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Rockton basemap for the web-01

Public Ideas

-Don’t screw up the downtown parking!

Response: Thanks for the comment. Parking is certainly critical to the success of downtown – as is pedestrian oriented spaces. The streetscape plan concepts under review provide alternative parallel and diagonal on street parking layouts. All scenarios depict solutions that balance parking by adding parking to Hawick Street and nearby off street lots. Project meeting materials and presentations can be found here:
Thanks again and please stay involved!

-I am against parallel parking in downtown area; however, if it must be, then perhaps the Village could find funds to help the shops beautify their back entrances, paved striped areas, plantings, well lit. etc.

Response: Thank you for taking the time to submit your comments. The Village does have a façade grant program that only a few businesses have taken advantage of – the Rubies ‘n Rust building to make historic repairs and repaint, Rockton Inn to put in outdoor seating, Dairyhaus to make historic repairs, Country Cottage to redo the siding and I believe window treatments, and Mack’s Lounge to remove the faux Wild West façade and return to original building as much as possible. Hopefully additional property owners will use it as well as it will reimburse them up to 50% of the total project cost with the maximum grant being $10,000 ($15,000 if a corner lot). So if someone invested $20,000 into their façade, the Village would reimburse them $10,000. Feel free to pass along this information to any of them if you think they might be interested – I’d love to get more people taking advantage of it. Thank you again for taking the time to express your thoughts.

-As a business owner, I would like to see a better solution to outdoor smoking. I sweep daily, cigarette ends and ash from my doorway and window into the gutter as I got fed up with depositing the trash in my own bin. (Didn’t smell good!) Now the gutters look gross, as they are never swept. Most of the pubs have back entrances which would serve better for smokers and the people walking by. Would not like to lose any more parking either, parallel parking might be ok for the north side so their sidewalk can be widened but not on the south side. (Rays needs good spaces out front)

Response: Hello and thank you for your comment. We agree that maintenance is critical to a successful streetscape and your comment has been shared with Village staff. Well managed on-street and off-street parking areas are important components for downtown businesses as well —  we understand and appreciate the input. Please stay tuned and thanks for participating!

-I think adding more flowers in the downtown area would be great! How about large hanging baskets that hang from light posts, like the huge beautiful flower baskets they have in downtown Rockford? That is one thing I notice right away when going over the bridges leading to downtown Rockford. It would be a great idea if people were interested in volunteering to plant flower beds. Maybe add their name on a tag at that garden to let people know who in the Village created the beautiful flower bed. I don’t know if the Village could give a certain dollar amount for anyone in the village to buy the flowers of their choice. Possibly have an acct. the village could set up with a nursery, so no money would have to exchange hands with the volunteer who wishes to purchase the flower for their garden in downtown Rockton. I suppose vouchers or something like that could also be used to purchase the flowers. Have it that the person has to give a receipt for the flowers they purchased.

Response: Thank you for the great thoughts. We agree that well maintained flowering plants do go a long way in supporting vibrant downtowns. We appreciate your taking the time to comment and please stay involved!

-Have stationary posts that line the street on both sides that can be used for seasonal decorating and contests. My idea is that families, organizations, businesses can participate in seasonal contests to decorate the post. For example in the fall the post contest can be decorated as a scarecrow. The post would cost $5.00 to decorate and a nice small sign would indicate who donated their talent. There could be a contest and the money raised from the post would be given to the winner to use in Rockton. Each season the town would look festive, lived in, fun, exciting and happy! There are so many organizations that might enjoy this from scouts, neighborhood families, sport programs, churches and more. It might also require a deposit so that they take it down at the end of the season in order to get their deposit back. I saw a scarecrow contest once in Genoa, Il where they lined the street with decorated scarecrows. It gave such a nice festive look to the town. I have always thought about trying to implement this but never did. Having permanent post would make it much more attractive and durable which makes it easier for those that want to participate

Response: Thank you for your great idea. Community based public art projects are always great ways to enrich public parks and green spaces. We will pass this along to the Village and please stay involved with the streetscape plan!

