Plainfield, Elwood earn grants to improve natural areas

The grants from ComEd and Openlands are worth up to $10,000 each

The villages of Elwood and Plainfield both received grants via the annual ComEd Green Region Program to improve their natural spaces for residents.

Grantees each received a one-time grant of up to $10,000 to support and improve natural areas in northern Illinois communities, according to a news release.

“ComEd understands that it is critical for residents to have access to cleaner and more sustainable public spaces,” Melissa Washington, senior vice president of governmental and external affairs at ComEd, said in the release. “We also recognize the economic challenges faced by communities to maintain these natural spaces and make them available to the public.”

The village of Plainfield’s grant will go to fund the construction of a council ring and pollinator habitat at the Riverfront Park. The council ring will serve as a place for trail users to rest, relax and commune with nature. It will also serve as a gathering space for participants of pollinator education and other programs.

The village of Elwood’s grant will be used to expand and enhance the experience of residents and visitors using its children’s garden’s 1,000 square feet of plantings, 350 feet of walkway, wayfinding signs and other learning opportunities.

Elwood and Plainfield were two of 23 pubic agencies in the region which were awarded a Green Region Program grant this year.

Since the program’s inception in 2013, ComEd has awarded more than $1.5 million to municipalities across northern Illinois, according to the news release.

Alex Ortiz

Alex Ortiz

Alex Ortiz is a reporter for The Herald-News in Joliet. Originally from Romeoville, Ill., he joined The Herald-News in 2017 and mostly covers Will County government, politics, education and more. He earned his bachelor's degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a master's degree from Northwestern University.