COVID-19: Community Updates
In an effort to keep our residents informed we will be providing updates that are specific to impacts on our community, but encourage all to stay informed of what is happening on all scales. Trusted sources such as the The Centers of Disease Control & Prevention, The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), and The DuPage County Health Department have up-to-date information and updates that can be found on their sites.
Friday, June 5:
Limited Wheaton French Market Continues to Operate with Restrictions
Bensidoun USA continues to provide a modified format of the Wheaton French Market with numerous changes in place to protect the health of shoppers and vendors, including booth spacing, one-way aisles, social distancing requirements, limits on occupancy levels and transaction methods. The market will be open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. each Saturday in the parking lot located near Main Street and Liberty Drive, with the hours between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. reserved for seniors and those with underlying health conditions. Please review the new specific health and safety guidelines if you are planning on visiting the Wheaton French Market.
Monday, June 1:
Library Offering Curbside Drop-Offs and Pickups for Materials
The Wheaton Public Library began Curbside Pickup service starting June 1. This service is available to WPL cardholders only and items must be requested in advance. Curbside Pickup will be available Monday through Friday from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm as well as Tuesday and Thursday from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm. Patrons must request items through their online library account at catalog.wheatonlibrary.org or by calling 630-909-9698. When items are ready, patrons will be notified and should follow the instructions in the notice.
Library book returns also reopened June 1 and will be open all hours. Returned materials are quarantined for 7 days. No fines will be charged while the library is closed. For more information on WPL’s Curbside Pickup service, please visit wheatonlibrary.org/curbside or call 630-909-9698. Return hours will be held Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from noon to 2:00 p.m. and Tuesday and Thursday from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Curbside Returns will be closed once capacity is reached and the bins are full.
Monthly Electronic Recycling Drop-off Events Resume June 13
The City of Wheaton in association with e-Works will restart monthly electronic recycling drop-off events on June 13 with new safeguards in place to protect volunteers, staff and residents dropping off items. The monthly events take place from 9 a.m. to noon on the second Saturday of each month at the Public Works Storage Yard, 820 W. Liberty (near the Wheaton Police Department).
Accepted items include electronics, scrap metals, textiles, fluorescent bulbs and cooking oil. Please be patient with staff and volunteers as they adjust to the new changes. All staff will be wearing a mask or face covering and gloves and participants are asked to stay in their vehicle after entering the event. The following guidelines will be in place to reduce potential COVID-19 exposures and maintain proper social distancing with the public.
- All items to be recycled must be placed in the trunk of the vehicle prior to entry into the event.
- Volunteers cannot enter the passenger compartment of any vehicle.
- Participants are not allowed to exit their vehicle after entering the event.
- All textiles should be placed in a clean plastic bag and small electronics should be in a cardboard box. Cooking oils should be in a sealed container.
- Unbagged textiles and small electronic items will not be accepted.
- Televisions and monitors must be paid for in cash (No change given) or prepaid through the e-Works website. A receipt for prepaid items must be displayed to staff prior to a television or monitor being accepted.
- Participants who are experiencing any respiratory illness or have ill family members are asked to stay at home. Another recycling event is only a month away.
Lakeshore Recycling Systems Resumes Bulk Item Pickup
Wheaton residents served by Lakeshore Recycling Systems for garbage and recycling service can resume putting out bulk or extra items with the appropriate sticker(s) on their pickup day. Each item left outside of the garbage cart requires the appropriate number of waste stickers.
The City of Wheaton asks that you limit the number of extra or bulk items you put at the curb as this service resumes. We would appreciate if you could begin to put things out gradually, so Lakeshore’s crews can begin to catch up with an anticipated higher volume of bulk items.
See the City’s website for more information on stickers for waste items.
Friday, May 29:
Wheaton Enters Phase 3 of State’s Re-Opening Plan
The Northeast Region, which includes the City of Wheaton, has met the required metrics to enter Phase 3 of the state’s phased reopening plan on Friday, May 29. During Phase 3, Illinois residents will still be required to practice safe social distancing measures while continuing to wear face coverings in public settings where social distancing measures cannot be met.
In addition to new guidelines allowing social gatherings of up to ten people, Phase 3 also provides new guidelines for re-opening outdoor spaces, alleviated restrictions on recreational activities, and new modifications for businesses that include the allowance of outdoor seating at restaurants and bars. For full details regarding Phase 3 of the state’s re-opening plan please visit the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s website.
