February 12, 2024 at 10:05am

Elena Ferrarin

Article by Elena Ferrarin

Communications Coordinator
Northbrook Park District


The Northbrook Park District is delighted to announce it was awarded a $600,000 grant for the renovation of Meadowhill Aquatic Center, a popular summer destination for the community at large.

The award of the grant is a testament to the collective dedication of the park district’s exceptional team, Executive Director Chris Leiner said.

“We extend heartfelt gratitude to our local legislators, our community and our board of commissioners, whose unwavering commitment made this achievement possible,” Leiner said. “This substantial grant will have a lasting impact on our district, ensuring the continued operation of the Meadowhill Aquatic Center for the next generation of Northbrook residents. Together, we are forging a legacy of recreation and community enrichment.”

The grant is part of the Open Space Land Acquisition and Development (OSLAD) program administered by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Altogether, nearly $55 million in OSLAD grant funding was awarded to 111 local park projects throughout Illinois.

The Meadowhill Aquatic Center project is designed to upgrade the existing facility with both visible and behind-the-scenes improvements to the bathhouse and mechanicals. The park district received community input about the proposed work during an open house last summer.

A major goal is to enhance the public’s entry and admissions experience into the bathhouse, with updates to the locker rooms and restrooms, such as inclusive individual changing rooms. The plunge pool and leisure/lap pool will get a fresh coat of paint, and the lap pool deck concrete and shade areas will be improved.

Upgrades to infrastructure — including the roof, lap pool tank and gutter system, and mechanical filtration and circulation equipment — will lead to more efficient performance and long-term cost savings.

“We appreciate Gov. Pritzker’s efforts to continue funding the OSLAD grant program, and we are thankful to IDNR for being a great partner,” Northbrook Park District Director of Parks and Properties James Kim said. “With escalating costs in material and labor, it is always exciting to receive grants, especially for projects that are needed for aging facilities.”

Northbrook Park District Director of Recreation Eileen Loftus echoed that.

“I’m excited for the community,” she said. “While the OSLAD grant further secures our plans for pool renovations and mechanical upgrades, we are also committed to improving customer service, making things more convenient and creating a more comfortable entry to the pool for everyone.”

The project’s estimated cost is $3.56 million. Work is anticipated to begin in the fall, is not expected to affect the summer pool schedule, and completion is expected by late spring 2025.

The project received crucial support from state Senator Julie Morrison and state Senator Laura Fine, as well as Northbrook School District 28 and the Northern Suburban Special Recreation Association.