35+ YEARS, WE’VE SEEN IT ALL

We are Richard and Vivian Blossfield.  Vivian was born and raised in our home and I am a 35 year resident of Winfield.

We live on a large lot, almost 4 acres, on Garys Mill Rd in Southwest Winfield…during our 35 years together, various Village Board’s have changed our zoning, against our strong objections, three (3) times. The second time our zoning was changed was in the early 1990’s when Stan Zegel and Wooded Winfield targeted our property and some of our neighbors to prevent any development.  A compromise was reached and we thought that would be the end of it.


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Winfield Board Overrides Veto of Roosevelt Zoning via DailyHerald.com

Winfield Village President Deborah Birutis on Thursday failed to stop portions of Roosevelt Road from being rezoned.

And the two candidates looking to replace the outgoing Birutis say they have no plans to reverse the zoning change.  But Trustee Erik Spande and his opponent in the village president race, Rob Hanlon, also agree commercial redevelopment of the stretch of Roosevelt that runs through Winfield shouldn’t happen until after the village updates its comprehensive plan.

"Any action regarding Roosevelt Road should wait until the new comprehensive plan is complete for this area," Spande said. "Then the plan for this area will be vetted by a professional planner and will have had a full community review."

Hanlon said he’s committed to “removing barriers to progress” in developing business along Roosevelt.

Still, he added: “We need to complete our approved comprehensive planning process to understand the impacts on our village.”

The process of revising the comprehensive plan is expected to start soon and take about 18 months to complete, officials said.

Trustees Tim Allen, Tony Reyes, James Hughes and Jay Olson have been pushing to commercialize Roosevelt to create a larger revenue base for the cash-strapped village.

They voted last month to give more than a dozen residential parcels along Roosevelt, Garys Mill and Wynwood roads a business zoning classification.

And on Thursday, the four trustees overturned Birutis’ veto of the rezoning plan. Allen said the vote to override the veto was “necessary.”

"It is about sustainable revenues," Allen said after the meeting. "We need to make money. And we need to make it up on Roosevelt Road, where most of the traffic is at."

Thursday’s vote was the third time the four trustees were able to successfully override a veto by Birutis.

Birutis attempted her latest veto after arguing the March 7 rezoning vote was illegal. She claimed the rezoning was done without a recommendation from the village plan commission, which had postponed its discussion on Roosevelt until May. She also said the zoning trustees approved allows “virtually any type of business with no buffer to the adjacent residential lots.”

Because of those factors, Spande said he “cannot in good conscience support the rezoning as it stands.”

Still, Spande has no plans to try to undo the zoning change it if he’s elected village president on Tuesday.

"If I am elected to be village president and the rezoning is upheld by the courts," Spande said, "I am not inclined to rezone back to residential."

Meanwhile, Hanlon called the decision by the four trustees to override Birutis’ veto “symbolic.”

"It reinforces the residents’ desired consensus, signaled by published campaign commitments from all candidates to develop business on Roosevelt Road," Hanlon said.

If elected village president, Hanlon said he would seek businesses “with revenue generating power and credibility.”

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A History of Blocked Roosevelt Rd Development

  • How many times have you heard that a developer has never had any interest in Winfield for Roosevelt Rd?  
  • How many times have you heard WU candidates and financial supporters say they support commercialization of Roosevelt as long as it’s done correctly?

Raise your hands!!  Lots.   

It’s being splattered all over Facebook, and it is 100% a complete lie.    They have never supported commercialization of Roosevelt Rd.

How many times have you heard that this 411 blog and its readers are the source of all the hate in this community?   Raise those hands, again!

That’s not true either.  What we are doing – all of you in the 411 community - we are standing up against a local political action committee’s manipulation and outright dishonesty.  Standing up for yourself and speaking out against a smear campaign is NOT a bad thing, and I refuse to stay silent like they want.There are rumors of other squashed development efforts, but so far, these are the ones I can substantiate.

So I present to you:

A History of Blocked Developments Near Winfield Rd & Roosevelt Rd    Example #1  – Year 1988

Back in 1988, Winfield rejected a proposal from Mobil Oil on the northwest corner, aka the Kucius property.(1)  It was for a car wash, gas station and convenience store.  The Marathon station (on the northeast corner) across the street was vacant at the time.

“Zoning Board members said they were concerned about increased traffic congestion at the intersection and about storm drainage problems on the largely wooded site. They also wereconcerned about setting a precedent by establishing a business district away from the town’s center.”(1)

“The officials also feared that allowing one business to open on Roosevelt would lead to many others.  For the most part, Roosevelt Road in Winfield is lined by trees, homes and open space. …  Village officials expressed hope that the property would be developed for residential use.”(2)

When the Kucius family sued the Village, it cost the Village $250,000. (4)   The Kucius family lost their lawsuit.

The Dupage County Complex was already in preliminary construction in 1988, and opened in 1990.            

Example #2 – Year 2000

In 2000, the Planning Commission voted to recommend that the 18.23 acres on the north and south sides of Roosevelt be rezoned to make it more attractive to development.  Future WU elected Trustee Joel Kunesh (who was on the plan commission at the time), who voted against the recommendation, said it “would invite more traffic problems and change the area’s “rustic” look.” He further says “I don’t see that much potential [tax revenue to the village] and if it’s not in Winfield’s interest, why do it? I know we don’t need any more traffic on Roosevelt than we have.” (3)   Kunesh kept that refrain when he was elected Trustee five years later.    Trustee Stan Zegel said “he supports the village’s long-standing policy to preserve the area for “estate residential use” and will vote against the zoning change. (3)

“That could impact our quiet and peaceful neighborhood, which is why we moved out here, [Mary] Cooper said. “

[The village board] have assured residents that they would reject any plan that designated the property commercial.  In a rare move, they also voted to send a directive to the [plan] commission to drop the issue from consideration. “(4)

“It’s been residential for the last 30 years, and how many houses do you see on it?” – Chris Mackowiak, who supported the rezoning.

