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City to spend $4M a year on facilities improvements

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Evanston aldermen this week approved a three year capital improvement plan for parks and facilities that calls for spending $4 million a year to maintain and upgrade existing city properties.

City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz said it was a very modest plan — constrained by the City Council's desire to limit borrowing and gradually reduce the city's level of debt.

The plan lists 16 projects for next year — ranging from $1 million to design a new or renovated Robert Crown Center to $25,000 to dismantle the no-longer-functioning windmill at the Ladd Arboretum.

Deputy City Manager Erica Storlie said that one major focus of the plan is on upgrading restroom facilities — with a total of nine beach and park restrooms to be renovated over the three year period.

The plan was developed by city staff and reviewed by the city's Parks and Recreation Board.

Board member David Campbell said the board hoped to see more collaboration with city staff in developing capital plans in the future.

Alderman Brian Miller, 9th Ward, said he considered the package to be a great plan, and on a motion of Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, the council voted unanimously to accept it.

A complete list of the planned projects can be found online.

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