Health Care and NorthShore University Health System of the Northern suburbs. Should the merger go through, the two will create the largest health care system in the state and will be called Advocate NorthShore Health Partners. It is estimated that Advocate and NorthShore combined would serve roughly 3 million patients a year at 16 hospitals, including Good Shepherd

GeorGe leClaire/

Construction at Myers Place in Mount Prospect.

in Barrington and Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville. Before announcing the intent to merge with NorthShore, Advocate also merged with Elginbased Sherman Health Systems in 2013, which includes Sherman Hospital. There have been new partnerships formed among providers of end-of-life care, too, as seen in the recent merger of Horizon Hospice, JourneyCare and Midwest Palliative and Hospice Care Center. Other large mergers in the suburbs include: ▶ Alexian Brothers Health System and Adventist Midwest Health, now known as Amita; ▶ Northwestern Memorial Healthcare and Cadence Health, which operates Delnor (Geneva) and Central DuPage (Winfield) hospitals;

▶ Naperville-based Edward Hospital and Health Services and Elmhurst Memorial Healthcare; ▶ Provena Health, including Mercy Center in Aurora, & Resurrection HealthCare, including Holy Family Medical Center in Des Plaines.

Expansions As hospitals age, there have been efforts to renovate and meet new demands, such as private rooms, upgraded technology and other features to help improve efficiencies. One of the biggest modernization projects is taking place at Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital near Barrington, where work has been

See Page 33


Health care



Courtesy of Centegra HealtH system

This rendering depicts the $233 million Centegra Hospital-Huntley, which is scheduled to open next year.

Behavioral health Wilhelmi said one of the biggest issues facing the industry in Illinois is providing quality behavioral health care. In recent years, there have been efforts to add to the number of facilities and programs dedicated to behavioral health.

In Wheeling, for example, counselors will live full-time at the Philhaven apartment building when it opens next year. The complex will house 50 units for the disabled, mentally ill and formerly homeless, much like the 39-unit Myers Place,

See Page 34

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : H e a lt H C a r e

ongoing since 2013. The four-year, $247 million project includes construction of a four-story addition to provide space for the hospital’s switch to private rooms for all patients. There also will be a new main entrance, new operating rooms and technology improvements in various departments at the 36-year-old facility. Other large hospital expansion projects in the suburbs include the $378 million revitalization of Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital and the construction of the new $233 million, 128-bed Centegra Hospital-Huntley. Both are expected to open in the next two years. Other notable expansions include: ▶ Northwest Community Hospital, Arlington Heights — addition of 200 beds and a new wing, $204 million; ▶ New Alexian Brothers Women and Children’s Hospital, Hoffman Estates — opened in 2013, $125 million; ▶ Edward Hospital, Naperville — new 36-bed orthopedic and spine center, more intensive care unit beds, $63.7 million; ▶ Central DuPage Hospital, Winfield — plans to modernize the neonatal intensive care and pediatrics units, $14.2 million.

34 A

Health care

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : H e a lt H C a r e


which opened in 2013 in Mount Prospect. People facing a behavioral health crisis who don’t require hospitalization but are looking for a safe place to stabilize can turn to the DuPage County Health Department’s new community health center when it opens this fall in Wheaton. It will include a short-stay crisis unit and offices for the National Alliance on Mental Illinois DuPage. Other behavioral health developments include: ▶ Pioneer Center for Community Mental Health, which opened a new location last year in McHenry; ▶ Linden Oaks Behavioral Health Hospital in Naperville, which underwent a $4.3 million expansion; ▶ Alexian Brothers Center for Mental Health, which moved to a larger facility in Arlington Heights in 2012.

End-of-life care As Baby Boomers age, more senior living and memory care facilities are popping up in the

suburbs. Autumn Leaves is perhaps the most popular name in the area, with locations open or being built in at least 10 suburbs, including Arlington Heights, Vernon Hills and St. Charles. Most recently, Autumn Leaves opened an $11 million memory care community in South Barrington with room for nearly 50 residents with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and other memory impairments. Another new development for end-of-life care is the Alexian Brothers Hospice Residence, which opened in 2013 in Elk Grove Village. The faith-based center offers 16 rooms to dying patients who are likely to live less than six months. Some other areas memory and hospice care providers are considering: ▶ Glen Ellyn — Developers have proposed constructing a senior housing complex with memory care on Park Boulevard; ▶ Wheaton — A senior living residence with 20 memory care studios coming next October;

▶ Wheeling — Construction began this spring on The Whitley, which includes 34 memory care units; ▶ Lombard — An 80-unit senior living facility with specialized care elements is scheduled to open later this year; ▶ Elgin — New Elgin Memory Care center includes 24 apartments for residents with memory impairments; ▶ Vernon Hills — The Springs of Vernon Hills, opening this fall, will offer a dementia care program to residents.

Other specialties The health care field in the suburbs also has seen a great deal of development in specialty areas in recent years, especially for services that patients formerly had to travel to Chicago or elsewhere to receive. That includes places such as the Walter Payton Liver Center Outreach Clinic, which started providing specialized liver care this summer at Edward Hospital’s Cancer Center in Naperville. There also has been a surge in

demand for outpatient clinics. Construction began this summer on the new $20 million, three-story Elmhurst Hospital Hinsdale Health Center, which will offer immediate and primary care, behavioral health services, imaging and rehabilitation. Last year, the DuPage Medical Group opened a new building in Wheaton that includes a BreakThrough Care Center, where patients can work with health coaches, a dietitian, a pharmacist and a social worker. The building also has space dedicated to physical and occupational therapy, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology and primary care. Other specialty developments include: ▶ A new Ronald McDonald House in Winfield and the first Ronald McDonald Family Room in the state at Edward Hospital; ▶ Northwestern Medicine Chicago Proton Center in Warrenville. “This is a very complicated mosaic, but yet, at the end of the day, we are moving in a very positive direction in transforming the health care delivery system,” Wilhelmi said.

Mark Welsh/

Joan Scheffler, assistant vice president of the Alexian Brothers Foundation, shows off the new rooms at the Alexian Brothers Hospice Residence grand opening in Elk Grove Village.


State of Roads by Marni Pyke •


Road projects cement future


P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : t r a n s P o r tat i o n

Crews pour concrete during construction at I-90 and the Roselle Road interchange.

B r i a n H i l l / bhill@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Projects parallel development Along with a commercial renaissance in eastern DuPage, the ElginO’Hare is a game-changer for getting around. That’s because of a ring road on the west side of O’Hare that will connect with Route 390, the Tri-State Tollway in Franklin Park and I-90 in Des Plaines. It’s the kind of interchange and highway spaghetti suburban drivers will eat up, with the ability to escape congestion on the I-355/I-290/Route 53 juggernaut, planners think. The “magnitude of the project and potential to dramatically improve mobility, freight connectivity and enhance the regional economy” have

See Page 36

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

As the economy sputtered during the Great Recession, innovative transportation projects such as the Elgin-O’Hare Expressway extension sustained and created jobs. Now that the city and suburbs are rebounding, those projects will shape how we drive, live and work in the very near future. To the north, the Illinois tollway is regenerating the Jane Addams Tollway (I-90) as a wider, “smart” corridor with new interchanges that are spurring retail and commercial development. And just west of O’Hare, crews are pushing the Elgin-O’Hare Expressway (Route 390) east to the airport. “It’s a marvelous project with huge potential for economic development,” DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin said.


Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : T r a n s P o r TaT i o n


B r i a n H i l l / bh i l l @ dai l y h e r al d. c o m

Construction on the Elgin-O’Hare Expressway and I-290 is one of many transit projects with repercussions for economic growth.

Roads Continued

made Route 390 and the bypass a U.S. Department of Transportation project of national significance, tollway spokesman Dan Rozek said. And once the extension is built, could a western terminal at O’Hare — instead of the minimalist parking lot and a bus ride currently on tap — be far behind? “The Elgin-O’Hare project is a huge, huge step in the direction of a western terminal and more economic development all around the region,” Cronin said. Meanwhile, the big traffic pain that is I-90 widening will deliver significant rewards at the end of 2016. Along with an extra lane in each direction from O’Hare to Rockford, drivers will benefit from high-tech digital signs that convey road conditions in real time. Motorists will be given advance notice of crashes, lane changes and traffic. “As the nation’s longest interstate, the I-90 corridor plays a critical role in the national transportation system and is essential to northern Illinois’ continued economic growth and vitality,” Rozek said. The tollway is also adding and opening up I-90 interchanges. The redo is “already bringing economic development,” said Metropolitan Planning Council Vice President Peter Skosey, adding the region is overdue for easy access to IKEA from I-90 in Schaumburg.

B r i a n H i l l / bhill@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Construction continues on I-90 and the Meacham Road interchange.

But growth isn’t limited to just getting people around in cars. The I-90 project allows Pace to put express buses on the shoulder. The ElginO’Hare expansion also includes transit and bike path connections. The combination of express buses and ParkN-Rides at strategic locations will bring employees to suburban jobs and help employers access a larger work pool, Skosey explained. “One of the great stories of 1-90 from the get-go is how they integrated transit.”

O’Hare modernization This fall will mark the opening of another runway at O’Hare International Airport. Chicago is adding four new east/west runways and extending two existing ones, a nearly $9 billion investment in the busiest airport in the nation. The shift to an east/west traffic flow has caused new aircraft patterns and noise concerns. While that debate continues, few dispute the power of O’Hare as an economic engine for the region. Chicago estimates O’Hare contributes more than $38 billion to the economy of the six counties and sustains about 450,000 jobs directly and indirectly. Airport expansion could generate an extra $18 billion and create 195,000 new jobs, the city projects. Mayor Rahm Emanuel, in a speech to the City

Club in June, attributed recent economic successes to O’Hare and Midway International Airport. “Out of the 10 major metropolitan areas (in the U.S.) last year, Chicagoland had 12,000 businesses created,” Emanuel said. “That’s No. 2 in the United States.”

New interchanges After years of Chicago-focused travel, the Illinois tollway is opening up a number of Jane Addams Tollway (I-90) interchanges. Previous configurations focused on access to and from Chicago. Now, the agency is adding or retrofitting eight interchanges: Elmhurst Road, Meacham Road, Roselle Road, Barrington Road, Route 25, Route 31, Genoa Road and Irene Road. At Roselle Road, the tollway is building ramps to and from the west. As a result, Sunstar Americas, a dental equipment supplier, is moving to that location. “Access was a big component for them,” Schaumburg Director of Transportation Karyn Robles said. The Barrington Road interchange project will improve access to St. Alexius Medical Center. “This project is another tremendous example of state and local governments working together

See Page 37


advance transportation projects with regional benefits,” tollway spokesman Dan Rozek said.

Algonquin bypass


4 90


8 7





53 294



Elgin-O’Hare interchanges

Here’s a look at some significant infrastructure improvements in the region.

Lake Michigan


1 9




90 94 290


55 88


6 When the Elgin-O’Hare Expressway (Route 390) is complete, it will boast 31 exits and entrances. Full interchanges will be at Roselle Road, Meacham 1) Elgin O’Hare and Western Bypass: Includes interchanges ( ) at Roselle Road, Meacham Road, I-290, Arlington Heights Road, Wood Dale Road Road, I-290, Arlington Heights Road, Wood Dale Road or Route 83; partial interchanges at or Route 83. Partial interchanges are at Lake Street, Lake Street, Springinsguth Road, Gary Avenue, Route 19, Wright Boulevard, Rohlwing Road, Springinsguth Road, Gary Avenue, Route 19, Wright and Park Boulevard. Boulevard, Rohlwing Road and Park Boulevard. 2) I-90 widening and interchange work: Includes interchanges ( ) at Elmhurst Road, The economic potential is staggering, DuPage Meacham Road, Roselle Road, Barrington Road, Routes 25 and 31, Genoa and Irene roads. County Chairman Dan Cronin said. As an example, Wood Dale is envisioning new office 3) Algonquin bypass at Routes 31 and 62 7) Washington Street widening towers, restaurants, light industry, housing and a rec8) Grand Avenue and Tri-State interchange 4) I-90 and Route 47 interchange reation center along the Thorndale corridor of the Elgin-O’Hare. 9) O’Hare modernization 5) Longmeadow Parkway The $3.4 billion project requires a $300 million con6) Route 59 widening Source: Illinois tollway, IDOT, Daily Herald reports. tribution from DuPage County and towns on the DailY HEralD corridor. Part of the county’s buy-in will go toward aesthetic improvements, Cronin said. “I want people driving along the corridor to enter DuPage and say, ‘Whoa, where are we?’”

P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : T r a n s P o r TaT i o n

You could always expect traffic havoc at Routes 62 and 31 in Algonquin during rush hour and bad weather. But a complete redesign by IDOT has provided relief for drivers and retailers. The project cost $88.5 million and resulted in a fourlane, 2.2-mile bypass using Route 31 that was completed a year ago. “It’s alleviated traffic congestion in the area. We’ve witnessed it,” Assistant Village Manager Michael Kumbera said. Now village officials hope to reap the benefits. Plans are in the works to add parking and pedestrian-friendly elements to downtown Main Street/Route 31. The next step will be decorative features for the streetscape.

