Elmhurst Will Get $2.5 Million Grant From Metra

In exchange for the grant, 125 commuter-designated parking spaces will be assigned from the top down at the Larch deck.

A long-sought $2.5 million from Metra finally will be released to the city of Elmhurst.

The grant, which first was authorized in December 2009, will help pay construction costs of the city's new parking deck at First Street and Larch Avenue. The grant was held up after much-publicized leadership changes at Metra and financial uncertainty from state government.

One stipulation in the deal is that Elmhurst lease to Metra 125 spaces, which will be designated for daily commuter use from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday for the next 40 years. City officials get to choose which spaces are leased, but Metra has final approval over the rate Elmhurst charges for designated spots.

Resident Claude Pagacz was not shy when sharing his thoughts on the agreement.

"I think we got a raw deal," he said Monday.

But city officials felt payment from Metra was overdue after more than 18 months of negotiations.

"We had a series of discussions at length with (Metra) and finally re-convinced them and retooled the document. I believe this will be a good form for you to take forward," said Nick Peppers, a partner with City Attorney Don Storino, at the Public Works and Buildings Committee meeting last week. "

The city is expected to assign Metra's 125 spaces at the top of the deck.

Super Concerned Citizen June 21, 2011 at 12:08 PM
On behalf of all commuters who have to park in the rain and the snow and the heat, City of Elmhurst go {expletive deleted} yourself and may you get {expletive deleted} by a bull moose in heat on acid. You are insults to the commuting public who are the majority who support the economics in this town is duly noted.
Mike June 21, 2011 at 12:28 PM
Hey City officials, Peppers and Storino - Please listen to your constiuents and the folks who pay the attorneys bills - ASSIGN THE METRA SPOTS FROM THE BOTTOM UP - I KNOW MOST OF YOU PEOPLE THINK THIS IS A SMALL DEAL BUT IT IS NOT - HAVE ANY OF YOU PARKED IN THE DECK ON HOT SWELTERING SUMMER DAYS OR SNOW STORM DAYS - I BET NOT. If you are a commuter, you want to stay away from spots on the top of the deck, besides the environmental factors described previously, it takes longer to drive up to the top and if you are running late, it is an issue. Please DO NOT ASSIGN the top layer or the outside spots to us, commuters. We pay the City dearly for these spots, don't screw us!
Jim Court June 21, 2011 at 01:05 PM
Typically, the top of the deck is utilized when the lower levels have been completely filled. A system of first come, first served, seems the fairest. Commuters often have tight schedules compared to those who are shopping and thus should probably be given priority, not relegated to the least desirable spots.
Bill Angel June 21, 2011 at 05:14 PM
Commuters are a tiny fraction who support the economics of the city. Walk, take a bike, get a ride, leave early. If you don't like the parking situation (which I do not use at all and have to pay for it), move to Cheecowgo and see what it cost to park. Peppers and Storino should be given a raise for their butt saving efforts. That said, parking should be first come-first served, not reserved for the office buildings, banks, medical offices and others who do not provide a stitch of sales tax revenues to the City.
Super Concerned Citizen June 21, 2011 at 09:52 PM
Leaving early won't change the fact that commuters are regulated to least desirable spots and I don't think you are seeing the big picture. "A tiny fraction who support the economics of the city"? Hardly. We are citizens who pay property taxes AND pay for parking AND pay local sales tax and, therefore, should be equally entitled to covered parking. Furthermore, have you ever rode your bike a mile to the train on a july morning and expect to be professional by the time you get to the city? Or better yet, when it is raining, or snowing or slush? It is not the heat that gets you, it is the humidity. Metra trains do not even have potable water in their restrooms. Should i figure out how to take another shower so that the employees and daily shoppers have covered parking? Should I take another set of clothes? While your suggestions on eliminating the obesity problem in this country are appreciated, your apparent blissful naïveté is not. Not all us apparently have the luxury of being within such proximity of the train such that trivial things as weather and traffic can be so easily accounted for. In addition, for at least the majority of people in my generation who will have to foot the bill for every stinking boomer for the next 40 years, we don't have the luxury of who none working spouse. Commuters are not asking for a handout, we are asking for equal respect. It is apparent that no one outside the commuting public has the decency to provide that
