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Evergreen Village Mobile Home Park relocation plans proceeding

Published: Thursday, Sept. 5, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

SYCAMORE – County officials expect to receive plans this week that will help with the relocation of residents living in an often flooded mobile home park outside Sycamore.

Land Acquisitions Inc. has gathered information from almost all of the residents of the roughly 130-unit Evergreen Village Mobile Home Park. The company has drafted a relocation plan that is being evaluated to determine whether it is within the project’s budget.

The outlook seems good to Paul Miller, DeKalb County planning, zoning and building director.

“It does appear the portion of the project is within budget,” Miller said. 

The DeKalb County Board in May approved a $5.6 million plan to relocate Evergreen Village residents and restore the mobile home park to open space. The nearly 20-acre mobile home park is in a flood plain and has been the site of repeated flooding from the Kishwaukee River, with particularly severe flooding in 2007.

The relocation project is funded by grants from the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and Federal Emergency Management Agency. The county received a $4.2 million grant from FEMA in July 2012. 

Miller said purchasing the trailer homes from residents, relocating them and ­subsidizing their rent payments will cost an estimated $3.6 million.

The estimate is based on the information gathered from surveys sent to residents in July. The surveys asked for information from residents including the size of their homes and the number of occupants in their household.

In addition to assessing costs of the relocation, the plan assesses the availability of comparable housing for the residents within 20 miles of the trailer park by looking at what’s currently on the market.

Evergreen Village residents will not be forced to take what housing the county finds for them, but the county will have to find comparable housing for them that is decent, safe and sanitary, Miller said. 

A public meeting on the project could be held in late September or early October, Miller said. The meeting will not be a public forum, but a presentation about the project for the residents. 

“The biggest part of the public information meeting will focus on relocation,” he said. 

DeKalb County Administrator Gary Hanson has helped with making sure the county is following federal guidelines while helping Evergreen Village residents relocate. 

“It’s extremely important we get this done,” Hanson said, “because it’s a safety issue for these residents.”

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