Comm. Suffredin Issues Statement on Perkins Woods

Last week, the Forest Preserve District held a meeting to discuss refurbishing Evanston's Dwight H. Perkins Woods in Evanston. Commissioner Larry Suffredin says they will seek further input from citizens before moving forward.

What follows is a statement from Cook County Forest Preserve District Commissioner Larry Suffredin:

"After reviewing comments made at a public forum on September 4, 2012 and through other channels, I have asked the Forest Preserve District of Cook County to defer from the September 11th agenda of the Forest Preserve District’s Finance Committee the item relating to the project.

 No action will be taken without further citizen consultation.

The mission of the Forest Preserve District (District) is to protect and preserve the natural forests and lands together with their flora and fauna, as nearly as may be, in their natural state and condition, for the purpose of the education, pleasure, and recreation of the public. The citizens who have made comments on the project show a deep concern and love for the Woods and for how the District will meet its mission. I will work with the District to develop an outreach process to insure that all refurbishing of the trails and restoration work is done in a cooperative manner.

Please remember these facts as we go forward:

  1. After numerous requests to replace the current broken and incomplete trails the District was able to do a refinancing earlier this year which made funds available.
  2. As part of the restoration it became clear that the Woods were “too dark” and that diseased and invasive trees needed to be taken out to allow more sun light. There needs to be developed a comprehensive restoration plan.
  3. There is currently a problem with fly dumping at the Woods of building and landscaping materials. The restoration plan will work on ways to stop this. 

My office is happy to assist you with any concerns related to Dwight W. Perkins Woods, the Forest Preserve District or Cook County government, at 847-864-1209 or 312-603-6383.  For more information on Forest Preserve and County issues, please visit my website, www.suffredin.org or the Forest Preserve website www.fpdcc.com."


John Brinkmann September 07, 2012 at 12:47 PM
It might not be a bad idea to include where this sprawling mass of woods is located----just so happens for those who don't know, Perkins Woods is an Evanston sized square block of land just west of Lincolnwood School and bordered north at Colfax, south at Grant and west at Ewing....and I was intrigued by the term "fly dumping" and now know it means---"dumping waste illegally instead of in an authorized rubbish dump"---my imagination wandered all over the place before looking it up....and I've been curious for decades about the history of Perkins Woods and how this postage stamp sized lot was designated as Cook County Forest Preserve property in the first place---perhaps you can provide some historical info Larry---I gotta hunch there has to be an interesting story here somewhere
Jennifer Fisher September 07, 2012 at 09:47 PM
John, thank you for adding this information for readers. That's a great question about why Perkins Woods is CCFPD. We'll keep that in mind for a future story.
Patrick September 08, 2012 at 02:16 AM
Patrick Nacey; I am not sure why I think I know this, but I believe it is the oldest forest preserve in Cook County: ie: the first one!


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