-I love the idea of a Hotel or something of that sort in Rockton. My idea is to have it built like an Inn or connecting Victorian looking homes set up like B&B. Keep it charming and unique so that travelers will come just for a quaint get away to check out our village

ResponseThank you for the great comment. The current streetscape assignment is focused on Downtown Rockton’s public streets and sidewalk areas. As such we are unable to make recommendations for private property developments. However your comment is noted and will be forwarded to the Village for potential future planning. Please stay involved and thanks again!

-I think one of the best resources to our community is the Race or spillway to the Paper-mill, what ever you call it. I have already started to make it better, by purchasing a park model cement picnic table to be place along the race in memory of my husband.

Why wouldn’t you dress up your entry way to town? It’s your doorway? that river bank is enjoyed by so many folks. If it had some cute light post and a few more picnic tables it could be the best spot in town. I hope to enjoy seeing people, have a picnic and fishing on my husband’s picnic table. It’s our way of giving back to the community. A lot of older folks fish there because of it’s easy access. I would like to challenge anyone to help it be a better more pictures place for all to enjoy. I think the town has enough memorial benches or put some then, on a nice sidewalk path.

-I’ve read the comments shared on the web page and wondered if a river walk may be an option in conjunction with a bike path.

-Turn the Sunoco property into a parking lot. It would relieve some of the on street parking clogging the residential areas.

Response: Thanks for the input and we couldn’t agree more that parking improvements, both on-street and off-street, would benefit the downtown and surrounding neighborhoods. As the streetscape plan is focused on public rights of way, we are unable to address the Sunoco property specifically. However we are working with the Village to identify improvements to municipal parking lots. Thanks again and please check back soon!

-PLEASE create a moratorium on a max number of bars/pubs, and restrict slot machines!

Response: Thanks for commenting and we appreciate the input. Please note that land use recommendations are not included as part of this study. Rather, the Downtown Streetscape Master Plan is focused on physical enhancements to the roadways, sidewalks and public spaces in Downtown Rockton. Please continue to stay involved and keep the comments coming!

-Ideas include:
1. Outdoor seating at Sams even though the area is tight. New metal overhang roof on front of Sams.
2. Metal Bike art to replace the high maintenance plants.
3. Bike racks that look like bikes to encourage recreational bike riders to visit Rockton
4. Small Bike rental place to generate money for Rockton City. Use Apple pay with QR codes so a bike rental store front is not needed. I have sources in China. Place these under roofs in dead space between buildings.
5. The candy store would fit perfect in a dead space between buildings. Wheaton has a ” hallway” candy shop that is a BIG draw for people. It is called The Little Popcorn Store.
6. Canoe rental place near the MIX.


-Connect the current bike path that goes through Settlers Park to a new bike path that travels along canal, over Rockton Rd, continues along canal and over Rockton Dam on Rock River connecting to J Norman Jensen Forest Preserve. The beautiful scenery and wildlife located along canal and over dam is a huge asset that Rockton has that it is not utilizing and very few residents even know about. It would create a boost to all downtown businesses with people traveling from all surrounding towns and villages along with create a need for new hotels and B&B’s. Making Rockton a go to bicycle destination will attract young and old from afar and all research points to increasing bicycle traffic has a positive effect on the local economy. (Two example of economic potential are Greenville, SC and San Antonio, TX)

Response: Thank you for the great comments. We agree that the River environment is a positive feature for Rockton’s downtown. Thanks again and please continue to check back in for future meetings and events!

-I really like the access to Rockton Sanctuary Spa and the other businesses the way it is now (only one street in AND out). I hope it will stay that way.

Response: We appreciate your taking the time to provide your input. We wanted to clarify that Hawick Street today is a temporary two-way access due to the IDOT construction project. Although we are not involved in the IDOT project, our understanding is that Hawick will be returned to its previous condition as a one way eastbound once the construction project is complete. However, as part of the Streetscape Master Plan assignment, we can certainly consider alternatives for Hawick and appreciate your thoughts. Please continue to stay involved!

-Get rid of rockton spirits useless parking lot. They don’t let anyone use it and its unfair to patrons.

Response: Thanks for visiting the website and taking the time to provide your comments. The Rockton Food & Spirits parking lot is privately owned. As such, the Village and Teska are not able to include it in the Village’s plan addressing Village- controlled streetscape. However, overall parking issues will be addressed as appropriate in the plan. Please continue to stay involved and thanks again!