Future of the Fox River: Burtons Bridge to Johnsburg

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With support from CMAP’s Local Technical Assistance (LTA) program, McHenry County Department of Planning and Development and City of McHenry Department of Economic Development are leading a collaborative effort to develop a Fox River Corridor Plan that will focus on:

  • Commerce within central business districts adjacent to the river's edge
  • Environment and natural resources (including water resources)
  • Multi-modal connections to/on the river
  • Public access and recreational use to/on the river and adjacent to business districts


We want to hear from you!

Public input is crucial to developing a plan that is driven by the needs and vision of the community. Opportunities to tell us what you think will be added to the site as we move through the planning process. Check the tabs below for the most recent engagement opportunities. You are also welcome to reach out to members of the project team listed under the 'Who's Listening' widget on the right.


With support from CMAP’s Local Technical Assistance (LTA) program, McHenry County Department of Planning and Development and City of McHenry Department of Economic Development are leading a collaborative effort to develop a Fox River Corridor Plan that will focus on:

  • Commerce within central business districts adjacent to the river's edge
  • Environment and natural resources (including water resources)
  • Multi-modal connections to/on the river
  • Public access and recreational use to/on the river and adjacent to business districts


We want to hear from you!

Public input is crucial to developing a plan that is driven by the needs and vision of the community. Opportunities to tell us what you think will be added to the site as we move through the planning process. Check the tabs below for the most recent engagement opportunities. You are also welcome to reach out to members of the project team listed under the 'Who's Listening' widget on the right.

  • Public Input Opportunity: Virtual Plan Review Open Houses

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    McHenry County and the City of McHenry, in partnership with CMAP, will host two virtual public open houses via Zoom for the draft Fox River Corridor Plan. Meetings will be held on Tuesday, November 2, 2021, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the afternoon and 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. in the evening.

    The plan presents a unified vision for the Fox River Corridor, spanning from Burtons Bridge to the south and Johnsburg at North Chapel Hill Road bridge to the north. It identifies strategies to spur economic investment, protect natural resources, enhance recreational amenities, improve bicycle and pedestrian access, and promote local and regional collaboration.

    Attend an open house for the opportunity to review and provide feedback on the draft plan. Local residents, business owners, community leaders, and other interested stakeholders are encouraged to participate!

    Plan Review Open House (afternoon option)

    Tuesday, November 2, 2021

    2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

    Click here to register for Zoom meeting


    Plan Review Open House (evening option)

    Tuesday, November 2, 2021

    7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

    Click here to register for Zoom meeting

    Download and share our meeting flyers under Related Documents (to the right of the home webpage) to help spread the word!

  • Visioning survey closing March 10!

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    Thank you for participating! This survey is now closed.

    The visioning survey for the Fox River Corridor will be closing on Wednesday, March 10!

    If you'd like to fill it out but haven't done so yet, now's your chance! You can take the survey by clicking on the 'Take A Survey' tab in the middle of this webpage or by using this link: https://engage.cmap.illinois.gov/fox-river-mchenry/survey_tools/visioning-survey.

    The survey will help us understand your vision for the Corridor and give you the opportunity to share your ideas about potential strategies and actions that the plan should consider.

    We look forward to your responses!

  • Plan Update: Existing Conditions Report

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    The Existing Conditions Report is now available!

    This Existing Conditions Report provides an overview of the current conditions within the Fox River Corridor planning study area. The report conveys key issues and opportunities that have emerged from the culmination of research, analysis, and public outreach activities. Developing an accurate understanding of the existing conditions impacting the study area is essential for creating an appropriate and effective plan that reflects the values of Holiday Hills, Johnsburg, McHenry, Prairie Grove, as well as unincorporated McHenry County.

    Building on the Corridor Profile, this report incorporates the expert knowledge and viewpoints of key stakeholders who live, work, and recreate in the Corridor. A full summary of the project’s outreach efforts can be found under Chapter 2, and detailed summaries of the key issues and opportunities that were identified can be found under Chapter 3. Chapter 4 summarizes the priority challenges and opportunities that emerged and flagged as topics that should be looked at further as the plan is developed.

    The report was presented to the Steering Committee in December 2020. Committee members gave feedback and the report was revised accordingly. Information compiled in this report, alongside input received through the visioning workshops, will be used to prepare a shared vision and craft recommendations that will be presented in the Fox River Corridor Plan.

  • Past engagement activities

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    Visioning Workshops

    McHenry County and the City of McHenry, in partnership with CMAP, held two virtual visioning workshops via Zoom for the Fox River Corridor Plan on Tuesday, January 19 and Thursday, January 21, 2021.

    Attendees participated in facilitated small group discussions to identify their visions and goals for economic development, river management, environmental protection, recreation, and transportation in the Corridor. The group reconvened to rank priority actions that will help develop a shared vision for the plan. Results from the visioning workshops will be incorporated during the plan development phase.


    Online surveys

    A public survey and interactive mapping exercise were open to the public between October 8 and November 27, 2020 and received over 110 responses. A summary of the survey results can be found under the Related Documents widget.


    Open houses

    McHenry County and the City of McHenry, in partnership with CMAP, held two virtual public open houses via Zoom for the Fox River Corridor Plan on Tuesday, November 10 and Thursday, November 12, 2020. Each open house gave members of the Fox River community an opportunity to discuss the strengths and challenges of the Fox River study area. After a brief overview of the project, participants broke out into small groups to discuss two of the following topics: Economic development, environmental quality, parks and recreation, and transportation.

    All input received during these group discussions will inform the Existing Conditions Report and help craft a comprehensive plan that includes strategies and actions for communities in the Fox River study area to realize their long-term vision for the corridor. Summaries of each meeting can be found under the Related Documents widget or using the links below:

  • Project background

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    The Fox River is one of the region's greatest public assets. Historically, it has played a major role in shaping the region’s landscape, both natural and developed, but today its full potential remains unrealized.

    The study area for this planning project spans five communities, conservation areas, nature preserves, and parks over a distance of eight miles from Burtons Bridge at Route 176 on the south end to North Chapel Hill Road in Johnsburg on the north end. Municipalities within the study area include McHenry, Johnsburg, Holiday Hills, and Prairie Grove.

    The project builds on the foundation of two previous Fox River Corridor plans—one for Villages of Algonquin and Carpentersville(External link) (completed in December 2015) and another for McHenry and Lake Counties(External link) (completed in September 2018). However, this project is ultimately a blank slate upon which priorities can emerge through the planning process.

    The map of the study area can also be found under the Related Documents widget on the right-hand side of the main page.




Page last updated: 08 November 2021, 20:36