The Village of Park Forest is entirely committed to addressing climate change at the local level. This Plan takes advantage of common sense approaches and cutting-edge policies that the Village is uniquely positioned to implement – actions that can reduce energy use and waste, create local jobs, improve air quality, preserve the local landscape, reduce risk to people and property, and in many other ways benefit Park Forest for years to come. By creating a clear course of action in which everyone has a role in writing and achieving sustainability goals, the Climate Action and Resilience Plan drives and coordinates local efforts toward a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. The plan specifies a plan to reduce emissions by 26 percent below 2010 emission levels by 2025, a target consistent with current science.
In addition to addressing mitigation concerns, the CARP also highlights Park Forest’s vulnerability to climate hazards and establishes strategies to respond to these vulnerabilities in order to increase resilience and quality of life for residents. The goal of this adaptation framework is to reduce the risk of climate impacts to Park Forest’s resources and infrastructure, as well as increase social and economic resilience. Reduction of risk is a far more complex undertaking than reducing emissions, as these challenges are interconnected with the inequitable systems of economy, healthcare, education, transit, and many others. Ultimately, no one strategy will undo these challenges, but the implementation of multi-faceted strategies will set Park Forest on the right path.
The Village's Complete Streets Plan guides Park Forest to develop and maintain safe, accessible, well-connected, and visually attractive transportation network that suits the needs of all users.It lays out design guidelines, planning procedures, and expectations for all new transportation projects. The plan tied for 3rd place for the 2015 Best Complete Streets Policies Award by Smart Growth America.
Park Forest’s Bike and Pedestrian Plan makes recommendations for nine different types of paths to create a comprehensive network of bicycle and pedestrian facilities in Park Forest. The areas of focus include: multi-use trails, sidepaths, bike lanes, shared lanes/sharrows, signed routes, sidewalks, cut-throughs, intersection treatments, and way-finding and directional signage. The recommendations include a description of each improvement, design guidelines, typical cross-sections and recommended routes by priority with many diagrams, photos and mapped locations in the Village.
Park Forest's Sustainability Plan is a road map for the Village to examine many different topic areas related to sustainability and the 3 Es: environment, economy and equity. For the purposes of Park Forest's sustainability plan, five key categories were identified: planning and design, natural systems, and energy and climate, which relate most directly to the environment, economic development, which relates most directly to the economy, and equity and social, which relates most directly to equity.