MINOOKA – When 70,000 Minooka residents look back from the future 40 years from now, they may find it hard to believe their community was once home to less than 11,000 people.
Projection reports indicate Minooka is expected to grow by nearly 60,000 people, with 80 percent of them living in Kendall County, a currently unincorporated portion in the northwest territory of Minooka.
That was just one of the highlights Minooka Mayor Pat Brennan told a full house Wednesday at Chapin’s East during his fifth annual state of the village address.
Brennan took local officials and residents on a “tour” of Minooka, describing areas of growth that included business, industry, residential and parks.
Starting at the Village Hall on McEvilly Road, Brennan talked about the newest renovations to the building the village has purchased, which will allow for more office space and a larger community room that may be ready for the holiday program at the end of the year.
“Rather than build new, we are staying conservative and expanding our current building that we will call home for the next 30 to 40 years,” he said.
Brennan highlighted the multitude of classes and events organized by the village as well as the many parks and open space amenities.
“Minooka does not have a park district, but we have an active community with events geared toward families,” he said.
The McEvilly Road bike path, which will eventually connect Lions Park to the south side of the DuPage River and meet the existing path in Channahon, is now in the second phase of engineering design and right of way land acquisition.
Working together with the village of Channahon, the roadway and bike trail at U.S. Route 6 and Waters Edge Drive was completed.
Over the past year, street paving projects have totaled $390,000 and sidewalk repairs and replacements of nearly $28,000 were done, Brennan said.
On Minooka Road a new building is under construction for Metal Stamp. Further down is the 850,000-square-foot Trader Joe’s warehouse and a 100,000-square-foot facility owned by NFI. Airgas is opening near Trader Joe’s warehouse and will begin a two-year construction phase this year.
“This new investment, new construction and new employment opportunities in all represent about $100 million of new investment into Minooka and almost 700 new jobs in our community,” Brennan said.
In another joint project, Minooka is working with Morris, Channahon and Grundy County on developing the industrial area surrounding Brisbin Road.
A hotel is slated to be built on Ridge Road at the corner of Bob Blair, Brennan said.
Additionally, Grainger industrial supply is contemplating expansion and Electrolux has filled the remaining space in one of the warehouses on MidPoint Road.
Several new businesses have opened in the last year, including Dock Rotz Bar and Grill, Java Jill’s, Joliet Staffing, Elegant Escapes Salon & Day Spa and H&R Block.
At the same time, the grain elevator that sits in the center of downtown is in continual use as Minooka remains a farming town, Brennan said.
“We are a friendly Midwest, small town with solid businesses, restaurant choices, a selection of places to worship, great schools, library, medical professionals and a variety of service businesses that cause many to find what they are looking for right in their own hometown,” Brennan said.