Major construction projects

Fox River



Route 47 and I-90

And more ▶ Longmeadow Parkway, a proposed $135 million new toll road, would stretch between Dundee Township and Barrington Hills. A vote by county officials is expected this year on the project, which supporters say would ease congestion and open up economic development. ▶ The 3-mile Route 59 widening project from Ferry Avenue to Aurora Avenue/New York Street in Naperville and Aurora has been painful for drivers. But benefits include additional through lanes, interchange improvements and coordination of traffic signals. Work should finish this fall. ▶ Great expectations surround Lake County’s seminal road project — the

B r i a n H i l l / bhill@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Construction on the Elgin-O’Hare Expressway and I-290 is one of many transit projects with repercussions for economic growth.

widening of Washington Street. Improvements, which include an underpass at the CN railroad tracks, could mean a boost for retail and commercial prospects. ▶ Illinois tollway officials expect to wrap up a major redo of the interchange at Grand Avenue and the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) this year. That’s good news for Gurnee Mills shoppers. The work involves improving seven out of eight ramps. Plus new technology will warn drivers of traffic issues.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

The tollway’s reveal of its newest interchange in Huntley at the Jane Adams Tollway (I-90) and Route 47 came in November 2013. A joint project with the tollway, IDOT and Kane and McHenry counties, it cost $59 million and opened the formerly Chicago-centric interchange for access to and from the west. “Traffic at that interchange has seen a 10-percent increase between 2008 and 2014 and another 10-percent increase in the first half of 2015 now that the western 37 miles of the I-90 reconstruction and widening project is complete,” tollway spokesman Dan Rozek said. Related developments set to open next year are Weber-Stephen Products’ new global distribution center and a new Centegra Health System hospital. A number of restaurants and shops have sprung up since 2013 as well.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : T r a n s P o r TaT i o n




Roadwork Flashback

A look at some key road projects that opened the door for developments and economic growth in the suburbs. P a U l V a l a D e / pval ade @ dai l y h e r a ld . co m , 2010

Trains and an awkward road configuration on Rollins Road and Route 83 in Round Lake Beach create a commuting nightmare, as seen in this photo from 2010. After nearly 5 years and $31 million, the most expensive road project in Lake County, the Rollins Road Gateway (underpass) was complete.

M a r k W e l s h / mwelsh@dailyherald. c om, 2 0 0 4

In 2004, crews worked on roads through the area, including this section of Northwest Highway and Dundee Road.

In 2004, Army Trail Road was shut down while crews widened it to six lanes in Addison. Daily heralD File

Open to the Public

P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : T r a n s P o r TaT i o n

s t e V e l U n D y / slu n d y@d a ilyher a ld . co m , 2014


Where business meets talent B r i a n h i l l / bhill@ dai l y h e r al d. c om , 2 0 1 0

September 21, 2015 11am-3pm

Resume = Entrance Fee J o h n s t a r k s / js tar k s @ dai l y h e r al d. c om, 2 0 1 0

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The Stearns Road Corridor created a link between the east and west sides of Kane County. The $1 million project in 2010 included a new Fox River Bridge, right, and a 4.6-mile new road realignment.

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State of Auto Sales By Rich Klicki •

Auto dealers finding footing

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

Progress 2015: auto sales

M a r k W e l s h / mwelsh@dailyherald.c om

Colin Wickstrom of Wickstrom Ford and Jeep in Barrington.

Gilbert r. boucher ii/ g b o uc her@dailyherald.c om

Ray Scarpelli Jr. owns Ray Chevrolet in Fox Lake.

D a i l y h e r a l D F i l e P h o t o / bev h o r n e

Bret Matthews, left, and Jim Spellman are partners at Chrysler Jeep Dodge & Ram in Glendale Heights.

Although the Great Recession ended years ago, Colin Wickstrom still sees a good amount of pent-up demand in the automobile market. “During the recession period of 2008-2010, people sat back and watched the market,” said Wickstrom, who with brother Richard operates Wickstrom Auto Group in Barrington. “We’re now seeing the industry as strong as ever, and we’ll see that trend continuing because there is still that pent-up demand.” New car sales in Illinois have risen steadily since 2009, totaling $28.4 billion in 2013, according to latest figures available from the National Automobile Dealers Association. That accounted for 15.1 percent of all retail sales in the state. The 440 or so new car dealers in the greater Chicago area sold 152,595 vehicles this year through May, according to the Oakbrook Terrace-based Chicago Auto Trade Association. Sales for the year are up 3.1 percent over the same period in 2014, while 2014 saw a 10-percent increase in sales over 2013. While some local dealers closed during the recession — in part due to automakers such as General Motors and Ford eliminating brands such as Mercury, Pontiac and Saturn — those who weathered the lean times have benefitted by adapting their businesses to meet changing customer needs. Ray Scarpelli Jr., owner of Ray Chevrolet in Fox Lake, notes that while

some people still may be loyal to a particular auto nameplate, more buyers are looking for the best overall sales and service. “Brand loyalty is still there, but it works in tandem with loyalty with the business that’s offering that brand,” Scarpelli said. “If you get a great purchase and service experience, you’ll remain loyal because of the dealership. “And that’s not blind loyalty, that’s something we have to earn,” he added. Wickstrom agrees, adding that as automakers have become more consistent with the quality of their products, the onus is on the local dealers to develop that customer loyalty. “The quality of vehicles across the lines, from American to Japanese and Korean, they’re all nice and the competition is so rigorous,” Wickstrom said. “Everybody makes nice stuff, so the more the dealership can do about the experience — make it better and more efficient — the more that will attract the consumer.” The Internet has also been a big boost for local dealers, as customers have become better informed and prepared even before they walk into the showroom. “It takes away a lot of the mystery that was with car dealerships,”

See Page 41


Auto sales



Unique experience

New owner, same ‘family’ Hoskins Chevrolet, a longtime

Two paths come together Jim Spellman and Bret Matthews come from diverse work backgrounds, but have been friends for 25 years and have found a calling together with three Chicago area car dealerships; DuPage Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Glendale Heights, Libertyville Chevrolet and Happy Hyundai in Oak Lawn. Spellman worked in the automobile business for most of his life, starting as a porter for a Jeep dealership, then selling cars. Matthews, while a full partner from the time the Chevrolet dealership opened, only began working full time managing the dealerships last fall with the acquisition of the DuPage store. “We had a family business, Matthews Paint Co., that manufactured paints,” Matthews said. “Jim and I had talked about partnering for a long time.” Their diverse business paths has been an asset. “He (Matthews) brings a different perspective to the business as I have traditionally worked in the auto industry my entire life,” Spellman said. Matthews likened his former company to a dealership because it was a family business, a situation that translates well to the world of selling cars. “You want to do right by your family

D a i l y H e r a l D F i l e P H o t o / Ma r k W elsh

Arlington Heights Ford won the President’s Award from Ford for the 26th year.

and your customers and here you’re taking care of your employees and along with them, taking care of your customers,” he said. ▶ Arlington Heights Ford is among a small group of Ford and Lincoln dealerships nationwide to be recognized with the 2014 President’s Award by Ford Motor Company. It’s the 26th consecutive win for Arlington Heights Ford, owned by John Guido Sr. and managed by his sons Tony Guido and John Guido Jr. ▶ Muller’s Woodfield Acura dealership will move to the former site of Dover Straits restaurant at Golf Road and Gannon Drive in Hoffman Estates in late spring 2016. The current Acura dealer on Higgins Road will become an Acura Pre-owned Certified Center. ▶ Zeigler Auto Group Inc. plans to open a second dealership in Downers Grove. Zeigler Chrysler Dodge

Jeep Ram opened its first location at 2311 Ogden Ave. in Downers Grove in 2009. The second will be at 2501 Ogden Ave. Meanwhile, Zeigler is also pushing ahead with plans to build a dealership in Lindenhurst. ▶ Schaumburg Toyota was honored by Toyota Motor Sales USA Inc. with two of the company’s highest dealer awards for 2014. The dealership received the Customer First Advisory Board Award, which honors Toyota’s top 50 dealerships for parts and service customer satisfaction, and the President’s Award, which pays homage to Toyota dealerships throughout the U.S. that achieve high standards of performance in all facets of the automotive dealer profession, including vehicle and parts sales, service and customer satisfaction.