Bill Angel June 21, 2011 at 10:47 PM
Hey ya'll, I do sympathize with commuters. Do the math on how many train commuters that park vehicles in City provided covered decks and you will see the number is tiny against the 43,000 plus population. Where in the code book does it say the City taxpayers are required to provide commuter parking for a $1.00 a day. It's like $20 a day in the big "Rahm" City. Yes take a shower on this one and have a tall glass of your $6.00 laatay, no creme, skim, easy foam. Oh' invest in an umbrella and rubber boots too.
Bill Angel June 21, 2011 at 10:50 PM
BTW...how do you like the stencil signage on the new $7 million dollar parking deck? El' cheapo.
Super Concerned Citizen June 22, 2011 at 12:04 AM
This is the counter-point? Mr. Angel, your comments are insulting and and, frankly, demonstrate a pathos I have not seen in a long time. Rather than respond with intelligent comments, you took the opportunity to bark like a performing seal to have "have a look at me I am so clever" moment and blithely ignore the fact that majority of commuters are Elmhurst Residents that bring their hard earned salaries home to Elmhurst to spend in Elmhurst. Me being one of them. Moreover, why are the commuters not entitled to covered parking? or at least an equal shot at such covered parking? As a tax payer in the city of elmhurst, I pay for the parking AND pay for the parking permit. Furthermore, rather than respond to the comments, you further took the opportunity to take a cheap shot at the new mayor of Chicago. Which is completely irrelevant to the discussion at hand. Beside, I get my red-eye at Elijah's because I like to keep it local. I take from your comments that you are typical old time resident of elmhurst: cranky, self-possessed and anyone who dares disagrees with you or any old time Elmhurst resident should just move. ("We walked across the tracks both ways up hill....and we LIKED IT [pulls up belt above chest]). Without the money that is currently pulled in by us commuters, this would be a dying town like Villa Park. In the end, one turn deserves another: you are a pinhead....
Bill Angel June 23, 2011 at 10:49 PM
Super Concerned Citizen, I stand by the fact that there is a tiny amount of commuters that use the parking decks compared to the total amount of residents. Give me a break with your socialistic model that others should pay for commuter parking that others never never use, nor do a lions share of shoppers. Those decks are a huge drain on City revenues by way of lost opportunities, lost property tax and sales tax revenues. If you were to quietly depart from this great City, I really don't think anyone (except your mirror) would notice. Pay the freight, man up, park on the top of the deck per ordinance , and pay the $2 bucks a day parking. Typical liberal, attack the messenger and attack the person. Villa Park is where I happen to have grown up... so go pound sand at Oak Street Beach on your 2 hour lunch break. You have so many issues with Elmhurst, do what Alderman Vanek suggests....Get out of town!
Super Concerned Citizen June 23, 2011 at 11:28 PM
Nice retort.
Super Concerned Citizen June 24, 2011 at 12:51 AM
Btw. My plan is to continue to my Bon mots and me and my ilk WILL turn elmhurst back into.a democracy and, as we sit around the bon fire of burning American in loving support of the First amendment, we will relish the sight of the heads of you and other fox news watching zombies pop off and explode with sound and fury demonstrating what was contained inside those heads...nothing
Super Concerned Citizen June 24, 2011 at 12:52 AM
Flags, burnig American flags
Karen Chadra (Editor) June 24, 2011 at 02:53 AM
Wow. Always keeping it interesting, Bill Angel and Super Concerned Citizen.
Jim Court June 28, 2011 at 12:49 AM
The reality is that we have this garage and we should use it as intelligently as possible in ways that truly benefit our community. If I "complain" it is in the spirit of being constructive, not just to gripe.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »