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Conservation and Native Landscaping Awards

The Conservation and Native Landscaping Awards recognized projects that demonstrated exemplary use of native landscaping and conservation design.

These practices create and protect habitat for a variety of native plant and animal species and result in important benefits for both people and nature. 

Previously awarded sites are listed below. The application process is closed as we are transitioning to the Force of Nature Awards. Please contact us with questions about the program.




2014 Awards

Bambrick Park, Hines Emerald Dragonfly Preservation Area, Romeoville, IL, Lemont Park District. Project partner: Pizzo & Associates.

Bartel Grasslands Restoration, Matteson, IL, Forest Preserves of Cook County. Project partners: Audubon - Chicago Region, Openlands, Thorn Creek Audubon Society, and the US Army Corps of Engineers.

Brook Forest Subdivision, Oak Brook, IL, Brook Forest Community Association. Project partner: Pizzo & Associates.

Eugene Field Park Section 206 Ecosystem Restoration, Chicago, IL, Chicago Park District. Project partner: US Army Corps of Engineers.

Glen Flora Ravine Restoration at Bowen Park, Waukegan, IL, Waukegan Park District. Project partner: Waukegan Harbor Citizens Advisory Group.

Grand Army of the Republic and Thomas Jefferson Woods, Thatcher Woods Complex, River Forest, IL, Forest Preserves of Cook County. Project partner: Thatcher Woods Savanna Restoration Project.

Grand Dominion Natural Areas, Mundelein, IL, Grand Dominion by Del Webb Community. Project partner: Christopher B. Burke Engineering.

Heritage Woodland Sanctuary & Community Center, Lemont, IL, Lemont Township. Project partner: Pizzo & Associates.

McDowell Grove Forest Preserve / West Branch DuPage River Restoration, Napervill, IL, DuPage County Stormwater Management and Forest Preserve District of DuPage County.

Native Plant Garden, Valparaiso, IN, Taltree Arboretum & Gardens.

Outdoor Classroom, Elmhurst, IL, Elmhurst District 205 - Hawthorne Elementary School. Project partners: Erwin Steinhebel & Sons, Inc., Good-Natured Landscapes LLC.

Pingree Grove, Village of Pingree Grove, IL, Forest Preserve District of Kane County.

Somme Nature Preserve Restoration, Northbrook, IL, Forest Preserves of Cook County.

Honorable Mentions

Lincoln Park Peace Garden, Chicago, IL, Chicago Park District.

John L. Sipley Elementary School Green Campus Initiative, Woodridge, IL. Woodridge School District 68.


2013 Awards

Advocate Sherman Hospital Campus, Advocate Sherman Hospital
. Project partners: Damguard Landscaping, Hitchcock Design Group, Thornapple Landscapes. 

Bobolink Meadow, Chicago Park District. Project partners: Pizzo & Associates, Ltd. 

Corporate Campus Landscape, Ball Horticultural Company
. Project partners: Conservation Land Stewardship, WRD Environmental. 

Edgebrook Woods Demonstration Site, Forest Preserves of Cook County. Project partners: Friends of the Chicago River

John Janega Memorial Park, Lindenhurst Park District. Project partners: Integrated Lakes Management, Inc.

Lake Forest Country Day School, Lake Forest Country Day School Preserve. Project partners: Hey and Associates, Inc., Kinnucan Tree Services, Native Restoration Services, Rogers Nursery.

North Lake Shoreline Restoration Program
, Chicago Botanic Garden
. Project partners: Living Habitats, Native Landscape Contractors, LLC, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – Chicago District. 

McDonald Farm Conservation Demonstration Projects, The Conservation Foundation. 
Project partners: Aquascape, Inc., Cardno JFNew, Pizzo & Associates, Ltd.

Reach 1 River Naturalization, Village of Glenview. Project partners: Applied Ecological Services, Hey and Associates, Inc., Lake County Grading.

South Patrol Road Wetland Restoration, Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie, USDA ForestService . Project partners: Openlands, The Wetlands Initiative. 

Thatcher Woods Savanna Restoration Project, Forest Preserves of Cook County
. Project partners: Thatcher Woods Savanna Restoration Project. 

Theodore Stone Preserve, Forest Preserves of Cook County. 
Project partners: Des Plaines River Valley Restoration Project. 


2012 Awards

Gaslight Park Bird and Butterfly Sanctuary, Algonquin, IL. Project partner: Village of Algonquin.

Nature Trails, Chicago, IL. Project partner: Chicago Academy of Sciences and its Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

Henry Palmisano Park, Chicago, IL. Project partner: Chicago Park District.

Sherman Park Lagoon Restoration, Chicago, IL. Project partner: Chicago Park District. 

Bergman Slough Preserve, Palos Park, IL. Project partner: Forest Preserve District of Cook County.

McMahon Woods and Fen Nature Preserve, Willow Springs, IL. Project partner: Forest Preserve District of Cook County.

Iroquois Sands Land and Water Reserve, Beaverville Township, IL. Project manager: Friends of the Kankakee.

Heatherwood Estates Pond, Schaumburg, IL. Project parnter: Heatherwood Estates Homeowners Association.

Red Mill Great Lakes Ecosystem Restoration, LaPorte, IL. Project partner: LaPorte County Parks.

Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago, IL. Project partner: Lincoln Park Zoo.

Loyola Academy Wetland Restoration, Glenview, IL. Project partner: Loyola Academy.

Naper Settlement, Stormwater Management Improvements, Naperville, IL. Project partner: City of Naperville. 

Niles Community Rain Garden and Prairie Plant Project, Niles, IL. Project partner: Village of Niles.

Olde Schaumburg Centre Parking Lot, Schaumburg, IL. Project partner: Village of Schaumburg.

2012 Certificate of Merit: Green LUNGS 5th Avenue Garden, Chicago, IL. Project partner: Empowerment through Education and Exposure.


2011 Awards

The Dixie Briggs Fromm Nature Preserve and Natural Area. Project partner: Dundee Township. 

Flint Creek Savanna Preserve, Barrington, IL. Project partner: Citizens for Conservation.

Hooper Branch Savanna Nature Preserve, Iroquois County, IL. Project partner: Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

Lake Barrington Village Hall Detention Basin Retrofit. Project partner: Village of Lake Barrington.

Linden Estates, Aurora, IL. Project partner: Citizens for Conservation.

Lyman Woods Streambank Stabilization Project. Project partner: Downers Grove Park District.

PrairieWalk Pond. Project partner: Village of Lisle. 

Residential Native Eco-Gardens & Micro-Habitat Project, Schaumburg, IL. Project partner: Town Square Condominium Association.

Salt Creek Woods Nature Preserve Restoration Project, Westchester, IL. Project partner: Forest Preserve District of Cook County.

Sanctuary Pond - A Refuge for Threatened & Endangered Fish Species, Grayslake, IL. Project partner: Prairie Crossing Homeowners Association.

Seavey Streambank Restoration Improvements at Hazeltime Road. Project partner: Village of Vernon Hills.

Spring Bluff Nature Preserve, Winthrop Harbor, IL. Project partner: Lake County Forest Preserves.

Superior Street Prairie, Calumet City, IL. Project partner: ComEd.

2011 Certificate of Merit Recipient: Franklin Academy Middle School Native Landscaping Project, School City of East Chicago. Project partners: BP America - Whiting Refinery, Wildlife Habitat Council. 


2010 Awards 

Baker's Lake Savanna, Barrington, Illinois. Project partners:Citizens for Conservation, the Village of Barrington.

Calvary Church Restoration Prairies, Naperville, Illinois. Project Partners: Prairie Sun Consultants and Pizzo and Associates, Ltd.

Carillon North Buffer Enhancement, Grayslake, Illinois. Project partners: Carillon North Homeowners Association, Integrated Lakes Management.

Carrington Reserve Natural Area, West Dundee, Illinois. Project partners: Applied Ecological Services, Inc.

Conservancy at Estates at Inverness Ridge, Inverness, Illinois. Tallgrass Restoration, LLC.  

Crow Island Woods Woodland Restoration, Winnetka, Illinois. Project partners: Winnetka Park District, Pizzo and Associates, Ltd.

Grand Haven Prairie, Romeoville, Illinois. Project partners: Pizzo and Associates, Ltd. 

Island Prairie Park Nature Center, Frankfort, Illinois.  

Midwestern University Woodland and Wetland Restoration Project, Downers Grove, Illinois. Project partners: Midwestern University, Christopher B. Burke Engineering, Ltd., Mackie Consultants and Kracower & Associates.

Naturalized Storm Water Management Facilities, Montgomery, Illinois. Project partners: Village of Montgomery, Pizzo and Associates, Ltd.

Oakton Community College Campus Restoration, Des Plaines, Illinois. Project partners: Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Army Corps of Engineers, Pizzo and Associates, Ltd.

Orland Grassland Restoration Project, Orland Park, IL. 

Reed-Turner Woodland Sedge Meadow Restoration, Long Grove, Illinois. Project partners: Illinois Nature Preserves Commission, Steward Barbara Reed Turner , the Reed-Turner Woodland Stewards and Trust Fund, Indian Creek Watershed Project, the Long Grove Park District.

Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel Convention Center, Schaumburg, Illinois. 

Whippoorwill Farm Preserve, A Mettawa Gateway, Mettawa, Illinois. Project Partners: Village of Mettawa, Mettewa Open Lands Association (MOLA), Tallgrass Restoration, Integrated Lakes Management, DePaul University and Stephen Christy, HSBC- North America, MOLA members, Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and Hamilton Partners.

Yellowstone Natural Area, Algonquin, Illinois.


Certificates of Merit: Amhurst Lake Business Park Ponds- Amhurst Lake Business Park Owners Association; St. Charles Commons- Pizzo and Associates, Ltd.; Jackson Creek Native Prairie- Frankfort Park District; Terada Park Native Landscaping Project- Schaumburg Park District, Schaumburg High School District 211 and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.


2009 Awards 

Bridgeview Court Natural Area, Bridgeview, IL. Project partners: US EPA, Village of Bridgeview, Bridgeview Park District, Tallgrass Restoration, LLC, Pizzo and Associates, Ltd.

Brookfield Oak Savanna at Kiwanis Park, Brookfield, IL. Project partners: Village of Brookfield, Chicago Wilderness, Applied Ecological Services, Inc. 

Butler Lake Ecosystem Restoration, Libertyville, IL. 

Deer Hills and Deer Woods, Landmark Development, Inc., Belvidere, IL. Project partners: Boone County Conservation District, Pizzo and Associates, Ltd. 

Gompers Park Wetland Restoration, Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL. Project partner: Chicago Park District.  

Grigsby Prairie, Barrington Hills, IL. 

Manhattan Creek Stream Restoration Project, Manhattan, IL. Project partners: Village of Manhattan, The Conservation Foundation, V3 Companies, Ltd., Manhattan Park District, Centex Homes, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Mill Creek Community Park, Geneva, IL. Project partners: Geneva Park District, Pizzo and Associates. Ltd.

Prairie Village Restoration Project, Fairhaven Retirement Community, Whitewater, WI. Project partners: Tallgrass Restoration, LLC. 

Rainbow Beach and Park, Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL. 

Springbrook Prairie Forest Preserve Stream Restoration, Forest Preserve District of DuPage County, Naperville, IL. Project partners: Forest Preserve District of DuPage County, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA), Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA), Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), DuPage County Department of Development and Planning, Christopher B. Burke Engineering, The Conservation Foundation.

Thorn Creek Conservancy Industrial Park, Chicago Heights, IL. Project partners: River Basin Initiative, Land Resource Management Group (LRMG).

Windham Lakes Southwest, Lily Cache Slough, Panattoni Development Company, LLC., Romeoville, IL. Project partner: V3 Companies, Ltd.

Wolf Lake Ecosystem Restoration Project, Hammond, IN. Project partners: Chicago District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. 

Certificates of Merit: Coyote Run Golf Course; Mishawaka Riverwalk; Holy Spirit Catholic Church; Park Ridge Pointe Homeowners Association; Lakelands Club Homeowners Association; Tallgrass Restoration Offices Prairie Garden. 


2008 Awards 

Argonne National Laboratory, Wetland Restoration.

Ball Horticultural Corporate Campus, West Chicago, IL.

Crossings at Wolf Creek Community, Centex Homes, Plainfield, IL. 

Chicago Premium Outlets, Stream Corridor, Wetland, Prairie Restoration. Project partners: City of Aurora, Kane County Environmental Management Department. 

College of DuPage, Roadway, Parking Lot and Associated Landscape Improvements. 

Crossings at Wolf Creek Community, Centex Homes, Plainfield, IL.

Keson Industries Corporate Campus, Aurora, IL.

Danada Woods Townhome Assoc., Naperville, IL.

Elgin Prairie, Nicor, Elgin, IL. 

Erickson Retirement Communities, Monarch Landing.

Geneva Middle School North, Geneva School District, Geneva, IL. 

Highland Lakes Homeowners Assoc., Highland Park, IL. 

Nantucket Cove Homeowners Assoc.  Schaumburg, IL. 

Native landscaping at the Smart Home:  Green + Wired Exhibit, Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, IL. Project partners: Jacobs/Ryan Associates, Christy Webber Landscapes, Openlands Native Habitats Program, a Clean Air Counts partner, Master Gardeners, Chicago Department of the Enviroment’s Greencorps. 

Nepese Marsh Restoration, Fermilab.

Ryerson Woods Welcome Center, Lake County Forest Preserves.

Town of Linn Nature Park, Town of Linn, WI

Village of Algonquin, IL, Lake Drive South Naturalized Detention Basin. 

Village of Bradley, IL, Pheasant Run  Naturalized Detention Basin. 

Village of Sandwich Harvey Creek Conservation Area. 

Village of South Holland, IL, Naturalized Stormwater Basin, Veterans Memorial Park. 

West Pullman Park, Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL. 

Certificate of Recognition: Peg and Bill Jensen, Deerwood Farm.


2007 Awards 

Arquilla Detention Naturalization, Village of Algonquin, Department of Public Works, Algonquin, IL. 

Valley Lakes Wildlife Restoration Project, Valley Lakes Homeowners Association, Round Lake, IL. 

Techny Basin, Village of Glenview, Glenview, IL. 

Native Prairie Restorations in Skokie and Lemont, Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago, Skokie and Lemont, IL. 

RiverPark of Geneva, Geneva, IL. 

Northerly Island, Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL. 

Tuthill Corporate Campus, Tuthill Corporation, Burr Ridge, IL. 

Grand Kankakee Marsh County Park Partnership, Lake County Parks and Recreation Department, Lake County, IN. 

Dunes Creek Stream Restoration, Indiana Dunes State Park, Porter County, IN. 

Settlers Ridge Conservation Development, Kimball Hill Homes, Sugar Grove, IL. 

Ingham Park Conservation Development, Kimball Hill Homes, Aurora, IL. 

HighGrove Conservation Development, Suzanne Casey, Minooka, IL

Certificate of Merit Winners: Chicago River "Fish Hotel", Friends of the Chicago River; Renaissance Circle Native Plant Garden, Renaissance Station Homeowners Association; Restoration and Preservation of the 27215 Annie Glidden Road Property, Jack Pizzo.


2006 Awards 

Beecher School District, Beecher, IL. Project partners: Beecher High School, Village of Beecher, Washington Township Drainage District. 

Canal Origins Park, Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL. 

Eco-Smart Building. 

Inverness Park District South Park Wetlands Demonstration Garden, Inverness, IL. 

Meadows of Birch Lake Homeowners Assoc., Lincolnshire, IL. 

Pizzo and Assoc. Corporate Campus, Leland, IL. 

Riverbank Neighbors, Chicago, IL. Project partner: a Chicago Public School

South Milwaukee, WI. Project partners: South Milwaukee Middle School and High School Campus.

Tellabs, Naperville, IL. 

Village of Lincolnshire, North Park, Lincolnshire, IL. 

Wildwood Nature Center, Park Ridge, IL. 

Certificate of Merit: BP Naperville Campus, IL; Dow Chemical Joliet Plant, IL; Flint Hills Resources- LP-Joliet Facility, IL; The Sanctuary of Lake Bluff, Lake Bluff, IL; Town Square Condominium Association, Schaumburg, IL; U.S. Steel Corporation Gary Works, IN. 


2005 Awards 

63rd Street Beach Underpass, 
Illinois Department of Transportation, Chicago, IL. Project partners: South Lakeshore Drive Reconstruction Project, Chicago Department of Transportation, Chicago Park District. 

Buffalo Grove Prairie, ComEd, Buffalo Grove, IL. Project partner: Buffalo Grove Prairie Guardians. 

Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid Habitat Management, Abbott, Abbott Park, IL. 

Jaycee Park Renovation, Cary Park District, Cary, IL. 

Lake and Shoreline Enhancement Program, Chicago Botanic Garden, Glencoe, IL. Project partners: U.S. and Illinois Environmental Protection Agencies, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Meadow Lake, The Morton Arboretum, Lisle, IL. 

Motorola Prairie Development Project, Motorola, Schaumburg, IL. 

Native Plant Gardens, Oakbrook Terrace Park District, Oakbrook Terrace, IL. 

Native Plant Garden, St. Charles Park District, St. Charles, IL. 

Sanctuary of Bull Valley, Jack Porter & Associates, Inc., Woodstock, IL. Project partners:  IDNR, Illinois Nature Preserve, Division of Water Resources, Boone Creek Alliance, Soil and Water Conservation District, Sanctuary of Bull Valley Master Association (MOA). 

Tuscan Hills, The Development, Monee, IL. Project partners: The Conservation Foundation, Alps Development. 

Villa Park Police Station, Village of Villa Park, IL.  

Wetland Enhancement, Harbor Springs Property Owners’ Association, Aurora, IL. 

Wetland Restoration and Enhancement, Madison Club Homeowners Association, Burr Ridge, IL. 