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Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

When Bob Rohrman’s Lexus of Arlington opened its new facility in July at 1510 W. Dundee Road in Arlington Heights, it became the largest Lexus dealership in the country. But the 40-acre dealership provides more than just a platform for the 1,500 vehicles for sale. In addition to the showroom and service facilities, the 170,000-squarefoot main building also has a movie theater, playground, massage chairs, gym, golf putting green and a salon for haircuts, manicures, pedicures and more, said General Manager Marcin Ajdukiewcz “There is not another store in the U.S. that delivers the experience that we do,” he said. It’s another level up from the Acura and Lexus dealership in Palatine that Rohrman has owned since the late 1980s. At that time, there was only one model of Lexus available. “Now we have eight or nine different models and you need more space for the inventory and for the customers,” Ajdukiewcz said.

dealership in Elk Grove Village, became Castle Chevrolet North in April after the unexpected death of third-generation owner Lee Hoskins on New Year’s Day. But while the dealership has a new owner, the staff remained at the behest of Hoskins’ widow, Sharie, who insisted it be written into the terms of the sale that all employees who wished to remain had to be retained. General Manager Dave Lasher said many on staff have never worked anywhere else or have been employed by the dealership for decades. “We reached out immediately to Chevrolet to get their input on locating someone who was looking for another Chevrolet dealership, and we were pointed in the direction of the Castle group,” Lasher said. Castle management kept all the employees on board, resulting in a seamless sale and transition to the Castle family of dealers, which also includes Castle Chevrolet in Villa Park and Castle GMC in North Riverside. Although the name on the sign is different, the same people are at Castle Chevrolet North, right down to the porters.

Progress 2015: auto sales

Scarpelli said. In addition, he added, being online has broadened dealers’ customer base beyond the local market. “Before, I was dependent on drivebys,” he added. “Now my market is anybody who can see me online.” While some national chains, like AutoNation and CarMax, have come into the market, suburban auto dealerships are still primarily family-owned — many currently led by second- and third-generation owners. And that’s a trend that’s likely to continue. “Auto dealerships are huge investments,” Scarpelli said. “Most will still be family-owned, but you may see some big players come into the area at the same time.” Wickstrom also said he expects the suburban industry to grow through family-owned auto groups, which will continue to acquire new brands or dealerships. “It’s a more efficient model,” he said. “You can run consolidated offices, cross-pollinate the family brand, leverage buys for supplies and advertising, and cross-function employees. “I don’t see any one company becoming the gorilla.”

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State of Schools by

progress 2015: schools

Madhu Krishnamurthy •

Technology, tests transform schools

Kindergarten teacher Dora Bodinet works with students at McKinley Elementary School in Elgin.

B r i a n H i l l / bhill@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

From kindergarten to college, students see change Public education in Illinois has undergone a significant transformation in the past decade with the overhaul of state standards, assessments and how teachers and students are evaluated. Adoption of the more rigorous Common Core State Standards in English language arts, mathematics, social studies and physical education and tying those to a new standardized assessment were giant leaps forward, said Christopher Koch, former state superintendent of education who helped develop the state standards. “I’ve always been an advocate for shared common standards among states for teachers and students,” Koch said. “There was a lot of controversy with that. In the end, was it the right thing for kids and will it help kids in the long run? The answer to that is, yes.” Common Core has been adopted by 43 states, the District of Columbia, four territories and the Department of Defense Education Activity. The curriculum doesn’t focus solely on high-stakes tests and incorporates a more

meaningful way to evaluate student performance by tracking the same set of students’ progress academically over time. “That’s just really an important evolution for Illinois to have undertaken,” said Koch, now interim director for Washington, D.C.-based Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation. “While controversial, I really do think those things are important for kids because they are going to require a demonstration of higher-level thinking. We raised the bar regarding what teachers know and were able to do, raising cut scores and performance assessments. It mirrors the direction that national accreditors ... are going.” Illinois debuted the PARCC — Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers — test this spring replacing the Illinois

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Schools with pools Palatine-Schaumburg High School District 211 has launched a $29 million reconstruction of all five high schools’ swimming pools over three years. The project will completely replace each

B r i a n H i l l / bhill@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Students at the Newcomer Center in Arlington Heights work with iPads. Northwest Suburban High School District 214 aims to put iPads in the hands of its more than 12,000 students.

T-shaped pool with a larger and deeper square pool with more swimming lanes. Mechanical equipment, locker rooms, bleachers and offices will be replaced as well. All district pools opened in 1978. Though they have been maintained regularly, there have been no major renovations during the past 36 years. Meanwhile, Northwest Suburban High School District 214 — which doesn’t have swimming pools at three of its schools — is spending

WANT YOUR BUSINESS TO GO FORWARD? Harper College means business.

$11 million to replace the pool at Buffalo Grove High School. Buffalo Grove High’s new 29,750-square-foot facility includes a larger pool, more seating, concessions and restrooms.

Other projects Here are some other major school projects

See Page 44

progress 2015: schools

Standards Achievement Test and Prairie State Achievement Exam. The PARCC online assessments allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of key concepts more meaningfully. “Illinois also has demonstrated good progress with our ability to collect data, use it to guide instruction at the school level and also policy at the state level,” Koch said. “We required all higher education institutions to change the way that principals were prepared. We did the roll out of the teacher evaluation legislation. That still is seen as a model nationally.” Koch said school funding reform and more equitable distribution are issues the state still has to tackle. “I was superintendent during one of the worst budget crises and recessions,” Koch said. “We maintained a focus on instruction and tried to make good decisions that were the least impactful to school districts.”

Discover the following Harper College business resources and how they can take your employees – and your company – to the next level. • Harper College for Business: Offering comprehensive, customized business learning solutions to meet all your training needs. • Wojcik Conference Center at Harper College: An ideal location for your next meeting or event.

• Job Placement Resoure Center: Services for employers include free job listing, annual job fair and on-campus recruitment.

Harper College is committed to the policy that all persons shall have equal access to its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status or sexual orientation. 21768 JD 8/15

Harper College serves as an extension of your organization. For more information, visit or call 847.925.6640.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

• Small Business Development Center: Providing your small business with management, marketing and financial counseling.

