Kane County Breaks Ground on Northwestern Medicine Cross Country Field

Kane County Breaks Ground on Northwestern Medicine Cross Country Field

Public officials, sports enthusiasts and business partners came together in a cold drizzle today (Tuesday, April 3, 2018) to give a warm welcome to Northwestern Medicine Cross Country Course, a venue that has the potential to be one of the premier courses of its kind in the Midwest.

The groundbreaking ceremony commemorated the start of a highly anticipated project and signifies Kane County’s commitment to the Settler’s Hill End Use Plan, specifying that the 700-acre complex be further developed for recreational activities.

Kane County Chairman Chris Lauzen speaks at the groundbreaking ceremony.

At the ceremony, Kane County Board Chairman Chris Lauzen spoke to the long-term commitment of many people to make this project possible, particularly to the partnership with Northwestern Medicine, which “not only cares for people when they are sick, but also understands the importance of healthy lifestyles.”

Kane County Board member John Martin of District 11 said the transformation of Settler’s Hill into a community asset “shows the Kane County Board’s commitment to my district and Kane County as a whole.”

County Board member John Martin speaks at the April 3 groundbreaking ceremony.

Mike Kenyon, president of the Forest Preserve District of Kane County and County Board member for District 16, praised the efforts of Kane County Division of Environmental & Water Resources Director Ken Anderson and thanked him for being a continuous resource to the project.

The ceremony was concluded by Anderson, as the groundbreaking took place with shovels of dirt representatives from Northwestern Medicine, Batavia Mayor Jeff Schielke), Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns), Lauzen, Martin, Kenyon and Kane County Board members Theresa Barreiro (District 2), Bill Lenert (District 5), Thomas “T.R.” Smith (District 9), Deborah Allan (District 17), Drew Frasz (District 18), Penny Wegman (District 20) and Rebecca Gillam (District 21).

Also in attendance were representatives from the Forest Preserve of Kane County, Weaver Consultants Group, Curran Contracting Co., Heartland Recycling, Waste Management and Chicago Area Track & Field Organizing Committee.

Northwestern Medicine Cross Country Course groundbreaking ceremony at Settler’s Hill.

Set For Completion in 2019

The goal for completion of this project is fall of 2019.

Upon completion, Chicago Area Track & Field Organizing Committee will manage the cross country course events, with the Forest Preserve of Kane County designated as Kane County’s recreational agency to maintain the facilities for passive use activities.

The Northwestern Medicine Cross Country Course is anticipated to be the event venue of choice and the only cross-country-specific course in Illinois.

The course, which follows NCAA course design guidelines, is expected to attract local, regional, state and national high school and collegiate events. The course will also be available to sanctioned events such as community fundraisers. The largest events are expected to have 1,500 to 2,000 participants and 3,000 to 5,000 spectators.

The summit of Settler’s Hill will have a public viewing area with handicap accessibility. From this viewing area, spectators will be able to watch athletes run the entire cross country course and enjoy regional panoramic views.

When events are not occurring, the course will be open to the public for hiking and daily use.

For more information on Settler’s Hill, please visit the Kane County Division of Environmental & Water Resources’ webpage.

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