Wesley Street, Hale Street and Cross Street in downtown Wheaton are open for all to use, featuring numerous improvements just in time for holiday shopping and dining. The City of Wheaton recently completed Phase 2 of its extensive Downtown Streetscape Project, which is improving infrastructure both underground and aboveground.
Also, during the holiday shopping season, the City has opened the Wheaton Place Parking Garage for free customer parking. Located at Wesley Street and Wheaton Avenue (you can also enter from Front Street), this convenient option is available for customers to enjoy downtown shopping and dining.
“We are thrilled that residents, businesses and visitors can enjoy the wider sidewalks, upgraded streetlights, gathering spaces, holiday planters and so much more,” said Wheaton Mayor Phil Suess. “As many people who attended last week’s Living Wheaton Christmas Parade saw, the downtown is being transformed into an even more inviting, pedestrian-friendly place for all to enjoy.”
While many of the upgrades are easy to see – such as significantly wider sidewalks, shorter crosswalks, reconfigured parking and traffic engineering, energy-efficient lighting, benches, decorative planters and permeable pavers – even more extensive work lies beneath the surface.
“Crews were digging up to 14 feet underground to replace water main and sewer structures that are 90 years old or more,” said Assistant City Manager John Duguay. “While the above-ground amenities are exciting to see, much of this project centers around our need to make important infrastructure improvements for the downtown.”
Phase 2 improvements included Hale Street from Willow Avenue to Union Avenue; Wesley Street from Cross to Wheaton Avenue; and Cross Street from Front Street to Wesley Street.
Phase 3 work in 2020 will focus on Main Street from Illinois Street to Wesley Street, adding wider sidewalks, improving infrastructure and providing similar amenities to those added in Phase 1 and Phase 2.
“As this project is coming together, we’ve already had a number of new businesses coming into Wheaton because they want to be a part of our downtown,” said Mayor Suess. “As a resident and as someone who has been part of this project from the beginning, it is exciting to see this project reach another important milestone.”
For more information about this project, visit www.wheaton.il.us/downtownstreetscape.