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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The metamorphasis of Illinois Road

Since I'm up and down Illinois Road/SR 14 between I-69 and County Line Road too many times a week for too many years, I've watched this long flat stretch of road morph from lightly settled rural to urban in the making.
The pace has accelerated over the last year. Since the Pointe (why the "e"?) Inverness apartments were built, and the offices, and then Bandito's, and the widening project announced, the Illinois Road residents have read the writing on the wall --or, rather, the signs with "Major Moves" on them--and begun some major moves of their own.
Lots of houses for sale, and most of them mention "commercial potential." A few houses torn down or moved (two of them into MY neighborhood!). Construction on even more commercial areas, like near the Scott Road intersection (Cardinal Fitness? We'd heard rumors Wendys and Appleby's were going in there). Signs announcing retail opportunities. Much lot development with little else being accomplished (just why HAVE they been moving the dirt around on the corner of Hadley and Illinois for over a year?).
But for me, even sadder than seeing long-time homeowners putting those for-sale signs up (I mean, everybody moves eventually, anyway), is the homeowners taking preventative action--building substantive bunkers in their front yards, trying, I suspect vainly, to block out the already-increased traffic noise from Illinois, and in anticipation of the widening project that will bring the road into their living rooms next year.
I mean, some of these folks have put thousands of dollars in earth-moving and landscaping, erecting their personal Great Walls of Wayne. And others have got as far as having the earth dumped in their yards, there to languish under weeds and neglect.

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