Winnetka’s District-Specific Vision Statements
With all of the great feedback received to-date on Winnetka’s Downtown Master Plan, Vision Statements for each of the three business districts have been finalized.
The verbiage and concepts included in the succinct, one-paragraph statements below, were drawn directly from the comments and ideas shared via the project’s outreach components; i.e. the project website, idea chalkboards, public workshop, focus groups, steering committee meetings, Village Council workshop, and working groups.
The December 16, 2015 Steering Committee meeting and January 25, 2016 Open House and Steering Committee meeting provided the opportunity to present final drafts of the statements and work together, with both residents, stakeholders and members of the Steering Committee, to further discuss, refine and prioritize the fundamental elements unique to each district.
The Vision Statements that follow celebrate the desired look, feel, function and overall objectives for each district as we look ahead into the future. They represent what Winnetka’s business districts desire to become, not where they are today. Moving forward, these statements will serve as the foundation of the Winnetka Downtown Master Plan, helping guide and direct each district to realize their vision.
The Elm Street business district is the main hub and Downtown of Winnetka, serving as the Village’s community core. The district features a variety of multi-model transportation options including the Green Bay Trail and Elm Street Metra station, which provides great regional access via the Union Pacific North Metra Line. The area’s inviting mix of thriving restaurants, businesses, and community amenities attracts residents as well as visitors from across the North Shore. Those living in the district and housing nearby especially enjoy the wide sidewalks, benches, outdoor patios, and parks that make the Elm Street District a special place to stroll, shop, and dine. With upscale and historic architecture abundant in the area, the collective mix is complementary and respectful of the distinguished and historic character that is uniquely Winnetka.
The Hubbard Woods business district is happening, active, and multi-generational. The area’s complementary mix of specialty design stores, every day goods, coffee houses, and evening dining options draws nearby residents as well as those from surrounding communities. Hubbard Woods Park, located at the north end of the district, is a prominent focal point and gathering spot for families and nearby residents of all ages via its year-round festivals and programming. The look and feel of the district is similar to downtown Elm Street; the buildings display a mix of masonry, stone and historic influences. With sidewalks supported by bump-outs on the corners and select outdoor pocket patios, Hubbard Woods is a great spot in Winnetka to grab a coffee and window shop for unique goods or attend an event at the park followed by an evening sip and bite at a local brewpub.
The Indian Hill business district, located a short distance south of Downtown is the southern entrance into the Village. The area’s attractive streetscape features ornate lighting and interesting landscaping that provide a sense of arrival. The district serves as a major access point for students attending or those visiting New Trier High School, just a couple blocks due east. Indian Hill offers a mix of service, convenience, and professional uses that cater to a daytime population. Beyond its strong auto-oriented businesses, the district benefits from the Indian Hill Metra station and pedestrian amenities that enhance access and safety for the students and other users.