Darch Calls Past Year Successful, Productive
Village President Karen Darch delivered her State of the Village address March 19.
The state of the village is strong in 2012 according to village President Karen Darch.
Darch delivered her annual “State of the Village Address” at a special Board of Trustees meeting held March 19. Main topics of the speech focused on the advancements in the business community, and the state of the ongoing Canadian National Railway (CN) fight.
“What we do tonight is the next step in our multi-year quest to revitalize and foster redevelopment in our almost 150 year old downtown. Our mission statement confirms the sense of place we in Barrington feel about our village and our desire to honor its charming small town heritage, and yet have it be a great place to live, work and play today and everyday,” Darch said.
Some highlights from the business community this year include the current transformation and development of the Hough and Main Street corner, the influx of new restaurants and the continued creativity of local merchants to create events that interest the community.
Although there is growth in the local business community, it’s still apparent that many commercial properties and storefronts remain vacant. Darch said the village remains committed to helping owners fill those empty properties.
“We will continue to list, when requested, available commercial properties on our village website to assist owners and their brokers to do whatever they can to fill or improve those spaces,” she said.
The next major subject in Darch’s speech was about the ongoing battle between the village and CN Railway. Freight train traffic is expected to increase exponentially through town due to the railway’s acquisition of the Elgin Joliet & Eastern (EJ&E) Railway.
“Currently, we have about eight of the soon to be 20 trains per day passing through town on EJ&E. Our village efforts at this time, as in the past, have been focused on getting appropriate mitigation for Barrington,” she said.
Over the past few months, the village has successfully transformed all EJ&E crossings as quiet zones. Plans are also in the works to have CN Railway fund the grade separation project at Route 14.
Among other topics, Darch also mentioned village successes like the recent award given to the Public Works Department for their work on the storm water management plan on Hillside Avenue, and the village’s enactment of an administrative adjudication process.
“It has been a productive and successful year for Barrington. We look forward to a continued great 2012.”