ROCK ISLAND COUNTY, Ill. — With the help of a $1 million Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation grant, the Rock Island County Forest Preserve is converting almost 180 acres of land in East Moline near Interstate 80 and Illinois 92 into a public-use park.
"Our arborists and superintendents will be devising a plan (for the land), and that starts with getting a good read on what's there," Rock Island County Board Member and County Forest Preserve President Kai Swanson said. "They're going to spend some time looking at what's there, what makes the best sense for conservation and restoration, but also what makes the best sense for learning and recreation."
For now, the forest preserve is challenging the community to come up with a name for its newest park that reflects the Quad Cities region's rich history and optimism for the future.
The land marks the forest preserve's seventh park and has the potential of preserving endangered species like the Rusty Patched Bumblebee, America Bumblebee, Indiana Bat and Northern Long-eared Bat. The park will also offer the public another local venue to enjoy the outdoors through hiking, biking, horseback riding, camping and picnicking.
Have a name in mind for the county's newest park? Submit your ideas through the end of March via email to email@example.com or via mail to "New Park" at 19406 Loud Thunder Road, Illinois City, IL 61259.
The name for the new park will be announced later this year, Swanson said.