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Last Chance? Hobson West Ponds

At the Park District's November board meeting, after a more than two hour Executive Session, news that the district was in negotiations with Crestview Builders to purchase the land between the Hobson West Ponds was greeted with polite applause and cautious optimism. Late that evening President Kristen Jungles publicly revealed that the purchase would likely take advantage of the Naperville based Conservation Foundation's Buy-and-Hold program, allowing the District to fund the Park at the Hobson West Ponds over a two-year period. However, at the December 13th Board meeting no additional information was provided, allowing the year-long window of opportunity to purchase the land to come dangerously near closing (January 2nd is the legally binding date).

One last good chance still exists to create a beautiful 16-acre Park at the Hobson West Ponds. This coming Wednesday and Thursday, December 18th and 19th, the Park Board will meet to discuss its 2008 budget and tax levy. The meetings will take place at the District's Administration Building, 320 West Jackson-lower level, and begin at 5:30 PM. Please attend and ask the Park Board to approve the funding of the Park at Hobson West Ponds in its 2008 budget.

Weighing the negative environmental impact and loss of open space through inaction, the benefits of purchase outweigh the cost. Acquiring this land is a truly unique opportunity as the Park District already owns the separated ponds and the new park's location will serve as a gateway to Downtown Naperville from the large population base in the southwest part of town. A multitude of programming possibilities will be created, and wildlife will be assured of a safer passage along the West Street Corridor between Springbrook Prairie and the Caroline Martin Mitchell lands. Once lost, this opportunity will not resurface. The highest and best possible land use at the Hobson West Ponds is that of a park!

Although the involvement of the Conservation Foundation is welcome, the District could make this purchase independently, or in cooperation with the City. The Council is aware of the situation, and has revisited the idea of funding a portion of the purchase price. Take the time to ask them to do so once again. Send your e-mails today to:


City Council:

Park District:

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Our mission, included in every newsletters is very straightforward. It defines our efforts to protect greenspace on West St. as the four properties on the West site of West St. (Garden Plots, Sportman's Park, Von -Oven Scout Camp, and the Soccer Fields/forest on Oswego).Our mission has been limited because these are the contiguous public properties owned by Naperville and leased to the Park District. It is true however that the corridor of greenspace on the west side of West St. stretches nearly uninterupted to the junction of West and Naperville-Plainfield RD. For this reason our mission expanded in 2005 to include the preservation of the Hobson West Ponds from development.