As I work in public relations and marketing, I’m often the recipient of statements about South Holland. Oftentimes, the feedback is received from a visitor commenting on their observations as they cross the border from a neighboring community into South Holland. More often than not, the messages are complimentary and remind me that people are paying attention to this community.
Well, as South Holland’s Vision 2022 strategic plan progresses, the village has a new structure that is most definitely grabbing the attention of residents, visitors and the traveling public. Vision 2022 10-year plan, which was initially introduced to the community in October 2012, seeks to advance the village’s economic development goals, enhance the community’s infrastructure and technology, further develop its role as a local and regional leader, and establish a more cohesive community, among other aspirations.
The undertakings of the plan are vast and ambitious, and led by a fully charged and enthusiastic administrative team. Now in it’s first year of implementation, the most notable and visible improvement is the installation of a new gateway sign. This is not the average “Welcome to South Holland” sign that motorists are accustomed to seeing as they enter the community from the north, south, east and west.
The village’s leadership team worked with a local company to create this monument-like structure installed at the border on U.S. 6 (162nd Street), west of State Street. Built on a concrete foundation, the design consists of three pillars, constructed using stone molded concrete blocks, each with an engraved stone highlighting the community’s motto of Faith Family Future.
South Holland’s redesigned insignia, etched in the middle pillar, is made of granite with a polished border to frame the logo. The caps were created to crown the pillars with seasonal plants and flowers, and decorative fencing is the innovative finishing element that connects the three sections.
The concept of the gateway structure is consistent with design elements of South Holland’s Town Center, creating a more aesthetic appearance for the town’s main thoroughfare.
South Holland village employee Steve Vinke worked closely with Village Administrator Jason Huisman, Public Works Director Jeff Hon, Planning, Development and Code Enforcement Director Frank Knittle, and company owner Brian Tennis to develop concepts for the structure. Weeks of planning have resulted in an incredible structure that brings the village’s Vision 2022 plan to life.
An additional gateway structure, on a smaller scale, will be installed at the 170th Street entrance, east of Paxton Avenue (bordering Lansing).