• Business EdVantage: Affordable Harper tuition for all your employees.

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Courtesy of College of lake County

College of Lake County’s new cafe building, overlooking Willow Lake, is scheduled to be completed in July 2016. It’s part of a $163 million plan to expand the college’s Grayslake, Vernon Hills and Waukegan campuses.


Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

progress 2015: schools


throughout the region: ▶ College of Lake County kicks off a $163 million project to expand Grayslake, Vernon Hills and Waukegan campuses. ▶ Round Lake High School’s $29 million expansion and renovation begins. ▶ Mundelein High School begins construction of its new STEM education wing with an additional 25 classrooms and two labs for STEM and Project Lead the Way set to open in August 2016. ▶ College of DuPage completes a $168 million expansion, including a new Homeland Security Training Institute on its Glen Ellyn campus. ▶ Three Lake County elementary school districts — Mundelein District 75, Hawthorn District 73 and Fremont District 79 — share a preschool facility expected to serve about 300 students in District 75’s former Lincoln School.

Harper’s Promise Harper College’s Promise Scholarship guarantees Northwest suburban students up to two free years of tuition if they get solid grades, have good attendance, don’t repeat classes, place into college-level courses and perform community service during all four years in high school. To work for free tuition, freshmen will apply to join the Promise program in December. Then, starting their second semester, high schools in

Palatine-Schaumburg District 211, Northwest Suburban District 214 and Barrington Area Unit District 220 will track the students against a list of strict criteria set by businesses and educators.

Harper expands manufacturing program Harper College in Palatine broke ground this summer on a $1.5 million laboratory where students in its innovative Advanced Manufacturing Program will train for careers in mechatronics/automation, precision machining, metal fabrication and supply chain management/logistics. The 6,000-square-foot facility on the college’s Palatine campus is funded in part through a $500,000 grant from the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association. Once completed this fall, it will double the size of the college’s current manufacturing lab, training up to 600 students annually.

Hanover Park work center Elgin Community College and Harper College opened their Education and Work Center in Hanover Park in August 2014. The 10,900-square-foot space at 6704 Barrington Road in the Hanover Square shopping center offers resources for the unemployed. Harper and ECC will contribute $250,000 annually for three years for

See Page 46

Courtesy of Harper College

A rendering of the $1.5 million laboratory for Harper College’s Advanced Manufacturing Program. Officials say the new facility will double the size of the program’s current lab and train about 600 students a year for jobs in high-tech fields.

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“I always wanted to be an entrepreneur. From the moment I said ‘I’m going to start a business,’ I haven’t looked back. College of DuPage has been my only educational tool. I owe a lot to College of DuPage.” — Jackie Camacho-Ruiz, founder and director of JJR Marketing, author, speaker, cancer survivor, motivational comic book character and College of DuPage graduate

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Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

Apply now at

progress 2015: schools

HOW FAR YOU GO depends on where you start.

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S t e v e L u n d y / s l un dy @ dai l y h e r al d. c om

progress 2015: schools

The Common Core lesson teaches kids how to ask and answer questions about books.

Schools Continued

operations. Both schools will offer free adult education courses and counseling on financial aid and scholarships. In addition, the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership will provide job training.

Early learning initiatives An Elgin group is trying to help more disadvantaged children gain access to quality early childhood education programs so they are better prepared to enter kindergarten. Elgin has been named an Illinois Early Childhood Innovation Zone — a designation given to communities that will serve as laboratories for the state to test strategies for increasing enrollment of underserved high-needs children into high-quality early learning programs. That includes children who come from low-income families or teen parent households, are homeless or under Illinois Department of Children and Family Services supervision, and have disabilities or language barriers. The federally funded initiative is connected to $80 million in preschool expansion grants awarded to suburban school districts in December to expand access to full-day preschool for 4-year-olds in 18 communities. Elgin Area School District U-46 will receive about $2.4 million for each of the next four years to expand access to full-day preschool to an extra 200 additional kids yearly starting this fall.

iPads for all Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

B r i a n H i L L / bhill@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Allison Ramirez, 3, of Elgin, sorts and organizes toys during “drop and play” classroom at McKinley Elementary School in Elgin.

Northwest Suburban High School District 214 aims to get iPads into the hands of its more than 12,000 students in just a few years. Starting this fall, Buffalo Grove and Elk Grove high schools will be fully 1:1, meaning every student will have an iPad to use in class and at home. The district’s other four high schools and alternative programs will join with full implementation at the start of the 2016-17 school year. More than 9,000 iPads already have been distributed and many classes are phasing out textbooks. By the 2017-18 school year, the entire district will have moved to a digital curriculum, eliminating physical textbooks from sight.

CREATIVE WAYS FOR COMPANIES TO REMAIN SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE The most effective way for companies to make an impact in the community using non-traditional support is to establish a strong partnership with a local charity whose mission aligns with their core values. United Way of Lake County offers several ways companies can demonstrate their support to charities that are just as valuable as writing a check and make a positive impact on the community as well as their own bottom line. Gifts of goods or services, such as in-kind donations and volunteer time, are extremely valuable to charities and can provide a creative way for companies to make an impact in the community. Companies who implement these unique community partnerships will begin to view the “charity” as something much more than an organization looking for money, but rather a partner in building a strong corporate social responsibility program. To learn more about the opportunities available with United Way of Lake County, visit:


State of retail by Anna Marie Kukec •

Shoppers demand —and get — modern malls

dAILy heRALd FILe PhoTo


Progress 2015: Malls

Fashion Outlets of Chicago in Rosemont could see an expansion.


Upgrades attract fresh money

B o B C h w e d y k / b chwed yk@d a ilyher a ld . co m

New carpeting is part of Woodfield Mall’s remodeling project.

facelifts, others are being reviewed after suffering the loss of tenants and shoppers, including the Huntley Outlet Center. Despite some economic woes, shoppers demand more options, experts said, and the numbers show it. The number of shopping malls actually has increased nationwide and in Illinois, according to data gathered by New York-based International Council of Shopping Centers Inc. and Chicago-based CoStar Realty Information Inc. Nationwide, there were 114,957 shopping centers in 2014, up from 114,711 in 2013. Illinois had 4,499 in 2014, compared to 4,489 in 2013. In 2014, the council issued a report that said the industry remains See Page 48

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

While brick-and-mortar retailers have been concerned about the surge in online shopping, many now are moving into renovated and expanded shopping malls. Regional malls across the suburbs are seeing a renaissance. Spring Hill Mall in West Dundee and Carpentersville, The Quad in St. Charles, Westfield Hawthorn Mall in Vernon Hills, Randhurst Village in Mount Prospect and Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg are among those undergoing changes to meet shoppers’ expectations, experts said. The mall projects have one of two purposes — to attract higher-end merchants or to provide more activities to complement shopping, said Naperville resident David Aron, marketing professor at the Brennan School of Business at Dominican University in River Forest. “Now, window shopping is an online experience, price comparison is an online experience, and so much shopping is done online that the malls we grew up with are just no longer sustainable,” Aron said. “The high-end stores are the tenants desired by mall developers. Low-end stores are harder pressed to generate the volume they need to survive, let alone pay the rent, in a shopping mall environment.” While some iconic malls are undergoing multimillion-dollar

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Malls Continued

“successful, vibrant and vital to commerce now and well into the future.” Consumers expressed desires for one-stop shopping trips, being able to “touch and feel” merchandise and buying things immediately, the report said. Despite the challenges, brick-and-mortar malls can continue to have a place in the market, said Phyllis Ezop, president of Ezop And Associates, a consulting firm in LaGrange Park. “There is still a sizable pool of consumers nearby that can be attracted to the mall,” Ezop said. “But malls can’t sit still during these times of change. Malls must adapt to changing conditions in their markets. As a result, malls are investing in renovations and expansion efforts.”

