Open Lands

Orland Park Open Lands CommissionThe Draw of Open Spaces
One of the many reasons people choose Orland Park as the place they want to live is the parks, forest preserves, and open spaces. In an attempt to preserve some of these open spaces, the Village formed the Open Lands Fund in November 1995, with the simple goal of improving the quality of life in Orland Park by increasing the amount of open space for present and future generations. Since that time, over 300 acres of land have been permanently protected.

Open Lands' objectives are to acquire land and use other real estate techniques to:
  • Preserve critical and sensitive environmental areas.
  • Provide comprehensive linkage between open spaces.
  • Add to existing holdings for specific advantages.
  • Provide wildlife habitat.
  • Provide additional land in already developed areas.
  • Improve aesthetic benefits.

A Nature Center is coming to Orland Park!
Open Lands’ latest project is a new Nature Center to serve area residents! Located on LaGrange Road, just north of the Metra tracks, the site improvements are nearing completion, and include a flexible outdoor gathering space with an amphitheater that will accommodate a variety of uses and group sizes, a new permeable paver parking lot and drive aisle that transverses the site, and a looped trail system that meanders around the site and includes seating areas and native plant and animal community restoration examples. North of the drive aisle, a boardwalk will extend over the existing detention area to a bird watching station and wetland overlook. The Gianakas family recently donated the 24 acre parcel to the north of the Nature Center site to the Village. The wetlands on that site will serve not only as a focal point for the Nature Center, but also as a great opportunity for the preservation and restoration of an area known for its bird populations.

How can you help preserve open space?
This year, the community is initiating a fund-raising campaign for this exciting project. We are asking for your support for development of the Orland Park Nature Center. For more details, please contact the Village’s Development Services Department (708-403-5300). Your investment in Orland Park’s Nature Center will impact our community for generations to come! (The Open Lands Corporation is a 501(c)(3))

  • Make a tax-deductible financial contribution to the Open Lands of Orland Park Fund.
  • If you own property and wish to continue ownership, consider a nature preserve deduction, long-term lease, conservation easements, or covenants. These may result in reduced property taxes.
  • If you own property and wish to transfer the deed, consider an outright donation, donation by devise, life estate, bargain sale, or installment sale.
  • Write letters to the Cook County Forest Preserve Board of Commissioners at: Chairman, Cook County Board, 118 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60602. Tell them that you want land acquisition to be made a top priority as their predecessors did.
  • You can improve the natural quality of your own property by planting native prairie plants and trees.