Part II of a happy ending involving the Lake County Forest Preserves. We had to relocate two historic cabins from our Ryerson Woods Forest Preserve. They had to be moved from the site of our state-of-the-art, net-zero environmental education building, now under construction, which will produce more energy than it consumes. We found buyers for both structures, who agreed to pay for the disassembly and shipping of the cabins (at no cost to taxpayers). The first cabin went to Mark Miller of Grayslake, who wanted a log cabin ever since he was a kid. The second was bought by a young architect for his family. What’s even cooler is that he hopes to relocate it on the site of one of only a dozen Frank Lloyd Wright homes in Lake County, a Usonian gem built in 1939 (pictured below). Thanks again to FP staff and to our local buyers for rescuing — and re-purposing — these cabins. They’ve found great homes!

County Commissioner John Wasik


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For several years Lake County Forest Preserves staff has been working behind the scenes to fulfill the needs of the education team–to have adequate classroom spaces. After years of planning and working to secure funding, we had the opportunity to design and now construct a new building that aims to achieve net-zero energy.

Net-zero energy use is accomplished by designing a highly insulated building that doesn’t require much energy to run and supplement it with an array of solar panels. The result will be a building that will produce as much energy as it uses each year.

The current classroom cabins were originally built for other purposes. Though we have used them for many years, the cabins have limited our ability to fully utilize our teaching skills and do not meet current Americans with Disability Act standards.

The new facility will provide a fully accessible space for our professional educators to utilize. The project is planned to be built in two phases. Current funding allows us to complete the first phase, which includes two classrooms, large bathrooms and a large covered porch. A second phase, which will add two additional classrooms, is planned but currently unfunded.

The complete project includes an asphalt trail that will be accessible all year round and general road improvements.