2004 Awards 

City of Highland Park- Hidden Creek Aqua Park Detention Basin, Park District of Highland Park, Highland Park, IL. Project partners: City of Highland Park, the citizen-led Environmental Commission, Park District of Highland Park. 

Gallery Park Native Landscaping, Village of Glenview, Glenview, IL. 

Humboldt Prairie River, Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL. Project partners: ComEd, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity/Illinois First, Junior Earth Team, The Butterfly Network, Chicago Park District, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, Chicago Audubon Society, Bird Conservation Network. 

Vehe Farm, Village of Deer Park, Deer Park, IL. Project partners: Illinois Open Space, Corlands, Citizens for Conservation. 

Yeargin Creek Improvements, Village of Schaumburg, Schaumburg, IL.


2003 Awards 

Butterprint Farm, Butterprint Farm Rural Wildlife Preservation, Monee, IL.

Central Park Wetland Restoration Project, Village of Park Forest, Park Forest, IL. Project Partners: South Suburban Mayors & Managers Association, Watershed Demonstration Project. 

Chicago Center for Green Technology, Chicago Department of the Environment, Chicago, IL.

Coffee Creek Watershed Preserve, Coffee Creek Watershed Conservancy, Chesterton, IN.

ConopCo Realty & Development, Inc., Sears Prairie Stone, Sears, Roebuck and Co., Hoffman Estates, IL. 

Eden Place Nature Center, Fuller Park Community Development, Chicago, IL.

Fermilab Main Injector Mitigation Project, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Batavia, IL.

Frankfort Prairie Park, Village of Frankfort, Frankfort, IL. 

Independence Grove, Lake County Forest Preserves, Libertyville, IL.

Jackson Park Lagoon Rehabilitation, Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL.

Prairie Sun, Prairie Sun Consultants, Naperville, IL.

Sterne's Fen, Crystal Lake Park District, Crystal Lake, IL. 

Vernon Hills Village Hall Complex, Village of Vernon Hills, Vernon Hills, IL. 


2002 Awards 

Acres Pond Restoration, Crystal Lake Park District, Crystal Lake, IL.

Elmhurst Great Western Prairie, Elmhurst Park District, Elmhurst, IL. Project Partners: Elmhurst Park District, the Prairie Management Advisory Commission. 

Husky Park, Wheeling Park District, Wheeling, IL. 

Northbrook Prairie Restoration Project, Underwriters Laboratories Inc., Northbrook, IL. 

Plum Creek Nature Center, Forest Preserve District of Will County, Beecher, IL.

Prairie Garden Park, Wayne Park Commission-Village of Wayne, Wayne, IL.

Prairie Restoration, American NTN Bearing Manufacturing Corporation, Elgin, IL. 

South Shore Nature Sanctuary, Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL. 

Ty Warner Park, Westmont Park District, Westmont, IL. 

Honorable Mention: The Kilgoblin Wetland, Village of Barrington; North Park Nature Area,
Park District of Franklin Park; Waukegan River Wetland Restoration, Waukegan Park District; Calumet is my BackYard. 


2001 Awards 

Batavia Plain Dirt Gardeners Wildflower Sanctuary on the Batavia Riverwalk, Batavia Park District, Batavia, IL. Project partners: Batavia Plain Dirt Gardeners. 

Des Plaines Riverbank Restoration Project, Village of Riverside, Riverside, IL.

Peck Farm Park, Geneva Park District, Geneva, IL.

Prairie Park, Village of Elburn, Elburn, IL. 

Spring Brook Nature Center, Itasca, IL.   

Twin Lakes Woods, Westmont Park District, Westmont, IL. 

Woodland Park Savannah Restoration, Portage Department of Parks and Recreation, Portage, IN.

William E. Brook Memorial Wetland Sanctuary & Entertainment Center, Village of Antioch, Antioch, IL.


2000 Awards 

Chicago Department of Environment, North Park Village Nature Center Native Plant Garden, Chicago, IL. 

City of Crystal Lake, Crystal Cove Pond Wetland Restoration, Crystal Lake, IL. 

Roselle Public Works, Central Avenue Wetland, Roselle, IL. 

St. Charles Park District, Campton Hills Natural Area, St. Charles, IL. Project partners: St. Charles Park District, Campton Hills Park Natural Area. 

Village of Sugar Grove, Sugar Grove Detention Basin Prairie, Sugar Grove, IL. Project partners: Kaneland Elementary School South Campus, Village of Sugar Grove.

To view the 2000 - 2010 Conservation & Native Landscaping award recipients, visit the US Environmental Protection Agency, Great Lakes National Program Office Greenacres website.