Traffic and Parking Information for Wheaton During Phase 3
Now that Wheaton has entered Phase 3 of the state’s phased reopening plan, the City of Wheaton is excited to welcome the reopening of many of our community’s local businesses, including retail stores, salons, offices, restaurants and others. We encourage the community to be aware of several changes related to traffic and parking to help our businesses succeed in a safe and organized way and allow our community to enjoy the businesses our city has to offer.
The block of Hale Street between Front and Wesley streets has been temporarily closed to vehicle traffic to accommodate outdoor dining. Two large tents in the roadway will be used by local restaurants in this area.
Take-out Area in Parking Garage
The City has reserved spaces on the first floor of the Wheaton Place Parking Garage for restaurants to use for customers picking up take-out orders. If you are picking up an order, please refer to the instructions provided by the restaurant from which you are ordering. The reserved spaces are along the east side of the garage, closest to the alley that connects Front Street and Wesley Street. This alley will remain open to two-way traffic, and drivers should not stop or linger in the alley for pick-ups; doing so will back up traffic in this area.
Please abide by signs throughout the downtown designating customer-only parking. Downtown employees should use the parking areas allocated for them to ensure customers of Wheaton’s local businesses have a place to park.
Other Parking Lots
A number of other businesses in Wheaton will be setting up temporary outdoor dining in private parking lots and areas adjacent to their business.
Thank you for your patience as local businesses begin to reopen and implement new ways to provide service. The City is working with businesses throughout the community on their reopening plans and appreciates your cooperation with these changes.
Wednesday, May 27:
Wheaton Anticipated to Enter Phase 3 of State’s Re-Opening Plan
The Northeast Region, which includes the City of Wheaton, is anticipated to meet the required metrics set by the state’s phased reopening plan to reach Phase 3 on Friday, May 29. During Phase 3, Illinois residents will still be required to practice safe social distancing measures while continuing to wear face coverings in public settings where social distancing measures cannot be met.
In addition to new guidelines allowing social gatherings of up to ten people, Phase 3 will also provide new guidelines for re-opening outdoor spaces, alleviated restrictions on recreational activities, and new modifications for businesses that will include the allowance of outdoor seating at restaurants and bars. For full details regarding Phase 3 of the state’s re-opening plan please visit the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s website.
Friday, May 22:
Bulk Item Pickup Resumes May 26
Wheaton residents served by Lakeshore Recycling Systems for garbage and recycling service can begin to put out bulk or extra items with the appropriate sticker(s) on their pickup day starting Tuesday, May 26.
Tuesday, May 19:
City Council Approves Additional Construction Work for City’s Streetscape Project
The Wheaton City Council approved moving forward with additional construction work for the City’s Streetscape project at its City Council Meeting on Monday, May 18. Portions of construction work originally scheduled for next summer as part of Phase 4 of the City Streetscape project will now be completed this summer due to the significant reduction in vehicular and pedestrian traffic as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and Illinois’s coinciding Stay-at-Home Executive Order.
The additional construction work to be completed this summer will now include:
- Reconstruction of the alley south of Wheaton Meat, the alley north of Carlson True Value, and the alley north of Paoletti’s.
- Regrading and replacement of all sidewalks and curbs at the Southwest corner of Karlskoga Avenue and Hale Street
- New curb placement adjacent to Memorial Park’s new Southwest corner plaza
- New sidewalk along the north side of Karlskoga Avenue
By completing the additional work this summer, the City anticipates eased pressure on businesses and visitors within the downtown area as 2021’s construction season will now be shortened.
Wednesday, May 14:
Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) and Illinois Department of Employment Services (IDES) launched ’Get Hired Illinois’
The new portal is designed to connect workers with available job and career training opportunities across the state of Illinois. Beginning in June, Illinois residents will also have free access to online workforce development courses via a partnership with Coursera. Illinois residents and employers may access ’Get Hired’ at: www.illinois.gov/gethired .
Monday, May 12:
Limited Wheaton French Market to Open May 16 with Restrictions
Bensidoun USA will open a modified format of the Wheaton French Market season on Saturday, May 16 with numerous changes in place to protect the health of shoppers and vendors. The market will be open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. each Saturday in the parking lot located near Main Street and Liberty Drive, with the hours between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. reserved for seniors and those with underlying health conditions. View the full press release to see the updated guidelines for the French Market.
Monday, May 11:
Governor Pritzker Releases Updated Statewide Model, Regional Metrics for Restore Illinois Health Regions
As of midnight May 8, all four regions met the third requirement of available surge capacity of at least 14 percent for ICU beds, medical/surgical beds, and ventilators. View the Governor Office’s latest press release for more information regarding the current statistics of the Restore Illinois Plan.
