Winnetka Waterfront 2030
The Winnetka Waterfront 2030 plan was officially adopted in 2016. Community engagement was a critical component of the planning process, from beginning to end. Community engagement was approached in a number of ways throughout the process, including:
- The establishment of a citizen’s advisory committee – the Lakefront Advisory Committee
- Stakeholder interviews and focus group discussions
- Web-based surveys
- Public open house meetings
- Public board meetings
The Winnetka Park District Board of Commissioners votes to move forward with the development of the Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Plan. The first step of the development process included an “Engage” phase of 12-15 months to garner community input and feedback.
Lakefront Advisory Committee Formed
An advisory committee comprised of ten Winnetka resident volunteers was vetted and selected. The committee members were selected based on their expertise in a wide-range of lakefront topics and were tasked with guiding the planning process by participating in 14 advisory committee meetings (open to the public), providing feedback on draft project deliverables, and attending public meetings.
Focus Group/Individual Interviews
The Lakefront Advisory Committee and Park District staff identifies more than 200 candidates for stakeholder interviews and focus groups. Of these 200 candidates, more than 85 were interviewed. The candidates represented a variety of interests, including: the Village Winnetka Board of Trustees, the Village of Winnetka Environmental and Forestry Commission, Village of Winnetka staff, the Winnetka Parks Foundation, park district staff from neighboring communities, local institutions, community organizations, lakefront property owners, boat beach users, dog beach users, and swimming beach users. Conversations with stakeholders were based on eight questions about issues and opportunities related to park maintenance, operations, programming, and facilities. Responses were recorded using a survey tool.
Open House 1: Existing Conditions Assessment
Key public feedback: enthusiasm from the community about planning for the future of the lakefront.
Open House 2: Design Concept Alternative Review
Key public feedback: There was support expressed for reconsidering the existing use of beaches, including the reuse of Maple Street Beach as a dog beach. The only exception was the proposal of transforming Lloyd to a swimming beach, which was not preferred by most participants.
Open House 3: Draft Concept Review #1
Key public feedback: There was strong opposition expressed at this meeting in regards to converting Maple Street Beach to a dog beach.
Online Survey: Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Plan
This web-based survey tool was used to collect feedback during the planning process. 177 people participated in the survey. The survey asked participants for feedback on key concepts presented in preliminary lakefront plans.
Winnetka Caucus Council Survey
A survey was administered by the Winnetka Caucus Council provided further insight into Winnetka resident’s preferences related to the future of the lakefront (among a number of other Village-related topics).
Open House 4: Draft Concept Review #2
Key public feedback: Concepts were updated, removing the recommendation for a dog beach at Maple Street Beach, and participants were supportive of this change. Concern was expressed over the size and scale of proposed breakwater structures.
Dog Beach Survey
A survey administered by the Winnetka Park District, sent to all current dog beach pass holders. This survey received 117 respondents, and asked about how users currently interact with the Centennial Beach dog park.
Open House 5: Implementation Priorities
Key public feedback: While most people support improving the quality of beaches, there is concern among some residents about the appearance and effectiveness of shoreline structures such as rubble-mound breakwaters. Shoreline and beach erosion remains an issue that is not well-understood by the community.
Importance of Shoreline Management Discussion + Tour
A tour of the five beaches was conducted by Shabica & Associates. Residents were educated on the changing lake levels and how they have impacted our beaches over the years.
The Lakefront Advisory Committee presented the Winnetka Park District Board of Commissioners with a draft version of the 2030 Lakefront Master Plan at the January 21 Board meeting.
At the February 11 Board Committee Meeting, the Park Board reviewed the draft plan presented by the Lakefront Advisory Committee. At the February 25 Board Meeting, the Park Board adopted the Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Master Plan as a conceptual guide for future planning along the lakefront.
The Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Plan is included on the agenda for the February 9 Parks + Beaches Committee meeting. View packet.
The Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Plan is included on the agenda for the March 9 Committee of the Whole meeting. View packet.
The Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Plan is included on the agenda for the December 7 Committee of the Whole meeting. View packet.
The Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Plan is included on the agenda for the August 23 Committee of the Whole meeting.
September – December 2018
The Board agrees to add the Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Plan to the agenda for every Regular Board and Committee of the Whole meetings moving forward. Subsequently, the Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Plan has been discussed at all meetings from September through December 2018. To view 2018 archived meetings, or for more information about meetings, please contact our Administrative Office by calling (847) 501-2040.
Throughout 2019, the Board has discussed the Winnetka Waterfront 2030 Plan all Regular Board and Committee of the Whole meetings and will continue to do so for the remainder of the year. To view the meeting packets and minutes, click here.
Open House: Implementation Strategy
Consultants, the park board, and staff took the concepts outlined in the Winnetka Waterfront 2030 plan and developed a definitive implementation strategy for the bluff land at all five beaches and the eroding shoreline at Lloyd Beach. The implementation strategies utilize a tiered approach that allows projects to be executed in smaller and more feasible increments, while still building towards the overall vision outlined in the Waterfront 2030 plan. Two open houses were held to communicate this strategy, and give residents the opportunity to ask questions and provide comments. Both open houses included the same information and followed the same format. Click here to view the results of the open house and online survey.
Park district staff hosted a booth dedicated to the Winnetka Waterfront 2030 plan at its annual Fall Fest event. Information presented to attendees included upcoming projects for bluff improvements across all beaches and shoreline stabilization at Lloyd. Attendees had the opportunity to view the information on their own and/or engage with park district staff to learn more, as well as sign up to receive any future email communications regarding the Winnetka Waterfront 2030 plan.