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New Gym For Dunne Park

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A new gymnasium that will mirror the size of the existing gym at the Rosemont Recreation Center on Barry Street will be constructed at Dunne Park behind the Westin Hotel starting next spring.

Plans at the site include construction of a new parking lot, and improved underground water detention. Initial work, which will soon begin, calls for the temporary removal of playground equipment in the park. The playground equipment will then be moved back once certain changes have been made.

According to Mayor Brad Stephens, he and Rosemont Park Board President Rick Drehobl recently met with attorneys to discuss the plan that calls for the Village to eventually transfer ownership of the community recreation center on Barry Street to the Park District.

Currently located at Dunne Park, said Stephens, is a “small gathering place” that originally was used as a warming house on the first floor for ice skaters on an adjacent pond. The new, full-sized gym will be connected to the small structure via a hallway.

The work scheduled to be done this year, such as the parking lot and playground removal, will cost approximately $1.2 million. The cost to construct the new gymnasium is estimated at about $3 million, although the mayor said it could be more depending on other factors such as the condition of the soil. A final figure should be available in January or February, he said.

Rosemont property owners will not see any additional charges on their future tax bills for this project because the funds will be recaptured by the park district through an expired village tax increment financing district.

The reason for the next gymnasium and other improvements at Dunne Park is to better serve the large number of people, especially children, who reside in as many as 160 condominiums and six-flats in that area.

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