Get DuPage County Board candidate Dino Gavanes talking about economic development, and you might as well pour a cup of coffee and pull up a chair—this isn’t a quick conversation. That’s because economic development is one of Dino’s priorities and professional passions.
“DuPage County has had the best economic development history of any county in Illinois,” Dino says. “But it’s not enough to rest on our laurels. We DuPage County Board members want to continue that level of progress.”
Simply and broadly, economic development refers to the process by which a government improves the economic, political, and social wellbeing of its residents. In DuPage County, this means continuing to attract businesses and residents to the area. Within the last ten years, more and more young couples and families have established homes in DuPage County. In fact, families now account for close to 70% of the county’s household makeup. Over 30% of DuPage’s population is under age 18—with another 15% or so ages 65 and older.
“Like many communities, DuPage’s District 1 wants more taxable retail establishments. That base contributes to the local economy and to the revenue that supports residents’ wellbeing,” says Dino. “But we recognize that to really support good retail establishments, you have to have some community density. Density only comes with the construction of apartment, condo, and other multifamily establishments within walking distances of these suburbs’ downtowns. That’s happening here and there but picking up the pace by attracting new developments will contribute to the county’s economic development, which benefits everyone.”
Dino points to Itasca’s Hamilton Lakes as an example of an area development that has upped the community’s benefits. “Hamilton Lakes brings that kind of density,” Dino says. “It’s part of a larger vision for Itasca.”
Dino has hands-on experience in economic development work, having led the development of 127 N. Walnut in Itasca. This live-and-work space is one many in the community consider a cornerstone of the downtown area. Leading its development included working through issues of local stormwater management as well as technology and public works experience.
During 127 N. Walnut’s construction, Dino realized the Itasca Metra station—just across the street—would be a source of noise pollution for residents and office tenants in the building. “All during rush hour and then every hour during the day, there was noise from Metra trains and from freight trains coming through.” He and local residents worked on recommendations to minimize noise—valuable experience that translates well to another District 1, the management of O’Hare noise affecting the community.
Stewardship of DuPage County’s economic development offers present and future benefits to residents. “Walkable communities decrease reliance on automobile transportation. It can be difficult to get from place to place in the county, either via car or public transport,” Dino admits. “When you don’t have to get on a highway, you make the most of your time, and sometimes your health.”
Entertainment and household expenditure spending is slightly higher in DuPage County that the national average. It’s natural to consider that keeping that spending local, as much as possible, contributes to community vitality through economic development. “Shopping and dining local benefits local business owners and establishments,” Dino points out, “and keeps the majority of those dollars in the local economy.”
Keeping DuPage County thriving in a changing world is a key challenge for the entire County Board. Dino looks forward to contributing his knowledge and perspective as a resident and community leader to the County Board’s committees and leadership. “DuPage County has all the things that are required to develop into a highly advanced center for entrepreneurship.
I look forward to seeing DuPage County continue to meet the future and be a wonderful place to live and work,” says Dino.
District 1 includes Addison, Bensenville, Bloomingdale, Elmhurst, Itasca, Medinah, Roselle and Wood Dale in addition to portions of Lombard, Villa Park, Elk Grove, and Glendale Heights. “I ask for your vote on November 6 and look forward to serving you in the years to come.”
Local resident and experienced business leader Dino Gavanes is a Republican running for DuPage County Board to represent communities in District 1. To learn more about Dino and his campaign, and how you can become involved, visit his site at www.dinogavanes.com.
“DuPage County has all the things that are required to develop into a highly advanced center for entrepreneurship.