April 7, 2009 ballot on whether Route 53 should be extended from Lake Cook Road north to Illinois Route 120.
The question of extending Route 53 has been talked about for many years. The
Lake County Board approved placing an advisory referendum on the ballot to determine the level of public support for an extension. Early balloting begins March 16 – April 2. Election Day is April 7.
Unless there is a really sexy issue, Spring election turn-outs, particularly after a national election, typically don’t get much attention. This year, local elections for library trustees, boards of education and city council folks will be accompanied by a Lake county-wide advisory referendum regarding the extension of route 53.
The proposed route 53 extension in Lake County is a game changer. The road, itself, has an undefined path which threatens popular natural areas like the Lake County Forest Preserves Almond Marsh.. It is incongruous to build a road that, in its building, destroys that which originally made the route appealing. Of course, the real impact is the concentration of traffic along the proposed route’s arteries.
Lake County will continue to grow and roads will have to be built to accommodate this traffic. But growth must be managed, directed and distributed to help preserve that which brings us here in the first place. The extension of route 53 eliminates that control and replaces it with unmanaged sprawl. It’s predictable. Look around.