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Local News

Tests, surveys of land proposed for Elwood industrial park started in June

Engineering, archaeology, environmental work has taken place in project area

Village of Elwood officials and representatives from NorthPoint Development held an open house June 27 to discuss the proposed 2,000-acre Compass Business Park with residents.

But environmental and underground testing has been going on since mid-June on land in the area NorthPoint would like to use for a private gateway bridge over Route 53 to the park, according to photos submitted to The Herald-News.

The $1.2 billion Compass Business Park, which would be east of Route 53, is proposed by NorthPoint as a responsible way to capture demand for industrial distribution and light manufacturing space while keeping truck traffic off local roads via the private bridge. 

The NorthPoint-funded bridge would force trucks to enter and exit the park and head toward the CenterPoint area west of Elwood’s residential core, and restrict truck traffic to a closed-loop system through the park.

NorthPoint hasn’t publicized just how large that bridge would have to be. But they have vowed to work with residents on their concerns about the project, saying the bridge is one of the "only absolutes" of their proposal. NorthPoint also says it has all necessary land for the park, more than 2,000 acres, under contract.

Lombard-based Wang Engineering started drilling tests into the ground on June 21 in the right-of-way along Ira Morgan Road, which is where one end of the proposed bridge would be on the east side of 53.

Wang specializes in geotechnical engineering, construction inspection and materials testing services, according to the company website. They were also joined by Belleville-based Kaskaskia Engineering.

Land surveyors have been reported on the 190 acres NorthPoint purchased from CenterPoint in April for $4.6 million.

The Illinois State Archaeological Survey has been in the area searching for artifacts while ENCAP has conducted work for a wetland study, according to residents.

NorthPoint says the park would have the potential for 15,000 jobs upon completion, with 1,200 to 1,600 construction jobs while the park is built out in phases over an approximately 10-year span.

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