Capital Projects & Improvements

Glen Ellyn Park District continues to work to improve your parks and facilities. If you would like to know more about any of these projects, please email Nathan Troia at

Playground Replacement Plan

The District’s Playground Replacement Plan ensures that Glen Ellyn averages one new playground each year. Each of the District’s 21 playgrounds has an average useful life of 15-20 years. The plan includes playgrounds in the proposed priority order; however, the order is subject to change based on available grant opportunities, budgets, and other factors.

View the plan »

Projects Currently in Planning or Construction

Expand each section to learn more about projects currently in planning or construction. 

  • Shoreline Improvements at Lake Ellyn Park (2021-2022)

    In fall 2021, the Glen Ellyn Park District embarked on the next phase of Lake Ellyn Park improvements. A new shoreline path extending from the Lake Ellyn Boathouse to the fishing pier will be constructed thanks to an anonymous donation. The 12-foot-wide path will feature permeable pavers as well as sections of masonry seat wall.

    “Not only will the path improve community access to the shoreline for activities like walking and fishing but will also create an additional public space for events, like firework viewing on the Fourth of July,” said Nathan Troia, Superintendent of Planning and Natural Resources.

    The shoreline pathway is part of budget-dependent multi-phase improvement project to improve and maintain Lake Ellyn Park, which began with the 2013 Lake Ellyn Master Plan. Other Master Plan improvements throughout the years have included restoration of the historic Lake Ellyn Boathouse, replacement of the playground, converting pathway lights to energy efficient LEDs, realigning paths to expand green space, and adding the fishing pier, vegetative restorers, and interpretive signage.

    Also included within the project scope is the addition of a concrete ramp to the existing boat ramp north of the Boathouse, bioswale buffer planting, and path lighting. The project is expected to be completed in May 2022, weather permitting.

    UPDATE (4/7/2022): All building materials are available for the project, and many have been delivered to the site. A deep frost level over winter, along with early spring rain has slowed progress. As the site dries out, the contracting team is anxious to get back to work and finish this project.

    UPDATE (5/16/2022): Due to unforeseen soil conditions, further excavation under the retaining wall is needed. Despite best efforts of pre-construction soil boring tests, this is always a potential hazard to find this kind of soil. Of upmost importance is to build a solid shoreline wall for safety and long-term durability. To achieve this additional excavation, unfortunately, the lake will have to be lowered further. This will be done in an incremental process but will be noticeable. Work will occur as expeditiously as possible. Once the base of the wall is complete the lake water will be able to fill up again naturally through rainfall. We apologize for any inconvenience during this time. Once this project is complete, it will be an asset to the community for decades to come. While the lake is lowered, fishing will still be available; however, the District recommends fishing from the north where the lake is deeper. Lake Foxcroft also provides one of the best fishing opportunities in DuPage County and was restocked in 2021 through a partnership with Kiwanis.

    UPDATE (7/12/2022): Recently, a strike by International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150 against three construction materials companies – Lehigh Hanson, Lafarge Holcim and Vulcan Materials – began June 7 and has halted work at 30 quarries in northern Illinois that produce aggregate material, such as sand, gravel, and stone, impacting construction projects throughout the Chicago Area. This gravel material is critical to the Lake Ellyn Shoreline project and is contributing to the delay of the project. A permeable paver walkway will be installed after the retaining wall. The base of the walkway is the aggregate material that is hard to source at the moment due to the protest. The general contractor is making every effort to obtain materials where available to finish the project.

    UPDATE (7/29/2022): The Local 150 strike has been resolved and the project will be near completion in August. A concrete curb has been installed to contain the permeable paver walkway. Pavers will be delivered mid-August and be installed. A mason will be construction seatwalls that serve as permanent benches along the walk. Restoration and site clean-up will happen in early September.

    For more information, please contact Nathan Troia at

  • Frank Johnson Center Study (2021-2022)

    The Frank Johnson Center is the Operations building headquarters for all maintenance of the District Parks and Facilities. Originally an ice production building, this facility has been renovated in piecemeal over the years.

