Background

Starting in 2014, Foth teamed with SmithGroup to assist the Winnebago County Solid Waste Management Board (WCSWMB) with end use planning at both of their closed landfill sites. This work included an assessment of the existing conditions,identifying post-closure opportunities, finding uses matching the needs of the community and developing an end use master plan for the Snell Road Landfill site. The end-use plan includes a recreation area dedicated to long-term solid waste and county board member Ken Robl.

The Foth team provided permitting, design, and construction of the Ken Robl Conservation Park. The conservation park includes a walking trail around the on-site pond, a fishing pier and other pond access points, a parking lot and restroom facilities, and a bike trail to Freneau Avenue connecting to regional biking trails. Construction was completed in 2018 followed by a ribbon cutting ceremony and park dedication.

Approach

The Foth team:

-Designed the park to be located on sections of the landfill property outside the limits of waste to avoid exposure to potential hazards.

-Completed an evaluation of the on-site landscape flora and fauna and conducted research on regional park amenities.

-Conducted various field surveys and testing to verify that there were fish in the pond, that the depth of the pond was adequate to support fishing, and that the pond was safe for the public to access based on soil and water sampling completed.

-Prepared a general design and layout to the park that included northern and southern park sections and an “a la carte” list of park features which was used by the WCSWMB to help control costs and stay within the required budget.

Value Added
Over the years, the landfill property has become somewhat of a natural refuge for wildlife. The WCSWMB and the Foth team worked with the community stakeholders to establish the Ken Robl Park to also make the landfill property available to be enjoyed by the public.