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Hampshire seeks grant for work at Memorial Park

Updated: February 15, 2013 6:16AM

HAMPSHIRE — Development of Memorial Park may be accelerated after the village board voted Thursday to apply for an $18,880 grant from Kane County Riverboat Funds for development of the 1.5-acre park, at the southeast corner of Route 72 and Getzelman Road.

The park currently has a flagpole and a bench. The flagpole was installed by members of the Hampshire American Legion. The bench will be dedicated to Hampshire Civil War veteran Dan Buzzell.

Trustee Orris Ruth said the park will have two plaques.

One plaque will be dedicated to Hampshire Police Sgt. Gregory Sears, who was shot and killed while on routine patrol in an industrial area near Route 20 and I-90 on June 1, 2000. Sears served seven years with the Hampshire force.

The second plaque will be dedicated to the now-defunct village of Henpeck. The old State Road to Galena passed through Henpeck during the 1840s, and a small village formed there. Samuel Rowell led a movement in 1875-76 to build a new village directly on the Chicago & Pacific Railroad line three miles southwest of Henpeck. The village site was moved and renamed Hampshire.

Rowell became Hampshire’s first village president.

Other proposed plans for the park include construction of a parking area and installation of a bike trail along the boundary of the park that runs alongside Getzelman Road.

“We’re looking to eventually acquire additional property so that the bike trail can be extended to Lenschow Road,” Ruth said.

The Memorial Park development plan shows a total budget of about $62,500. Costs include $14,800 for the bike path; $1,000 for a fixed grill; $2,400 for picnic tables; $10,000 for landscaping; $16,000 for a parking lot; $4,000 for a gazebo; and $2,000 for signage.

The village has committed $43,000 for the project. Not-for-profit participation has committed $700. If the riverboat grant application is approved, the $18,800 would make for a grand total of $62,500.

Construction of the bike path and gazebo is anticipated to begin this summer along with installation of the grill, waste receptacle and picnic tables. Landscaping is planned from September 2013 to November 2014.

According to village documents, “The project schedule has been identified as a two-year project with completion by November 1, 2014.”

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