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

Progress 2015: Malls

Woodfield Mall


Oakbrook Center in Oak Brook has completed its renovations for shoppers to enjoy.

One of the nation’s premier shopping malls and a tourist destination, Woodfield Mall is undergoing a $13.9 million renovation, transforming from the 1970s to 2015, General Manager David Gott said. The reconstruction will provide better seating and access for those with special needs, offer more room for events in some areas, replace two elevators and add a third one, and update the escalators by November. New flooring and carpeting may be complete around October, Gott said. “We’re making a great mall even better,” Gott said. Gott said Woodfield stores’ revenues have been good. But new mall owner Simon Property Group wanted to improve the look and provide consumers with what they want, he said. Modernization was an important factor, Gott said. “With an asset like Woodfield, there are many layers in it and we had to digest what we had before planning what to do with it,” he DAILY HERALD FILE PHOTO said. Spring Hill Mall in West Dundee and Carpentersville is undergoing a major renovation centered around a 12-screen movie theater. The Quad The revitalization of Charlestowne Mall into The Quad has been a long journey for developers and St. Charles officials. The developers aim to announce new tenants by Labor Day so the mall can open in 2017, said Daniel Krausz, principal with The Krausz Companies, based in San Francisco. “The area has a strong demographic and a lot of shoppers drive by here every day,” Krausz said. “We feel this market is underserved.” The enclosed mall was bought reportedly for about $9.5 million in 2013 and broke ground last year on the projected $80 million in renovations. Some renovations include giving it a “gathering place” or town square feel, Krausz said. He also plans to add higher-end and mid-end restaurants and retailers. “The consumers are looking for more options for a Friday night instead of driving to Oak Brook or somewhere else,” he said. But Charlestowne had been floundering for so long, it has been more difficult to transform it into the Quad rather than starting from

See Page 49


Westfield Hawthorn Mall in Vernon Hills has been undergoing a $50 million renovation.

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Randhurst Village in Mount Prospect has been sold again and may see another makeover.


scratch, he said. “If this was a new project, this would be an easy sell based on the demographics and demand here,” he said. “But this mall has had a long history of decline and hasn’t had new tenants in a while. That has made things more difficult for us.”

Spring Hill Mall

Westfield Hawthorn Mall A $50 million renovation at Westfield Hawthorn includes a 1,200-seat AMC theater, a major part of the project that began in 2013. The expansion also involves three mall entrances and a fourth for the AMC, new restaurants including Smashburger and Maggiano’s Little Italy, a revamped food court, a Dave & Buster’s and other features. Westfield aims to rebrand the 1970s-era mall as a dining-and-entertainment destination that features shopping at major retailers.

Randhurst Village Tarrytown, N.Y.-based DLC Management Corp. acquired Mount Prospect-based Randhurst Village in June, aiming to expand and revitalize the center with more retail, dining and entertainment options. DLC likely will need some time to evaluate what sort of upgrades it would do. This could be the mall’s second major renovation in about three years. The legendary shopping mall underwent a $200 million renovation in 2012 to boost consumer interest. But then it was put up for sale. The mall is 92 percent leased.

Oakbrook Center Oakbrook Center in Oak Brook. an outdoor mall for more than 50 years, already underwent

a $30 million renovation in 2013 and 2014, including a spiraling fountain near the center of the mall, and the new Village Green with an open lawn area for seasonal entertainment and events. On the west side, an enclosed glass pavilion provides shoppers with soft seating, tables and a fireplace. Other smaller fountains have been installed. In addition, stores and restaurants were added. The lower level near Neiman Marcus was converted into a Perry’s Steakhouse, and the former Bloomingdale’s site features six individual retailers.

Around the outlets ▶ The Chicago Premium Outlets in Aurora is adding 20 stores along with its major expansion. The 10-year-old Aurora mall began construction on a $110 million addition last year and officials said it will show a “complete transformation.” Plans call for new artwork, seating and lighting, a pond and fire pits. ▶ The Huntley Outlet Center in Huntley marks its 21st year and remains about 50 percent vacant with many prominent stores leaving in recent years. Its sales tax receipts also have declined, a major concern for village officials since half that revenue goes to the village. The village board hired the real estate consulting firm of Gruen Gruen and Associates in June to help evaluate reuse or redevelopment options for the mall. ▶ While Huntley struggles, the Fashion Outlets of Chicago in Rosemont, which opened in July 2013, could expand. Mall owner Macerich, based in Santa Monica, California, and Rosemont Mayor Brad Stephens said they have been crunching square-footage numbers this year to see what is viable.

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The $37.7 million renovation plan at Spring Hill Mall includes an eight-screen, 37,000-square-foot Cinemark movie theater expected to open in spring 2017, mall owner Rouse Properties said. Texas-based Cinemark Holdings Inc. will provide digital projection, surround sound and reclining leather seats. The theater will open up to a pavilion that also will have destination shopping, restaurants and an outdoor plaza, Rouse said. The redevelopment will turn 25,000 square feet of current enclosed mall space into outwardfacing retail space. The redevelopment is set to begin later this year. The changes would allow for one-stop shopping, Rouse Properties President and CEO Andrew Silberfein said. “We believe applying our highly productive redevelopment formula at Spring Hill will serve as a catalyst for attracting new-to-market, high-profile brands and will further strengthen its dominant position in the market,” Silberfein said. Most of Spring Hill Mall is in West Dundee, but parts extend into Carpentersville. “The village is

very excited to be working with Rouse in terms of this significant reinvestment in Spring Hill Mall,” West Dundee Village Manager Joe Cavallaro said in June. “We hope that it is a first step in putting the mall back as a major commercial development.”