“The Mobil case gave rise to a residents group called Wooded Winfield – and the land pretty muchhas remained sacrosanct ever since.”(4)

Example #3

“The village’s planning board has approved the creation of two residential zoning districts that would increase the minimum lot size and effectively prevent subdivision in an area that is now considered the village’s slice of open, uncluttered country.” (6)

Lots in my neighborhood are approx. 15,000sq ft (about 1/3 acre).  The change in the zoning area requires 40,000 sq ft (almost 1 acre) south of Roosevelt Rd, and 30,000 sq ft (almost ¾ acre) just north of Roosevelt Rd.  Coincidentally that’s where MaryLou Crane lived, who was a Trustee at time.  Trustee John Grothman “called the ordinance short-sighted and myopic.”(6)

This residential overlay ordinance was recently repealed by the Village Board, in an effort led by Tim Allen.

Example #4

I almost didn’t include this one from 2004, since it’s about the Village trying to annex the Planter’s Palette land which never happened.  But the last two sentences caught my eye.

And in 1997, Zegel helped lead an effort to remove a software company from doing business in a residence along the road[Roosevelt].    “It’s an oasis that gets you away from the hubbub of Wheaton,” Zegel said.”(5)

Which sounds completely different from running a newspaper out of your residence, now doesn’t it?

WHAT DO YOU WANT?

WU candidate Phil Mustes has said that Costco “will be a scar on Winfield for the next 50 years.” Do you want commercial revenue funding  coming into this Village or not?   Vote Blackburn, Olson, Jacques and Hanlon for President.  And that is MY ENDORSEMENT.  I don’t contribute thousands of dollars; I contribute my TIME.  I contribute my emotional energy getting hate mail from WU executives, candidates and supporters.

 The next time you hear that Winfield has never had any development interested in Roosevelt Rd, why don’t YOU set them straight?   The Village People of 411 have a louder voice than you think.   Send them to www.Winfield411.com.

VOTE. and get your NEIGHBORS to VOTE.  Otherwise, the Dark Side(a) wins.

 (a) I called THEM the Dark Side first!

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References 1)       Board douses car wash plan in winfield.  (1988, Jan 20) Chicago Tribune p 11-11. 2)       Winfield denies zoning for gas station. (1988 Mar 16) Chicago Tribune p6-6.

3)       Winfield panel eyes development sites (2000 Nov 15) Chicago Tribune p7-2D-7. 4)       Winfield residents, board oppose commercial plan for land.  (2000, Dec 10) Daily Herald p6-6

5)       Winfield looking to broaden its borders. (2004, Mar 03) Daily Herald pp4-4 6)       Winfield’s rural atmosphere at center of estate zoning battle.  (1990, Nov 06) Chicago Tribune p 4-4.

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How did Costco become interested in Winfield?

By now, if you have looked in your mail you have seen the direct mail from the good people at RightOnRoosevelt.com informing you that they were solicited by Mike Stratis who is the site selector for Costco for a new store.

You are probably wondering how this all came about.

Last year as the Marathon & Fire Station Rezoning from residential to commercial was working it’s way through the planning commission, commissioners Karen Skillman, Peter Dopper and Dennis Clark postponed the process for 3 months saying that they would keep postponing a decision until “the cows came home“.

I was frustrated and needed to keep moving the needle on commercializing Roosevelt Road. I knew the two corners would be easy so I called the land owners and solicited them to change their zoning. They both said yes. Then I walked the length of the North side of Roosevelt from Winfield to Wynwood and to my amazement all of them were in favor except one…..

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Watch on rightonroosevelt.tumblr.com

Winfield Illinois

Winfield Candidates Night 2013

Jay Olson - Trustee Candidate

Charles Jacques - Trustee Candidate

Tom Blackburn - Trustee Candidate

Rob Hanlon - President Candidate (Mayor)

Winfield votes to rezone portions of Roosevelt Road via dailyherald.com

Saying the time has come to create a larger revenue base for Winfield, a majority of village board members Thursday pushed through a controversial proposal to rezone portions of Roosevelt Road.

The decision by four of the six trustees to rezone 14 residential parcels along Roosevelt and Garys Mill roads was made despite opposition from residents and the village attorney repeatedly advising the board to postpone the vote.

"We are opening our door for business, and I am very proud to be part of that," said Trustee Jay Olson, who approved the ordinance along with trustees Tim Allen, Tony Reyes and James Hughes.

Village President Deborah Birutis said she is planning to veto the zoning change. However, the board is expected to override that veto on April 4.

Olson called the move to rezone the parcels to a commercial zoning classification “the right thing” for the village to do.

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WINFIELD AIN’T THE FARM ANYMORE

My name is Jack Bachman. I live in Winfield on a 2.4 acre parcel of land on Roosevelt Road. When I moved into my house years ago, Roosevelt was a sleepy two-lane road. It’s now a four lane State highway and in the next year or so the Illinois Department of Transportation is going to expand Roosevelt again by 6 feet. By the time they are done cutting down the trees in front of my house and moving the culvert, I should be able to catch a cab from my front door. I would like to move out of this house to a quieter location.  I would like to sell my house for what it is worth. But if the Village of Winfield won’t allow me to rezone my property to commercial, who will buy this house from me? Winfield isn’t farmland anymore. It’s suburbia. It’s time to face reality and allow landowners like myself to move with our assets and investments intact.

- Jack Bachman

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