    As the facility is beyond its useful life and in need of significant attention, the District reviewed several options including relocation. At the conclusion it was determined to have the operation remain at is current site and develop renovation plans that could be possible implemented within the next ten years. As part of long-range capital planning process, a facility evaluation occurred in 2021 to identifying needs, deficiencies, and possible solutions for the facility and site. These will be incorporated into a master plan that will be phased over the next 5 years and be incorporated into our financial plans.

    A facility evaluation was conducted by a professional architect during summer 2021, including multiple input sessions with staff. Two concepts for reconstruction and remodeling were produced along with the projected cost for future construction. These were presented to the Board and are being incorporated into our financial plans.

    Architecture plans are under development and will be subject to permit review prior to bidding this winter. Construction to begin in spring 2023.

    Temporary facilities and accommodations are being devised, so there will be no interruption to park operation services.

    For more information, please contact Nathan Troia at

  • Lake Foxcroft Asphalt Improvements and Master Planning (2022)

    Improvements to the asphalt trailways and parking, as part of routine asphalt maintenance, are to be completed in 2022, in coordination with Milton Township.

    In addition to planning for a scheduled playground replacement in the next two years, staff is working on a master plan for improvements at Lake Foxcroft. Once further developed, stakeholders will be engaged for input.

    These improvements and master planning efforts will be incorporated into the referendum project.

    For more information, please contact Nathan Troia at

  • Newton Park Playground Redevelopment (2021-2022)

    During the October 5th Park Board meeting, board members approved bids for the redevelopment of the Newton Park playground. The plan includes replacing the existing playground with equipment with an inclusive emphasis, providing shaded seating, and new surfacing.

    A highlight of the renovated playground area will be a small sensory garden filled with plants that can be touched and felt as well as smelled.

    “This will be our first inclusive-focused playground, allowing children of all abilities to play side-by-side in parallel,” said Nathan Troia, Superintendent of Planning. “There will be a variety of experiences, from active and passive play to musical instruments, a sensory garden, and a dedicated structure for young children ages 2-5.”

    Project details also include realigning paths near the playground to improve access and connectivity, a new bike rack, a shaded seating area, and benches.

    The redevelopment plan was formed after gathering feedback from the community on proposed park improvements and is funded in part by a $400,000 matching State of Illinois OSLAD grant (Open Space Lands Acquisition and Development) awarded to the Glen Ellyn Park District in 2021.

    On October 13, the old playground structures were removed by Kids Around the World, a non-profit agency that repurposes playgrounds and rebuilds them in developing countries. Glen Ellyn Park District has worked with them previously to repurpose playground equipment from several parks, including Lake Ellyn, President’s, and Danby Parks.

    For more information, please contact Nathan Troia at

    This playground was completed on May 15, 2022, and opened to the public.

  • Sunset Concession Deck and Shade Canopy (2021-2022)

    Pool participants can look forward to additional seating opportunities in 2022. A shade canopy is planned adjacent to the concession building. Underneath, an area previously turf grass will be converted to a hardscape plaza with tables. Construction was completed in April.

  • Sunset Pool Heater Replacement (2022)

    The pool heaters at Sunset Pool have been kept running as long as possible but have exceeded their useful life. Over the winter, staff used an aquatic engineer to specify new heaters and bid the project. Additionally, an IDPH permit has been issued. This project was completed prior to the opening of the pool for the 2022 season.

  • Ackerman Sports & Fitness Upgrades (2021-2022)

    As part of Ackerman Sports and Fitness revaluation of the HGA Space, renovations are planned. Consisting of a batting cage system that can be configured in a multitude of ways, new flooring, painting, and installation LED lights that will be much brighter – saving energy and costs.

    Utilizing a grant through ComEd, new LED lights were installed in the former Hard Gainers Athletics space. These lights have the benefit of being significantly brighter while also reducing energy costs. The incentives for this project saved almost $3,000.

