Create a Website Account - Manage notification subscriptions, save form progress and more.
The Village of Park Forest is resuming its Neighborhood Meeting Program after a four-year hiatus brought on by the pandemic. The program, which began in 2004, brings the Village’s leadership team into different areas of the community at various times throughout the year to dialogue on topics specific to each neighborhood.
Thursday night’s meeting held inside of Freedom Hall’s Nathan Manilow Theater was attended by residents of Area E, Area J, Garden House, Juniper Towers, and Legacy Square. Close to 900 addresses were mailed invitations to the meeting with nearly 40 turning out.
Village Manager Tom Mick said that although the Village hosts board meetings three Mondays and one Saturday per month, the Neighborhood Meeting Program takes civic engagement to another level.
"At the meetings, we have our entire leadership team, the mayor and board of trustees, and we go to the community, making ourselves even more accessible," Mick said. "So the Neighborhood Meetings offer a really unique way for Village officials to meet residents where they are."
Those who braved the cold to attend the meeting heard welcoming comments from Mick followed by personal introductions from each elected official and department head seated on the theater’s stage. The floor was then turned over to the audience to inquire on any topic they so chose. Questions ranged from how to reduce speeding in the community to what efforts are underway to attract new business. Village leaders provided answers to questions for just under two hours in total.
Mayor Joseph A. Woods closed Thursday night’s meeting by thanking residents for their input noting that feedback from neighborhood meetings has often been used to implement changes that have successfully addressed areas of concern in the community.
Mick said additional meetings are planned for different neighborhoods in the coming months. He said residents who live in the neighborhoods where the upcoming meetings will be held will receive mailed invitations.