Requests for New or Improved Facilities, Amenities & Infrastructure

People cutting a ribbon at the opening of Camp Shabbona Woods.
The ribbon cutting ceremony at Camp Shabbona Woods in 2015.

Requests for new trail construction, trail improvements or the official recognition of existing trails are accepted on an ongoing basis using the form below. The request will be acknowledged within 30 business days and the requester will be notified if the application meets the basic standards. If the application meets the basic standards, the evaluation process can take up to 6 months. Basic standards include:

  • No known environmental or land use issues
  • Does not duplicate existing trails
  • Does not serve a limited population

Other capital improvement requests will be evaluated as part of the annual update to the 5-Year Capital Improvement Plan (CIP). Receipt of requests will be acknowledged within approximately 10 business days and forwarded to the Forest Preserves Department of Planning & Development. Although every effort will be made to address safety concerns and smaller repair requests right away, review and decisions on most capital improvement requests will not be made until the fall of each year as part of the annual CIP update process.

The annual update to the CIP process begins in July of each year. Unfunded requests from prior years are updated and evaluated along with new requests. All requests are evaluated for consistency with the Guiding Principles of the CIP. In the past, these principles have included public health safety, access and convenience, comprehensive planning, engaging new forest preserve users, environmental sustainability and financial sustainability and partnerships.

Many funded projects in the annual CIP update are identified in comprehensive plans and needs assessments for the Forest Preserves’ recreation facilities, buildings, bridges, trails and other amenities. Some are identified as part of master plans for specific sites. In some cases, more detailed planning, assessment, architectural and engineering design and cost estimating may be needed before projects can advance.

The number of funded projects is also limited by the amount of available capital funding, which can vary from year to year. A draft CIP update is posted on the Forest Preserves website late in the year after the corporate budget is approved by the Forest Preserve District of Cook County Board of Commissioners. A final update to the CIP is posted early in the following year.

A draft CIP update is posted on the Forest Preserves website late in the year after the corporate budget is approved by the Forest Preserve District of Cook County Board of Commissioners. A final update to the CIP is posted early in the following year.


Request Form

Please include only one request per submission.


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