Selling Mixed Use in a Low Density Suburban Community

March 21, 2006

The Village of Burr Ridge is a low-density suburb characterized by a collection of traditional, late 20th century subdivisions. Burr Ridge is completing the planning process for a new Village Center which will be the primary anchor for the creation of "Downtown Burr Ridge." The Village Center is a mixed use project that includes 190,000 square feet of first floor retail with 33,000 square feet of office and 179 condominium units above the first floor retail — all situated on a pedestrian-oriented downtown street. The traditional development of Burr Ridge did not include any mixed use development and high-density residential was considered anything over 2 units per acre.

This Tuesdays at APA program focused on the planning process utilized by Burr Ridge in the adoption of a comprehensive plan amendment for the Village Center and, more specifically, on the education process used to discuss the concepts of mixed use density with village officials.

PowerPoint presentation (ppt)

PDF of PowerPoint presentation (pdf)


Robert B. Ahlberg, AICP

Robert B. Ahlberg, AICP, Vice President of TD&A, has almost 30 years of planning experience (over 22 of it in the public sector). He specializes in agency approval, zoning, land use and municipal planning and presently serves as the Village Planner for Wonder Lake, Illinois and has prepared development reviews for many Illinois municipalities including Huntley, Wonder Lake, Hinsdale, Carpentersville and Burr Ridge, Illinois.  He served as the principal author of MAP 2020, the Master Action Plan 2020 for Johnson County, Kansas (an NRPA gold medal agency). Mr. Ahlberg also recently completed updates to the Brookfield and Bloomington Illinois Open Space Master Plans and was the primary author of the Lake Zurich Open Space Master Plan published in 2004. Mr. Ahlberg previously worked for the Village of Glenview, Illinois as the Village Planner, the City of Evanston, Illinois as Zoning Planner and the Village of Flossmoor, Illinois as Zoning Administrator/Planner. In these capacities he has overseen the preparation of numerous development reviews, development regulations, plans and was involved in portions of the planning and development regulation of the former Glenview Naval Air Station, now known as "The Glen." He has both bachelors and masters planning degrees from the University of Illinois and was active as an officer in the Illinois Chapter of the American Planning Association from 1997 to 2004, serving as Treasurer and Vice President.  As Chapter Vice President, he oversaw its statewide awards program from 2001 to 2004 and in late 2005, served as a juror for the 2006 APA National Awards Program.


Douglas Pollock, AICP

Douglas Pollock, AICP, has been the Community Development Director for the Village of Burr Ridge since 1995. He previously worked as a Planner for the Village of Lombard and the City of Indianapolis. He has a Master's in Community Planning from the University of Cincinnati and a Bachelor of Science in Urban Affairs from the University of Evansville. His experience as a planner has focused on the areas of organizational management, land use planning, and urban design.