Progress 2015: Malls



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Progress 2015: MILesToNes



Jessalyn Nicklas, who died in 2005, was the founder and first president of the Women’s Club of Inverness. In this 2003 photo she gives a club scholarship to Katherine Dan. The club has distributed more than $1 million dollars in its first 50 years. Women’s Club of Inverness Society for Creative Anachronism in Wadsworth Northwest Choral Society in Des Plaines Robert Frost Elementary School in Mount Prospect Northwest Suburban Bar Association Madison Elementary School in Wheaton Festival Chorus - at Harper College in Palatine St. James the Apostle Parish in Glen Ellyn Central DuPage Hospital in Winfield Mobile Print Inc. in Mount Prospect Walker Parking Consultants/Engineers in Elgin Ralph’s Barber Shop in Elgin Lindy’s Landing in Wauconda

P a U L V a L a d E / 2 007

The remodeled 1864 farmhouse is now the home of the David Adler Music and Arts Center on Milwaukee Avenue in Libertyville.

Bloomingdale Library Community Crisis Center in Elgin People’s Resource Center in Wheaton Widows or Widowers in Villa Park Messiah Lutheran Preschool in Wauconda Bernard & Co. (advertising/PR) in Palatine The David Agency (insurance) in Elmhurst The Holmstad (retirement community) in Batavia

35 years

David Adler Cultural Center in Libertyville Billy Graham Center at Wheaton College First Arlington Million race

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45 years

Winfield Library Environmental Defenders of McHenry County James J. Benes & Assoc. engineering in Lisle Raetzke Accounting & Tax Services in Warrenville Villa Park Office Equipment

B O B C H W E d Y k / b chwed yk@d a ilyher a ld . co m

40 years

Willow Creek Church Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire Steppenwolf Theater

B O B C H W E d Y k / 20 0 2

Willow Creek Church opened in South Barrington 40 years ago.

Allstate Arena in Rosement Corporate Development Associates in Lombard Joel Shabsin & Associates (tax prep) in Buffalo Grove McClure, Inserra & Co. (accounting) in Arlington Heights

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Milestones Continued

Nigg Media Production in Naperville Plum Grove Printers in Hoffman Estates R Professional Group (remodeling) in Lake Zurich

30 years

Daily HeralD File, 2006

The Kane County Cougars started playing 25 years ago.

25 years

Courtesy oF Cantigny Park

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Military tanks on display at Cantigny Park in Wheaton, circa 1960.


Village of Lily Lake Warrenville Park District SCARCE environmental education in Glen Ellyn Midwest Chapter of the American Parkinson Disease Association Kane County Cougars Elgin Breakfast Rotary Club

Progress 2015:

Active Transportation Alliance College of Lake County NAMI DuPage in Wheaton Teen Parent Connection in Glen Ellyn Wings Program in Palatine St. Thomas the Apostle Church in DuPage County Streng Design & Advertising in St. Charles Anderson Mikos Architects in Oakbrook Terrace Custom Direct Inc. (marketing) in Roselle The Interior Design Group Inc. in Glen Ellyn J.J. Blinkers Joke, Magic & Costume Shop in Antioch Lewis, Jacobs & Detloff Ltd. (accounting) in Schaumburg Newport Promotional Services in Long Grove Real Graphix in Bensenville

Habitat For Humanity Kane County NAMI Cook County North Suburban Tyler Creek Watershed Coalition in Elgin Friends of the Fox River in Elgin GAM (manufacturer) in Mount Prospect Leslie Heating & Cooling in Woodridge Carol Ann Marketing in West Chicago DM RE & Associates (medical insurance) in Huntley Empire Accounting & Tax Service in South Elgin Erdmann Advertising in Aurora Herrmann Ultrasonics in Bartlett Ivy Marketing Group in Glen Ellyn J. Murray & Associates (marketing) in Downers Grove KKC Imaging Systems in Aurora Kopy Kat Copier (office equipment) in Aurora Magellan Advisors Inc. (business appraiser) in Downers Grove Momkus McCluskey LLC (legal services) in Lisle Pave Man Inc. (paving) in Lisle The Gierach Law Firm in Naperville Biggers Mitsubishi in Elgin Linden Oaks Hospital in Naperville Lake County Center for Independent Living

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Suburbs not just playing with recreation


State of Recreation

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P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : r e c r e at i o n

By Mick Zawislak •

M a r k W e l s h / m w e l s h @ dai l y h e r al d. c om

Golfers enjoy Arlington Lakes Golf Course in Arlington Heights.

Millions poured into projects Unlike a private business where an economic rebound can translate to reinvestment, public recreation agencies are more constrained in what they can do. However, through a combination of partnerships, long-term planning, tax support and other circumstances, there has been no shortage of projects — big and small — across the suburbs. Be it golf course renovations, fitness center construction or park improvements, examples of the growth in public recreation facilities and initiatives abound. The scope ranges from the massive $33 million Heritage Park in Wheeling and the $17 million Oak Meadows Golf Preserve improvement project in Addison, for example, to the $170,000 installation of a new artificial surface at the Libertyville Sports Complex. Also apparent in public recreation are new ways public agencies gauge their offerings, tailoring them to demand and making them more

interesting and accessible. Pickleball courts have popped up in many areas and new sports, such as foot golf, are being offered. To accommodate an aging population, the Lake County Forest Preserve District is building some short trail loops. The Forest Preserve District of DuPage County teamed with volunteers as part of its centennial celebration on the commemorative 100-mile Century Trail that connects 33 forest preserves. The Forest Preserve District of Cook County determined there is a market for camping and is in the midst of a $29 million initiative to modernize or create five campgrounds throughout its system, including one near Palatine. In Arlington Heights, junior tees are part of a $2.4 million renovation of Arlington Lakes Golf Club. In West Chicago, the $15.5 million Athletics, Recreation and Community

Courtesy of Wheeling Park DistriCt

Wheeling Park District celebrates the reopening of Heritage Park, including a new pavilion.

Center that opened in fall 2014 has exceeded use expectations, according to Gary Major, executive director of the West Chicago Park District. “This has become a critical part of the community,” he said. Park districts and other entities are in the building mode for many reasons, explained Debbie Trueblood, executive director of the Illinois Park and Recreation Association.

“In some communities, the recession created an increased demand for local services,” Trueblood said. In other areas, some facilities, such as swimming pools, have been on hold a long time and now need attention, she added. “During the recession, park districts and park and recreation municipal

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Recreation Continued

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Small cabins can be rented at the Forest Preserve District of Cook County’s Camp Reinberg on Quentin Road near Palatine.

P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : r e c r e at i o n

departments played an important role in supporting families and communities,” she said. “Organizations often expanded programs or facilities to better serve the community.” That includes the largest project in Naperville Park District history — a $24 million, 80,000-square-foot indoor activity center that will feature facilities for seniors, those with special needs and others. “It’s the little things, too,” said Connie Kowal, head of the Libertyville parks department and Sports Complex. Kowal is a longtime sports marketing executive, including a stint with the Chicago Cubs. “If you have the programming and facilities and stay on top of your game and be imaginative, (there is) the potential to be very bullish for the future in terms of participation, growth and quality,” Kowal said. Here’s a sampling of suburban recreation-related projects:

Heritage Park, Wheeling Despite the threat of bad weather, 3,000 people turned out for the grand opening in June of the $33 million Heritage Park renovation in Wheeling. The project had been years in the making, said Jan Buchs, executive director of the Wheeling Park District. “It was always a priority because it was in a flood plain and flooded all the time,” she said, adding the necessary improvements always had been considered out of reach but were incorporated in a master plan completed in early 2009. The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago was seeking water storage for its Levee 37 project to deal with Des Plaines River flooding. The village of Wheeling also was a partner. The result is a 100-acre recreation and community gathering place that includes: a 10-acre lake encircled by a 1.3-mile trail; lighted synthetic turf fields; a performance pavilion and amphitheater; and fitness and aquatic centers. The lake and six basins can hold 49 million gallons of stormwater to relieve flooding in Des Plaines, Mount Prospect and Prospect Heights.

