The Prowler

Net-Zero facility opens

Preston Zbroszczyk, Sports Editor

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The Village of Plainfield started the year unveiling a new state of the art recreation center.  The newly opened Prairie Activity and Recreation Center (PARC) was officially opened to the public on Jan 1.

“It is a big benefit for the entire community because of the new fitness center along with the league basketball games that will be played here,” Director of Facilities Andy Dunfree said.

Ground breaking didn’t start for the construction of the facility until October 2017 after a voter’s referendum passed it in 2016.

“[The] November 2016 election community meeting voter’s referendum passed with 62% approval,” Executive Director Carlo Capalbo said.  “[We are] using the rest of bulk proceeds to light up baseball parks and build parks.”

The cost for the construction was offset by the Clean Energy Foundation which defrayed a $ 1 million grant for the facility because it is Net-Zero, the latest solar panel energy efficiency. It is also the first Net-Zero facility built in Illinois.

“The Architect and Whitten Company designed the energy efficient building through solar panels which certified a passive house to make it Net-Zero,” Capablo said.

The Net-Zero building is a unique energy saving system. It combines energy efficiency and renewable energy to consume only as much energy as can be produced onsite through renewable sources.

“It drains from the grid not using extra electricity providing self-sustaining and providing extra grid,” Capablo said.

The newly opened  PARC is located at Bott Community Park on W. Renwick Rd, Plainfield. Free classes are being offered during Free Fitness Week Feb. 4-11.

“I’m glad a facility like this was built for the entire community to use it,” Plainfield resident Devon Randulph said.

The recreation center has made its fitness center, basketball courts, gym, workout room and the upstairs full track available to its members.

“I think it’s a great addition for the community,” Plainfield resident Freddie Guerrero said. “[It] brings people from all kinds of communities because they see another opportunity as a benefit for all of us.”

The Great Adventure preschool is a new program which is also housed at PARC and is meant to meet children’s emotional, social and creative needs.

“My kids enjoy it,” Guerrero said. “They come back home happier, thinking differently and meeting new friends.”

The Plainfield Park District has long been a place for community residents to  gather.

“It’s a great environment and has so much to do,” Plainfield resident Julie Ruebien said. “It was long overdue for a facility like this.”


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The student news site of Plainfield North High School
Net-Zero facility opens