About Oak Grove

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Lake County

Lake County is located in the far northeastern portion of Illinois. It is approximately 470 square miles in size and its boundaries extend north to the Wisconsin border. It incorporates 24 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline to the east, extends south to Lake Cook Road and has a western boundary that loosely extends to State Route 12. The region was created by an Act of the State Legislature in March 1839. It was a prairie and home to its native Pottawatomie Indians. The physical makeup of Lake County includes farmland to the west and industrial urban and suburban areas in the eastern section. According to the 1996 census the population was 586,781. In the last decade, however, the population of the county has risen dramatically.

Village of Green Oaks

The Village of Green Oaks is located in the east central section of Lake County, Illinois. It is one of 52 incorporated villages and cities in Lake County and encompasses 12 square miles. Green Oaks borders Rondout to the south, Waukegan to the north and east, along with North Chicago and Knollwood, and Libertyville to the west. The population in 1996 was 2,385.In 1960 the Village of Oak Grove changed its name to the Village of Green Oaks with a population of about 150 residents. The foundation of the village at its inception was as a municipal barrier to intense urban and industrial expansion. The majority of the homes utilize the open space and conservation buffers and are situated on one to five acre lots. In the last four years, the population of the village has increased notably with the building of new housing developments in many of the open areas. Major access to and within the community includes Interstate 94, Illinois Route 176, Illinois Route 137, St. Mary's Road, and O'Plaine Road. The distance to the Chicago Loop is 39 miles and the distance to two major airports, Mitchell Field in Milwaukee and O'Hare in Chicago is between 29 and 41 miles. Many government services include services provided by Libertyville Township and the village of Libertyville. The Libertyville Township Fire Protection District provides fire services and the Lake County Sheriff's Department provides police protection. Residents of the community utilize the library services of Cook Memorial Library in Libertyville. The earliest settlement east of the Des Plaines River was in the 1840's and was known as Oak Grove. The forerunners, many Irish immigrants, encountered the dense forest areas, clay soil and undrained swamps as obstacles to pioneer farming in the area. The roads were little more than Indian trails and paths paralleling the river. One of the first settlers was Thomas Madden, who bought some land three miles east of the river in 1844. His house stood near the Milwaukee Road railroad tracks near Buckley Road. At that time it was called Madden Road and was nothing more than a footpath. Since then the population of Green Oaks has increased by 1000% from 1960 to 1985.

Village of Green Oaks Attributes and Challenges

The village recognizes its many attributes and faces several significant challenges. Green Oaks offers the residents of the village the opportunity to live in an open countryside environment and maintain a high quality of life. To maintain this attribute, the objective of the Planning Commission is to control growth while preserving the village character. The physical geography of the area is flat and is described as a natural wetland. Flooding in various subdivisions is a challenge the village has acknowledged. While, the wetland is a valuable natural feature of the area, natural flood control is another focus for the village. Preservation of the wetlands, open space, and conservation buffers are considered to be significant attributes along with the close proximity of the Lake County Forest Preserve. Roadway access and public transportation has become a problem due to the rapid growth of the village, along with access to public sewer and city water. An alternative mode of transportation, such as commuter rail service, is an issue that must be considered.

Oak Grove School District 68

Oak Grove School was originally known as Madden School. In 1850, early settler, John Madden, donated land on St. Mary's Road for the school building. During the 1880's, there were two four-month terms to accommodate the planting, cultivation, and harvest of the surrounding farmland. Three buildings occupied this land until 1918, when the Directors decided that a larger school was necessary. The new school was built at the corner of Buckley Road and O'Plaine Road and renamed Oak Grove School. In 1956, the district purchased land one half mile south of Buckley Road at the end of O'Plaine Road. The Oak Grove building at the corner of Buckley Road housed kindergarten and first grade for several years. The building was purchased by United Way of Lake County in 1988. As the community grew, so did the student population and additions were built in 1960, 1964, 1970, 1977, 1990 and 1997. Student enrollment increased from 132 students in 1960 to an enrollment of 1150 in the Fall of 2006.  The 2017-18 school year started with over 900 students. Oak Grove School is a Kindergarten through 8th grade educational institution. All grades are housed in the same building with certain wings designated as specific grade level areas.

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