The Bolingbrook Village Board on Tuesday called on residents to observe National Historic Preservation Week next week, though the city itself still has not reached the age of 50.
Though the village of 40,000 residents is far younger than surrounding suburbs— the farm fields that would become Bolingbrook were subdivided by developers in the early 1960s, and the village didn’t incorporate until 1965-- longtime Mayor Roger Claar observed that historic preservation is a priority.
“(History) is one of those things, those fleeting things,” said Claar, who has been mayor for 26 years. “If you don’t document it, you forget.”
Claar noted that Bolingbrook area residents first organized themselves before the village incorporated, united by opposition to a rate increase by the water utility serving the growing area. Claar is among the leaders of a plan by several suburban communities to take over water service that now is privately owned by Illinois American Water.
“So we still don’t like the water company, so history does repeat itself,” he said.
With members of the Bolingbrook Historic Preservation Commission standing beside him at the front of the board chambers, Claar listed preservation efforts including the purchase and removal of some of the original farm buildings by the village, and said that lean budgets have slowed efforts to make a full-fledged museum.
Board members voted unanimously to cancel their meeting scheduled for July 10 because of a lack of agenda items in need of consideration.