Kankakee, IL… State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R- Kankakee) is pleased to announce the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget (GOMB) instructed its agencies to release grant funds towards the deferred maintenance projects at Kankakee State Park.

“This is huge news for the many residents and Kankakee visitors who are understandably upset and outraged over the continued closure of Kankakee State Park campgrounds," Rep. Parkhurst said. “This park is the jewel in the crown of Kankakee County and reopening the Chippewa and Potawatomi campgrounds will restore our park to its former glory and grow our area.”

In 2012, it was determined extensive renovations were needed at Kankakee State Park’s campgrounds. These improvements included demolishing and removing two waste water plants, replacing one treatment plant, and constructing a holding tank at the Chippewa campgrounds. At the Potawatomi campgrounds, crews are needed to remodel and double the amount of showers and toilets.

The total amount of funds necessary to complete these projects and reopen the Kankakee State Park Campgrounds is $1.855 million. Earlier this week, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources released $255,000 and today the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity released $1.6 million in grant money.

“Since taking office, I worked with different parties to ensure these campgrounds are reopened as quickly as possible,” Rep. Parkhurst continued. “Thank you to the Governor’s office and all other stakeholders who are steadfastly working with me to get the campgrounds, which are such an important part of our community, reopened.”

Both campground projects are still in the beginning phases, but with these funds they can securely move forward with an expected spring 2019 reopen date.

Kankakee, IL – State Representative Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee) announced today a status report for the Kankakee River State Park Campgrounds. Rep. Parkhurst commented:

"The closure of Kankakee State Park Potawatomi and Chippewa campgrounds was due to the budget impasse. Since I took office, I worked with Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) in an effort to reopen the campgrounds.  Here is a status update on the projects and my efforts.
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Kankakee River State Park Potawatomi Campground
It was determined in 2012 renovations were needed for one of the main buildings and there was also a need for a new sewage treatment plant to accompany the facility. Work began and was approximately 70 – 80 % complete when it was suspended in 2015 because of the lack of a capital budget.
I am happy to report this project was restarted the first week of September with funds from the Capital Development Board (CDB). The original contractor awardees are in the process of submitting increased fees and other necessary work processes have begun. The increased fee proposal process should take approximately two to three weeks with approval expected by mid to late October. Once this is done, actual construction work can begin as most of the materials are already onsite. Most of the work needed is interior and can move forward regardless of weather. The campground is expected to reopen Spring 2019.
Kankakee River State Park Chippewa Campground
This campground was closed for approximately two years because of the inability to meet Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) requirements for chlorinated water.
A new, small water treatment facility needed to be built at the camp site and a request was made for plans to be created. The initial plans exceeded the available funding for the project at that time. The project was then scaled down to fit within the monetary budget constraints. However, in July 2018, additional funding was provided to build a more suitable structure on site.
Currently, this project is still in the design state, but that process is 90% complete. Once the design is approved by the CDB, construction is expected to begin in early Spring 2019.
I am monitoring the status of Kankakee State Park with great interest as I know it is an important part of our community. I am committed to reopening of the park campgrounds and I will continue to work with the IDNR to see the projects for both campgrounds stay on track."