File #: 18-295    Version: 1
Type: Report Status: Agenda Ready
File created: 4/4/2018 In control: City Council
On agenda: 4/17/2018 Final action:
Title: Provide feedback regarding potential streetscape improvements along Ogden Avenue from Washington Street to the City's eastern boundary.
Attachments: 1. Comment Card & Email Comments 10.10.17, 2. Revised Signage Design
Related files: 17-729
Date Ver.Action ByActionResultAction DetailsMeeting DetailsVideo
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Provide feedback regarding potential streetscape improvements along Ogden Avenue from Washington Street to the City’s eastern boundary.



DEPARTMENT:                     Transportation, Engineering and Development


SUBMITTED BY:                     Allison Laff, AICP, Deputy Director


Not required.



Under new business at the August 15, 2017 meeting, City Council directed staff to prepare a report regarding streetscape improvements that could be made along Ogden Avenue from Washington Street to the City’s eastern boundary.  This report was received by the City Council on September 19, 2017 and provided the following:

§                     The Ogden Avenue Site Enhancement Initiative (2009) recommended several improvements to achieve a consistent streetscape while maintaining the Ogden Avenue Corridor as a drive-to commercial destination, including enhancements at major intersections, burying of overhead utility lines, minimizing the visual impact of utility boxes, upgrading roadway lighting, and installing wayfinding signage along the Corridor.

§                     City staff retained Hitchcock Design Group to provide updated renderings of potential streetscape improvements.

§                     Based on preliminary figures, the City and NDP estimated the total cost to design, construct, and install the proposed streetscape elements along Ogden Avenue from Washington Street to the City’s eastern boundary to be approximately $5 million dollars, as follows:




Entryway Signage

$   200,000.00

Landscape Corners


Decorative Street Lights with Banners


Other (design, utilities, etc.)

$   500,000.00




§                     As the cost of these improvements is not currently accounted for within the City’s CIP budget, staff recommended that a public open house be held to receive feedback on the proposed streetscape improvements from property owners, tenants, residents, and other interested parties, as well as discuss interest and support for a public/private partnership (SSA) to fund the proposed improvements with the property owners in attendance.




The public open house was held on October 10, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.  Approximately 100 area residents, business/property owners, and City Council members attended this open house, along with staff from the City and Naperville Development Partnership (NDP).  The written comments received are attached; in summary, many comments reflected that:


§                     The proposed improvements are attractive and would greatly improve the visual appeal of the Corridor.

§                     These improvements do not address the primary issue of building vacancies and private property maintenance issues; incentives should focus on addressing these issues.

§                     The proposed improvements should not be paid for by business owners or City of Naperville residents and taxes should not be raised to fund this effort.

§                     There are several new commercial tenants and public uses that would be desired along the Corridor.


Revised Proposal

Based on the feedback received, it does not appear that there is property owner support for a publicly/privately funded SSA to install the proposed streetscape improvements along the Corridor.  As an alternative to the proposed streetscape improvements and SSA, staff has developed a list of other improvements that could be undertaken along the Corridor which require significantly less City financial resources but still help to improve its appearance, as follows:


Street Signs

§                     DPW to replace the existing green street signs at all Ogden Avenue intersections (14 minor intersections; 6 signalized intersections) from Washington Street to Naper Boulevard with new decorative blue street signs to better distinguish this Corridor.

§                     Install the new signs on existing sign and/or signal posts (note: replacement of steel posts with decorative or powder coated black posts would add significant cost).

§                     IDOT approval will be required.

§                     Cost: $40,000


Deteriorated Transformer Boxes

§                     DPU-E to paint or replace 19 deteriorated/rusty transformer boxes located along Ogden Avenue from Washington Street to Naper Boulevard.

§                     Cost: $100,000


Burying Overhead Lines

§                     DPU-E to work with ComEd to bury their existing overhead utility lines located along Ogden Avenue.  Based on a 2018 field visit with ComEd, it is projected that this work could be completed by ComEd in Fall 2018.  It will be the City’s responsibility to coordinate with any communication facilities, such as AT& T or Comcast, to bury the shared facilities also located on the existing overhead lines. 

§                     Cost: The City is proposing to apply its approximately $1.5 million in ComEd credits to complete this work.  Using a cost estimate that is currently being prepared by ComEd, the City will determine the extent of the work that can be done with the available ComEd credits, i.e., the existing credits may not cover burying all overhead lines along Ogden Avenue from Washington Street to Naper Boulevard.  There will be a cost to the City to have the AT&T and other utility lines buried, but an estimate is not available yet.



§                     Entryway signage, such as that proposed by Hitchcock Design Group, will be difficult to achieve absent an SSA given its significant construction and ongoing maintenance costs.  Accordingly, NDP worked with K. Peterson Associates Architects to develop an alternative signage design (see attached) that could be reasonably incorporated by property owners into new development projects as they are requested.   As proposed, property owners would draw from a standardized material list to design their sign - this will help to establish a consistent aesthetic along the corridor - however, each property owner will still have the flexibility to customize their sign to meet their individual business needs.  All such signage would be installed on private property.  At certain key locations, such as the northwest corner of Ogden Avenue and Naper Boulevard, the sign would also include a “Naperville” identifier to let users know that they are in the Naperville portion of the Ogden Avenue Corridor.  

§                     Cost: There is no direct cost to the City resulting from this proposal; however, staff may need to amend the Sign Code regulations to require compliance with this sign package for redevelopment projects occurring along Ogden Avenue. 

Staff is seeking feedback on the above options so that any work selected can be budgeted for and completed in the upcoming year.



To be determined.