G i l b e r t r . b o u c h e r i i / gb o u cher @d a ilyher a ld . co m

Des Plaines resident Sue Rolek and her border collie, Ignite, run through the obstacle course during the Wisconsin-Illinois Agility Group competition on the turf at the Libertyville Sports Complex.

Oak Meadows Golf Preserve, Addison

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courtesy of PreserVe district of duPaGe county

The Forest Preserve District of DuPage County’s new 100-mile Century Trail goes through 33 forest preserves.

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The Forest Preserve District of DuPage County will combine two missions in one project intended to enhance the environment and improve the experience for golfers. Work began this summer on the $16.8 million Oak Meadows Golf Preserve in Addison. The two-year project combines the 18-hole Oak Meadows course with the adjacent 9-hole Maple Meadows East course. The result will be a 288-acre project designed to restore natural habitat, improve flood control along Salt Creek, which flows for more than a mile through the property, and improve golf operations by incorporating elevation changes that will make the course more flood resistant. “It was long thought if we improved the golf, it would take away our ability to hold stormwater,” said Ed Stevenson, director of


P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : r e c r e at i o n


Recreation Continued

business enterprises for the district. “We realized it doesn’t have to be that way.” Besides improving golf operations, stormwater storage capacity at Oak Meadows will increase by more than 20 million gallons. Twentyfive acres of wetlands will be created, 108 acres restored and two dams removed to enhance the natural terrain.

Arlington Lakes renovation Arlington Lakes Golf Club in Arlington Heights has been a part of the landscape since it opened decades ago, but not much has changed. “The course has been open since 1979 and we’ve never done any

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M a r k W e l s h / mwelsh@d a ilyher a ld . co m

Lake Arlington is undergoing its first renovation since opening in 1979.

type of renovation except to add irrigation about 10 years ago,” said Steve Scholten, executive director of the Arlington Heights Park District. In January, the park board voted to proceed with a major renovation expected to improve the 18-hole course and attract new players and families. Construction began in June and is expected to be completed next July. The work involves eliminating some bunkers to speed up play and rebuild remaining bunkers with a better quality of sand and drainage. All tees will be leveled and rebuilt and junior/family tees will be installed. “It makes every hole no longer than 200 yards. It’s more fun,” Scholten said. Also, the front and back nines will be flipped to allow for 3-,

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Courtesy of Naperville park DistriCt

The $24 million Fort Hill Activity Center project in Naperville is expected to open in fall 2016.

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Recreation Continued

rent or purchase. “We really have made the shift to market the preserves to families and individuals,” Lukidis said.

More camping in Cook

Fort Hill Activity Center, Naperville

Camping in Cook County forest preserves has been available only to organized groups, but that changed this summer as the district invested about $29 million to build or revitalize five campgrounds. The offerings include Camp Reinberg in the woods of the historic Deer Grove Forest Preserve near Palatine. Deer Grove was the first preserve acquired by the district beginning in 1916, with the first 500 acres of the 1,800-acre site. “This is the first time we’ve really had camping available to the general public,” said Lambrini Lukidis, district spokeswoman. The other camps are in Northbrook, Willow Springs, South Holland and Oak Forest. A few years ago, the forest district examined its facilities, and found it needed to attract more people to the forest preserves, Lukidis said. “They did surveys and found there was a market,” for camping, she said. That led to a camping master plan and introduction of new and improved venues. Camp Reinberg opened July 1 and features: eight heated and air-conditioned year-round cabins that can house eight to 10 people; 13 tent pads that each can accommodate six people; room for small RVs; and, a large dining hall. Each camping site offers programming and regular special events for campers. Gear is available for

This past spring, the Naperville Park District began work on the biggest project in its history with the notion it would include something for everyone. The 80,000-square-foot, $24 million Fort Hill Activity Center, expected to open by fall 2016, will include a fitness center, walking track, indoor playground, cafe, multipurpose rooms and athletic courts. During a groundbreaking in April, local and state leaders spoke of how the center would benefit the entire Naperville community and provide programming for seniors, families and people with special needs. “This is a huge, huge deal for the community,” Executive Director Ray McGury said. “There’s been a lot of excitement in the community.”

Other projects ▶ Wilson Road underpass, Round Lake: The Lake County Forest Preserve District plans to complete a bike/pedestrian underpass at Wilson Road near the Marl Flat Forest Preserve. Federal funding paid 80 percent of the project, which will connect with a half-mile trail to complete the western leg of the Millennium Trail and Greenway. ▶ Athletics, Recreation and Community Center,

West Chicago: The $15.5 million West Chicago Park District facility opened in September 2014. ▶ The Mount Prospect Golf Club, Mount Prospect: The club reopened in August 2015 after a restoration to return the course to its 1926 roots. The estimated $8.4 million renovation plan includes new irrigation and drainage systems, an expanded and relocated driving range and various changes to all 18 holes. ▶ Foglia YMCA gym expansion, Lake Zurich: The expansion, which debuted in January, features a new basketball court with six additional hoops, a climbing wall, ropes course and two 1,000-squarefoot multipurpose classrooms. ▶ Community Recreation Center renovation, Schaumburg: Driven by a citizen survey, the Schaumburg Park District’s $2.5 million enhancement and expansion of the 36-year-old center includes 22,000 square feet of new and renovated program and fitness space. ▶ Century Trail, DuPage County: As part of a yearlong celebration, the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County in July unveiled Century Trail, a 100-mile trail to honor its 100th anniversary. Century Trail travels through 33 forest preserves, including the district’s 10 most popular. ▶ Fountain View Recreation Center, Carol Stream: The 90,846-square-foot center opened in September 2013. The $19 million facility was the largest construction project in the history of the Carol Stream Park District and the largest of a $37 million voter-approved parks improvement program.

Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015

6- or 9-hole rounds for an expedited experience when time is short, he added.

P r o g r e s s 2 0 1 5 : r e c r e at i o n

Carol Stream’s $19 million Fountain View Recreation Center.




Progress 2015

As Willow Creek Community Church celebrates 40 years, we are filled with gratitude to be part of the Chicagoland area. We want to join with you in making our community a better place.

Join us at one of seven locations as we begin a new decade! CRYSTAL LAKE SOUTH LAKE HUNTLEY


Sunday, auguSt 30, 2015