Lakewood Village President Erin Smith Writes

A message from Lakewood Village President Erin Smith to her constituents:

Erin Smith meeting with residents in the old part of Lakewood.

From the President

Spring is nearly here, and it’s time to begin thinking about gardens and outdoor areas and spring sports, especially golf!

Fortunately, our annexation of 565 acres of new property last year provided us with a number of opportunities to buy these types of goods and services within our community.

As you consider what landscaping and outdoor improvements you’ll make this spring, I strongly recommend that you visit Kolze’s Garden Center and The Gardens of Woodstock on the north leg of IL Route 176.

Both businesses have a beautiful variety of flowers and plants for landscaping, as well as items for outdoor themed decorating. In addition, The Gardens of Woodstock has a stunning venue for small events such as showers, weddings, and business/civic gatherings.

Our annexation also enhanced our reputation as a place for outdoor recreation as we brought two new golf courses into our community – Crystal Woods and Craig Woods.

In fact, RedTail Golf Club is partnering with Crystal Woods to sponsor the 1st Annual Lakewood Open on May 14 and 15. Look for details elsewhere in the newsletter.

As we actively and aggressively recruit new businesses, it’s crucial that we are able to accurately represent that our existing businesses are successful and are supported by our residents.

Spring is also our busiest time of the year as we consider our budget for the upcoming fiscal year, which begins on May 1.

The Village of Lakewood has traditionally been very conservative about its finances, which has allowed it to weather the fiscal storms of the past few years relatively unscathed.

The success of this strategy is evidenced by the AAA bond rating issued by Standard & Poor’s in 2010. On March 8, we discussed our General Fund portion of the budget, and I am pleased to report that we will end our current fiscal year with a small surplus and our upcoming budget will be balanced.

All of this has been accomplished without any increased taxes or fees.

As importantly, a number of important initiatives will be undertaken, including:

  • A substantial roadway program of $475,000 for the repaving of RedTail Drive, McIntosh Court, and Loch Glen Drive. Of this amount, $200,000 was secured by Representative Mike Tryon from the state of Illinois Capital Bill. Other roads throughout the community will be patched.
  • The Village of Lakewood sign people see as they turn into Redtail off Ackman Road.

    $17,500 has been budgeted to clean and televise one-half (1/2) of the Broadway storm sewer outfall pipe; the remaining section will be completed next year. Funds have also been allocated to begin a remote groundwater well monitoring program on Riverside Drive near Broadway. Storm sewer locating equipment will also be purchased so that staff can trace unmapped storm sewer pipes in the 300 blocks of The Gates. These were all recommendations of the Stormwater Task Force.

  • Per the Parks and Recreation Committee, $15,400 has been designated for three (3) new entryway signs. Also, a grant request for the Lakewood Road Bicycle Path will be submitted shortly.
  • In support of the Economic Development Committee, $9,125 has been set aside for the development of a marketing campaign directed specifically at attracting new businesses that are consistent with our vision for “quality living in a natural setting.”

The largest lake in the Turnberry subdivision in Lakewood.

Consistent with the recommendations of the Turnberry Lakes Committee, the ecological management of the Turnberry Lakes System continues.


RedTail Golf Course Clubhouse.

The Board of Trustees will continue its review of the proposed budget at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 22.

The primary topics will be Lakewood Utilities and RedTail Golf Club, and residents are encouraged to attend.

It’s going to be a busy spring and summer as we undertake a number of projects to improve our infrastructure and delivery of services to residents. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me for further information or assistance regarding any Village related matter.


Erin Smith, Village President


Lakewood Village President Erin Smith Writes — 3 Comments

  1. Okay, before I was totally against the ‘bahemeth’ building. My thoughts were why move so quickly? Maybe we can compromise with the same ‘endgame” result in mind.

    So, Lakewood now owns a well established gold course in Craig woods. Great.

    So “Redtail” trailer can come down, and perhaps a very nice looking ‘womens’ workout center can be built on that space. Inclusive with a ‘day care’ for moms who want to work out.

    A place for woman to learn yoga, pilates, maybe even some self defense courses taught by volunteer police forces just as an example.

    This new mini facility could have a juice bar, personal trainers with weight training and so forth.

    The land that is now the golf course could be sold off to specialty retailers such as specialty sporting goods, health food store, weight center/nutritionist, dentist, eye doctor, chiropractor and the like.

    All geared toward ‘health sciences services and life style educational services targeting to benefit the tax payers of Lakewood.

    Then over by the Craig Woods property, start off slowly with batting cages, (quality ones) outdoor and indoor. A YMCA approach for lessons on Karate and swimming.

    Keep the heavy outdoor/indoor activity down at Liepold park for now and the indoor soccer for the building already built around Ridgefield.

    I’ve not seen any numbers as far as ‘capacity usage’ from these big projects. Are these two entities at ‘capacity’ output?

    THEN, if this makes a go of it, then, consider expanding the building until the ‘Dream’ is complete.

    This ‘stair step’ approach will enable the village to also ‘stair step’ and buy the time to assess ‘utility improvements’ and needs, and the like.

    There is nothing wrong with having a ‘Dream’ concept for your people.

    However, we are now entering economic times, the Obama administration nor any other pols want to ‘out the truth about.’

    All holy hell is about to break loose with gas going to $5.00 per gallon for starters.

    There are way to many unknowns right now as corporations are seemingly on a mass exodus out of the state of Illinois.

    Truth is folks, we have trouble just ahead, so let’s not get ahead of the trouble.

    I also believe the Turnberry County Club can be revived if Lakewood takes all these issues, packages them up properly, and presents a ‘base’ project that can be added to year after year, as our economic conditions allow.

    Leese everything out to those who know how to operate such entities. I’d submit, when any city, village, town, tries to operate ‘businesses,’ they fail miserably.

    Cash flow is the key. Will these places pay for themselves based on ‘cash flow’ generated by the projects themselves.

    Not by “Projected Dollars,” or tax incentives. Rather by real cold hard “Cash in Hand,” operations.

    Finally, the type of entities I’ve outlined, are able to be built near existing homes without disruption of current neighborhoods nor would they jam pack the highways and intersections over night.

    I’m telling you friends, the “You Know What ” is about to hit the fan economically speaking.

    Yet, nobody seems to see it or they are just hoping not talking about it will make it go away.

    Walk Slowly please.

  2. BigBird- Not sure how you got the info for this quote: ” So, Lakewood now owns a well established gold course in Craig woods. Great.”

    Lakewood doesn’t own these golf courses. Lakewood annexed the area, so now those businesses are in the Village of Lakewood. The government doesn’t own these businesses.

    As far as your other ideas, you’d need to find businesses willing to take on those plans. The Village should not be involved in any business except running the Village. Haven’t we learned that from Redtail?

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