The Chicago suburbs are an ever-expanding encroachment on farmland in northeast Illinois. Some of the richest soil in the world is in the ground of the Lake Michigan basin from the lake shore to the Fox River and beyond. Sometimes there is a clash between strictly residential suburbanites and those who work closely with their land to earn and save money.
In Arlington Heights, you can’t raise livestock — no chickens, no pigs, no cows, but you can grow vegetables. Some homesteaders wanted the right to raise hens in Arlington Heights a few years ago, but their efforts were beaten down by a ruling of the Village Board. And there aren’t any farms in Arlington Heights anymore — not even a nursery. A similar battle regarding raising chickens occurred about the same time in Palatine.
In Arlington Heights in the late 1950’s there were plenty of farms just north of Euclid Avenue, and that was about as far north as any neighborhoods were built. By the late 1960s, there weren’t many farms south of Palatine Road, and neighborhood homes were rapidly expanding north toward Buffalo Grove. Farms with long driveways extended from Arlington Heights Road west to farmhouses almost as far Rand Road or to locations where Kennicott Avenue is now located. Their limestone driveways were almost as long as Hintz Road’s length from Arlington Heights Road to Rand Road.
Meanwhile the Village of Buffalo Grove was expanding south toward Arlington Heights. One of the last remaining farms in the area was located just north of Old Arlington Heights Road and Buffalo Grove Road. That farmland disappeared when Buffalo Grove High School was built in 1973.
Today in 2017, asphalt gardens of strip malls are dying. Amazon.com, king of innovation and retail mastery, is now a strip mall-killing and shopping mall-killing machine. What started as the “World’s Largest Bookstore” in the late 1990s is now the world’s largest store, offering 250 million products, including about 52 million books.
By 2013, Amazon’s $67 billion plus sales were almost double the next three contenders of Apple, Staples and Walmart. Amazon’s $67 billion sales were more than double than the bottom six contenders in the top ten club — Sears, Liberty Interactive, Netflix, Macy’s, Office Depot, and Dell.
How long will it be, before the rich soil of Illinois starts coughing up these dead malls and strip malls, and they return to empty lots?
While retailers battle on a large scale over markets, property owners battle over property rights in neighborhood on the borders of sprawling suburbia. Currently you have to drive a good distance north, northwest or west to find the engagement of suburbia with farmland. But the sprawl continues, and at the front line it often involves one party claiming the other party’s property isn’t being kept up properly.
I normally don’t comment but this is aggravating me.. I was recently over at the Kowalczyk’s house and they shared some perennial flowers with me and I didn’t smell a thing for so called “excessive amounts of odor” it doesn’t smell at all and the house is very well kept and clean. This farm has been here a long time and shame on you people who live in this subdivision who are picking on these people… move back to naperville if that’s the kind of life you want. Treat people the way you want to be treated.
— Pat Hill
Check more reactions and comments in the Facebook post by the Daily Herald …
In Kane County at the northwest corner of Route 47 and Willow Creek Drive there is an old blue farmhouse that was built in the late 1800s. Much of that area is still considered farm country. There’s Sugar Grove Pumpkin Farm & Produce to the east, and Kaneville Tree Farms to the west. The neighborhood is surrounded by large patches of farmland and commercial growers. As Elburn (pop. 2,756) sprawls like Chicago proximal northwest suburbs sprawled in the 1950s and 1960s, its city limits move closer to the old blue farmhouse, but the property is unincorporated.
About 40 luxury homes, have been built to form a new isolated neighborhood on Willow Creek Drive, Creekside Court, Pine Row Court, and Willow Creek Court. Unfortunately, the smell of livestock on the property and the appearance of the property of the old blue farmhouse is being met with opposition of the residents of the newly formed neighborhood.
The Kane County Board became involved after several responses by the Kane County Sheriff regarding neighbor disputes. The Daily Herald reports neighbors are upset about the smell of the livestock, and that the Kane County Sheriff investigated Michael Kowalczyk’s property after gunshots were heard on the property. Two goats were killed for food, but that prompted the Kane County Development Committee to vote to rid the property of all livestock. No the vote goes to the full county board.
See the Daily Herald for more info …
Get updates from The Cardinal ALL NEWS FEEDS on Facebook. Just ‘LIKE’ the ‘Arlington Cardinal Page (become a fan of our page). The updates cover all posts and sub-category posts from The Cardinal — Arlingtoncardinal.com. You can also limit feeds to specific categories. See all of The Cardinal Facebook fan pages at Arlingtoncardinal.com/about/facebook …
Help fund The Cardinal Arlingtoncardinal.com/sponsor