Letter: Planning, preparation keys to successful village

By on March 12, 2009

Planning and preparation are the keys to careful management of the continued pressures of growth on Elburn. In the late-90s, Elburn was still a sleepy little farm town, but ever since the millennium, the westward expansion of development has become a force to be reckoned with.

Elburn has grown from just under 2,000 residents in the late-90s to an official census count of 4,721. When the next census is taken, that number will surely surpass the 5,000 mark. The Planning Commission and the Village Board have worked diligently over the last 15 years with the developers, both commercial and residential, to form the village into what it is today. The vision of “better, not just bigger” has been the mantra we have held to.

The village’s policy to allow development only within Elburn’s “Emerald Necklace” borders of Welch Creek, Blackberry Creek and Virgil Ditch, before annexing any land beyond this, allows us to keep and carefully manage our growth within those natural boundaries.

Aggressive land acquisition has become the bane of some of our neighboring communities—a trap we have been careful to avoid. No land is annexed into our village until a carefully negotiated pre-annexation agreement is entered into with a developer to insure that sufficient impact fees for essential services and other amenities are provided, that the development is consistent with our sense of place and community and that the build-out will be constantly monitored through staged phases as a planned unit development.

Developers are always encouraged to present their plans knowing that they must meet these guidelines. We, as your elected village officials, are committed to developing with thoughtfulness and diligent attention to the impact we will have on our present residents and on our future generations. While the housing market has slowed, our commercial development continues to remain healthy. Route 47 continues to be our primary retail corridor, while North Street is home to our governmental bodies. I encourage every citizen to go to the Village Hall or Elburn’s website and take a look at some of the existing and proposed developments.

Thoughtful planning and preparation, these words will continue to serve us well as we cross in to the second decade of the second millennium.

Patricia Romke
Village President of Elburn


  1. Patricia Romke

    March 16, 2009 at 12:31 PM


    During the last fifteen years Elburn has experienced tremendous growth. One of the consequences of that growth has been the virtual division of the village into three distinct areas, each with their own distinct culture and needs.

    Prior to 1980, if you said you lived in Elburn, you likely lived within 3 or 4 blocks on either side of the rail line and 3 bocks east or west of Route 47. Beginning in the early 1990s, however, the Prairie Valley, Prairie Highlands and the Theis Property annexations created substantial development within the Village’s newly expanded northern border. The continued build out of the Blackberry Creek subdivision, though temporarily slowed, will drive our population growth in our southern area for many years.

    As your Village President, I promise to work to unify our village by providing greater transparency in government. This will be accomplished though improved communication on our website, through the newspapers and inserts in water bills, it is important to provide a clear message about what the Village is working on and when fitting, obtain feedback. Our residents should have a more user-friendly website. We will provide more information to include, but not be limited to; proposed new developments, infrastructure needs within the various areas of our Village, compliance with new legislative mandates, changes to local ordinances, and upcoming events. By enhancing internet accessibility, I would like to encourage more participation in the process. Most of our younger residents go to the Web to get news and information, and while we have used our Village website as a communication tool, it could be enhanced to provide more up to date information about ongoing projects and more timely posting of minutes from our meetings. I would like to see a more prominent link on the website for the Town and Country Library, the Elburn Chamber of Commerce and the Community Center. The Friends of the Library are planning several activities including a plant sale in May and they are also working on a community cookbook. Our police department has established a CERT (citizens emergency response team) through grant money from FEMA, participation in this program is voluntary and what better way to get to know your neighbors and become prepared for an emergency in the process. You can go on line to sign up for these sessions.

    When a town grows as fast as Elburn did during the last 10 years it is a given that there will be some pain associated with that growth. The needs of our newest residents are decidedly different than those of our more seasoned residents. We should be sensitive to both of those sectors. While the economy has impacted almost everyone, it has now presented us with an opportunity to come together as a village. Many residents have expressed interest in a Park District, there are many young families who are looking for such amenities and I will pledge my support of those residents and work with interested citizens to promote such a referendum during the next term. While it may be several years before we have an Elburn Park District, there is nothing to prohibit a Park Board composed of volunteers to study the needs of our citizens by gathering input from the entire community. We may be able, at some future date be annexed in to an adjoining park district through future development. During the interim I will continue to encourage participation and support for those amenities that we have now, always looking forward, never back.

    Patricia Romke
    Candidate for Village President of Elburn

  2. MAnderson

    March 18, 2009 at 11:28 AM

    I would like to make a few comments in support of my father David Anderson as candidate for the next Village of Elburn President. I would first like to thank everyone, both residents and non-residents, other government officials and retired government officials for all of their support during this time prior to the election. There has been overwhelming support from so many different people within the Elburn area and it is very much appreciated by all of us. This coming Saturday and Sunday March 21 and March 22, from 9am until noon, my father is hosting a meet and greet for anyone with questions or concerns about the future of the Village of Elburn. My father will share his ideas and concerns with anyone who would like to attend. This opportunity is open to all and there is NO charge. There will be other candidates seeking Village Trustee positions there as well, so you may hear their positions on issues facing The Village of Elburn today and in the future. The meet and greet will take place at 107 North Main Street in Elburn which is the former “Grocery Store” (Sears Store). I firmly believe that my father has a proven record within the community and has established relationships with all levels of government so that the Village will move forward in a controlled progressive fashion. I believe that there is no doubt he will continue excellent relationships throughout the community and the rest of Kane County and the State of Illinois. I am encouraging you to support my father as the next Village of Elburn President and vote as such.

    Again, I thank all of you for your support, and I encourage those with questions to attend the events this weekend.

    For further information see http://www.davidandersonforelburn.com

    I can be reached for comments as well at; MLAGWD10@sbcglobal.net

    Thank you!

    Michael L. Anderson