2021 Year in Review

Year in review 2021: City hears plans for Lincoln Developmental Center property
Considers request for street closure on LDC campus

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[January 07, 2022]   In February of 2021, the Lincoln City Council learned that a portion of the former Lincoln Developmental Center will be turned into a juvenile detention center by the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice.

The LDC campus is owned by the state of Illinois, and while the DOJJ offered full details of the plans for a portion of the property, there was nothing that the city needed to approve so the state could move forward.

FEBRUARY 2 - Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice announces plans for former Lincoln Developmental Center in Lincoln

FEBRUARY 3 - TOP PICTURE

The portion of the Lincoln Developmental Center, commonly known as Lincoln Estates, is being rehabilitated into the Illinois Youth Center for Central Illinois by the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice. The four cottages to be used are at the south end of the LDC campus, with two on the west side of State Street and two on the east.

In addition to the four cottages, a fifth building will be constructed. It is anticipated that the new youth center, a minimum to medium security detention facility, will be ready to open in 2023.

 



FEBRUARY 3 - Lincoln City Council:
Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice explains plans for new facility at former Lincoln Developmental Center in Lincoln

Press release from the IDJJ
PRITZKER ADMINISTRATION ANNOUNCES NEW ILLINOIS YOUTH CENTER IN CENTRAL ILLINOIS
The Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice will renovate former Lincoln Development Center for its new 21st Century Illinois Transformation Model

Planned central Illinois youth center will advance juvenile justice overhaul


As the DOJJ began outlining the footprint of the new detention center, representatives Tim Weber with Cordogan Clark & Associates, Dustin Erikson of Terra Engineering and Bill Peyton of the DJJ approached the city with a request for a street closure. The men asked that the city vacate 485 feet of South State Street that runs through the campus where the detention center will be located.

They requested the closure for the safety and well-being of the youth that will need to navigate from what is now one side of the street to the other as part of their daily routine.

In exchange, the DOJJ will create a new street just to the east of the LDC property line that will connect South State to an extension of South College that would proceed southward to Broadwell Drive.

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NOVEMBER 13 TOP PICTURE


Tuesday night, Tim Weber with Cordogan Clark & Associates, Dustin Erikson with Terra Engineering and Bill Peyton with the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice addressed the Lincoln City Council.

The three were at the meeting to request that the city abandon a section of South State Street. Closure of the street is important for the development of a new Juvenile Detention Center on a portion of the former Lincoln Developmental Center.

Full details of the request are in today's edition of Lincoln Daily News.

Photo by Nila Smith


NOVEMBER 13 - Lincoln City Council:
City hears request to abandon 485 feet of South State Street for Youth Detention Center

Aldermen had many questions about the new street and the engineering choices of the DOJJ. Representatives from the DOJJ said they had discussed their choices with Walt Landers of the City Streets and Alleys and also Fire Chief Bob Dunovsky. Both city departments had agreed with the recommendations of the DOJJ engineers.

There were questions about the width of West Kickapoo that runs on the north side of the campus and would serve as the only access to the new South College Street from South State.

Aldermen asked that the DOJJ figure out a means of widening West Kickapoo utilizing state property and having no impact on homes along that section of the street.

The representatives of the DOJJ said they would revise their current plan and bring it back to the council.

At the November 17th voting session, the request to vacate the 485 feet of State Street was on the voting agenda. However, the council had not yet heard back from the DOJJ and thus tabled the vote.

NOVEMBER 17 - Lincoln aldermen table DJJ request pending further development of street plan

The motion was tabled again on December 6, 2021 and Welch said it should be removed from the agenda until the city hears from the DOJJ. City Building and Zoning Officer Wes Woodhall said he had heard from Terra Engineering and they are working on the alternative design for West Kickapoo.

Going into 2022, the question of making West Kickapoo wider and easier for traffic flow has not yet been answered by the DOJJ.


[Nila Smith]

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