    The batting cage system was installed in the first weeks of January and used immediately!

    New flooring was installed in July. This includes a large rubber flooring area for group exercise and new heavy-duty turf that will accommodate various training activities.

    Final painting and signage are the last detail items to finish this renovation.

  • Downtown Event Area & Open Space Park

    The Village of Glen Ellyn is in the process of purchasing the former US Bank property located at 453 Forest Avenue in Downtown Glen Ellyn and partnering with the Glen Ellyn Park District to develop the area into a multi-use event and Downtown park/open space, to be utilized by the entire Glen Ellyn community.

    The Village will purchase the property, approximately 45,000 square feet, located at the corner of Forest Avenue and Duane Street, for $1,650,000. The Village will partner with, and lease the space to the Park District, through a future intergovernmental agreement that will provide for the development of the area into a Downtown open land park and event space directly south of the Glen Ellyn Train Station.

    The Park District’s plan is to transform this site and expand Prairie Path Park into a dynamic open space within the heart of Glen Ellyn’s Downtown. The site will create a “front yard” for commuters, Prairie Path users, Downtown residents, and the entire Glen Ellyn community. The project will also fulfill an initiative driven by the Village’s Downtown Plan and Comprehensive Plans, which call for the addition of green space within the Downtown area. Development of the site will also serve as a catalyst for improvements to adjacent properties and bring new events to the area.

    “This investment in the Village’s Central Business District by both the Village and Park District will enhance how and where events are carried out in the Downtown area,” said Village President Mark Senak “This will also drive additional activity and visitors to support our Downtown businesses.”

    The Park District’s early conceptual plans for the space include 9,000 square feet of greenspace, the integration of the existing Prairie Path Park, and a potential permanent stage and support facility, among other enhancements.

    “This is a win-win for the community,” said Park District Executive Director Dave Harris. “The availability of this land is a once-in-a-generation opportunity that allows the District to address its goal of reducing park “deserts” — that is, areas that do not have adequate parks nearby like Downtown — while also adding to and expanding opportunities for public recreation that will benefit Glen Ellyn residents as a whole for years to come.”

    The Village and Park District have a long history of partnering together on collaborative projects. Both agencies are committed to working to enhance and improve open space and recreational opportunities within Glen Ellyn. The model for this intergovernmental agreement is similar that which was established for Village Green Park on Lambert Road, also owned by the Village, and leased to the Park District.

    In addition to the US Bank property, the agreement would develop a framework to improve and enhance both Panfish Park and Manor Woods, a response to feedback driven by the community.

    “Over the last few years, the Park District and Village staffs, at the direction of their elected leaders, have been discussing opportunities and ways to share costs and services more efficiently and effectively,” said Franz. “This partnership will maintain and enhance open space and recreational opportunities at both Panfish Park and Manor Woods and allow for three parks and open spaces to flourish through investment and improved planning and management.”

    The framework would call for the sale of Village-owned property in Manor Woods to the Park District, and an investment in Panfish Park by both the Park District and Village that would improve the look and feel, increase amenities, and redevelop the playground.

    “Given the Park District’s potential to bring economies of scale, its ability to seek grants and effectively manage and maintain properties, they are the most effective agency to manage park assets,” said Village Manager Mark Franz. “In short, it is in the community’s best interest to shift these assets to the Park District.”

  • Newton Skate Park Redevelopment (2022)

    Improvements to the District’s skate park at Newton Park are underway. A professional skate park design consultant was engaged for the skate park design. A public meeting was held on April 21st at Spring Avenue Recreation Center. A large group of very engaged users attended and provided constructive feedback. A revised concept was placed on order June 22. Demolition work has begun as of August 24, which will be followed by asphalt improvements. The surface will get a color coat which will not only provide a visual interest, but also keep temperatures cooler than black asphalt. This color coating needs high temperature to be applied and must be done in the month of September. The skate ramps are coming in early November and are expected to take only a few weeks to install. The skate park is closed while these improvements take place. For more information, please contact Nathan Troia at

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