Welcome to the June 2010 J.P.A.C. Newsletter online

Published by Jackson Park Advisory Council, a recognized advisory council to the Chicago Park District.

Editor Gary M. Ossewaarde

Sited in http://www.hydepark.org, website of Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference

Jackson Park/JPAC home. hydepark.org Parks home. hydepark.org home

Page contents:

Front page: June 14 agenda, issue contents, vitae, announcements

Page 2- Minutes of the May 10 2010 meeting


Jackson Park Advisory Council Meeting Minutes May 10, 2010

Ross Petersen opened the meeting at 7:35 p.m. The agenda was accepted; the May minutes were accepted as presented.

Zhanna Yermakov, Chicago Park District Department of Natural Resources, distributed and discussed the Wooded Island Habitat Restoration Plan for 2009-10 and announced a planning walk-through on the Island June 9, noon-2 p.m., meeting on the Darrow Bridge. Restoration work and plantings are staggered by section over several years. The first go around of the Island, including the most intensive work, is drawing to a close this year. There is still reworking to do near Osaka garden (in fall 2010) and various small areas. 31 species are on the planting list, intended to promote diversity and a three-dimensional habitat consisting of ground, mid and canopy layers. Healthy forests and savannas have many plants at the ground level tapering to a small number of canopy trees; it’s been found to be better for birds and other animals if the ground shrubs are in clusters. In addition, growth is planned to be heavier around the perimeter of the Island, more sparse in the center.

The best way of growing shrubs for planting, Ms. Yermakov said, is in what’s called “grow bags,” which have peat and keep most of the roots with the plant. Also, the best size for planting trees is 1½ to 2½ inches in diameter. Aside from the Wooded Island replanting, 22 trees from Possibility Place are being planted north of the Wooded Island north bridge, thanks to Exelon Corp. Mr. Petersen said there should be an examination of the shore plantings to see what may be needed there.

Security issues and need for patrol were discussed, including between Cornell Drive and the west lagoon—work orders have been submitted for overgrowth reduction and opening—and on the Island and Osaka Garden at night. 3rd District Chicago Police distributed material and announcements of seminars and a Resource Fair.

Keronn Walker from B.I.G. Baseball Academy returned with concepts for baseball field renovation, discussed April 19 with Chicago Park District staff. Ages served are expected to be 6-16. A proposal will be prepared. Suggested by members was to start incrementally with what is cost beneficial, shown by experience to be needed as the field comes into use, and least involves invasive accessories needing care and security. Coordination with all users of the field and adjacent sports fields was also stressed. (Parks staff says it has to be a shared facility.) Consensus was favorable to such a program and improvement pending the proposal.

Parking lots- Petersen said he has discussed with parks staff the need for logs or other barriers at one lot to keep cars from parking on grass to avoid the meters.

Akari Rokumoto, who works for the Osaka City Chicago Office, reviewed a highly successful Osaka Garden cleanup and shore protection April 17 project done by volunteers and contractors under the Park District and the Friends of the Japanese Garden Chicago Foundation. Volunteers included members of the University of Chicago football team. Ms. Akari and the council agreed that security is a top priority—the Garden is not sustainable without it. One idea is gates at the two Island bridges that would be locked nightly after police patrol.

Park Supervisor William Tillis reported that spring and summer programs are off to a good start. Under motion by Petersen and second by Esther Schechter, the council approved setting aside $1,000 in the event financial aid is determined by the park supervisor to be needed by families for child participation in the summer program. This will be administered by Treasurer Dwight Powell. The senior’s fitness classes are growing, aided by performance on 2nd Mondays at 1 p.m. by Ken Chaney Experience jazz ensemble. A Resource Career Fair for youth and above, including ex offenders was announced for May 22, field house.

The meeting was adjourned. Next meeting June 14, 7:30 pm at the fieldhouse.

Respectfully submitted,
Gary Ossewaarde, Secretary