JOLIET – Joliet Junior College professor Andy Neill asked the school's board of trustees to decline a developer’s request to build a road across the campus’s natural areas and fen.
Neill was at Tuesday’s workshop meeting with several supporters who held up signs that said “Save our preserve” and “Save the fen.”
Neill and the college’s natural areas committee has opposed a part of Cullinan Properties’ proposal to build the County Farm Road extension that is for the company’s lifestyle mall project called Rock Run Crossings.
“We believe there are alternative routes to be taken,” he said.
Neill said he was speaking on behalf of other groups, such as the sustainability committee, the grounds advisory committee, the natural science department and many students and community members. Students on campus have gathered more than 550 signatures for a petition concerning the proposed road, he said.
He urged the board to continue to honor its 1998 resolution to grant continued protection and active stewardship of the natural areas.
“The fen has a stunning array of unique plant life like no other,” Neill said.
Cullinan Properties has said it is working with an engineering firm and the U.S. Corps of Army Engineers to study the location of the proposed road and how to mitigate its effect.
The college supports the proposed development and is waiting on the results of an Army Corps report before making any other recommendations, JJC spokeswoman Kelly Rohder has said.
After Neill spoke, none of the trustees made a comment except for board Chairman Robert Wunderlich, who thanked Neill for the information.