Friday, May 8:
Fire & Police Departments No Longer Able to Fulfill Drive-By Birthday Requests
Due to an increasing number of calls for service, the Wheaton Fire and Police Departments will not be able to schedule future requests for drive-by visits for birthdays or other celebrations. The Fire and Police Departments will do their best to honor currently scheduled requests through the end of May. View the full announcement for more details.
Thursday, May 7:
Library Announces Start of Curbside Returns
The Wheaton Public Library will begin curbside returns starting May 8. Learn when and how to return items you checked out from the library, plus read about the programs and services available through the Virtual Library.
Block Party Permits Cancelled Until Further Notice
In adherence with the state Executive Order, the City will not be allowing or issuing block party permits until further notice.
Wednesday, May 6
French Market Tentative Reopening Date is May 16
The Wheaton French Market is tentatively scheduled to reopen on May 16 with a number of changes in place, including a limited number of vendors, limits on the number of people in the market at one time, and more. The City will provide more information and a definitive opening date once the plan is approved by local health department officials.
Tuesday, May 5:
Governor Announces 5-Phase Plan To "Restore Illinois"
Illinois Governor Pritzker announced a 5-Phase Plan to re-open Illinois through four regions of the State. The City of Wheaton and DuPage County are within the Northeast Region. Restore Illinois details can be found on the IDPH website.
Illinois Prairie Path Clean-Up & Native Plant Sale Cancelled
The Illinois Prairie Path Clean-Up and the Native Plant Sale events have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Monday, May 4:
Wheaton Park District Provides Update of Special Events, Programs and Facilities
See the update from Wheaton Park District’s Executive Director regarding special events, programs, and facilities.
Friday, May 1:
Stay-At-Home Executive Order Extended
Illinois Governor Pritzker issued a new executive order extending the state’s Stay at Home order through May 30, requiring face coverings for many indoor public places, allowing some types of businesses to begin curbside/delivery service and more.
Friday, April 24:
SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Received and Additional $310 Billion in Funds
The Paycheck Protection Program has received an additional $310 billion in funds to provide small business loans that can be forgiven if used for wages, benefits, rent and utilities. For application details or to see a list of vendors in our area visit: https://bit.ly/2VzH9zN
Wednesday, April 22:
Virtual Restaurant Week Has Begun
Virtual Restaurant Week has begun and will run through April 26. With COVID-19 restrictions, the virtual dining experience will be available for carry-out, pick-up and delivery from more than 16 participants. This week-long dining event is a great opportunity to experience the best restaurants, ice cream shops and bakeries in downtown Wheaton while supporting these businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
During Virtual Restaurant Week participating restaurants will offer specialty menu items and specials at prix-fixe prices. The vast array of menus is available online at downtownwheaton.com/virtual-restaurant-week.
Tuesday, April 21:
City Council Held First Virtual Meeting
Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic and Governor Pritzker’s Executive Order prohibiting gatherings of 10 or more people, the Wheaton City Council began streaming its meetings live while allowing virtual participation on April 20. See instructions on how to participate in future virtual meetings or see the most recent City Council meeting.
Monday, April 20:
No Soliciting, Assistance for Businesses
The City Council approved changes to temporarily prohibit in-person soliciting, and made other changes related to providing assistance for businesses and eliminating some fees.
Memorial Day Parade Cancelled
Due to current pandemic and the high levels of uncertainty regarding gatherings the 2020 Memorial Day Parade has been cancelled.
Monday, April 13:
Police Department Offering Child Safety Seat Assistance via Facetime
While the Wheaton Police Department is currently unable to provide in-person child safety seat inspections, officers are scheduling Facetime appointments to provide assistance. Please call 630-260-2161 for more information.
Thursday, April 9:
Wheaton College To Provide Housing for Local First Responders to Self-Isolate during Pandemic
Wheaton College will provide free housing to local first responders in order to allow them to safely isolate from their families during the growing surge of COVID-19 infections and medical emergencies. If you would like to see more details you can view the whole story here.
Wednesday, April 8:
Congressman Sean Casten to Host Webinars for Nonprofit and Small Business Organizations on April 8 and April 9
The Congressman will be hosting two webinars on resources for nonprofits and small business organizations created by the recently passed CARES Act, for more information please visit the COVID-19: Business Resources Page.
Pace Announces Temporary Suspension of Service
Pace announced a temporary suspension of service starting Monday, April 13, 2020. Service on the Pace commuter routes and Shuttle Bugs listed will be suspended until further notice. Buses will NOT operate until further notice. Pace Bus Tracker and other trip planning software will be updated as soon as possible to reflect this temporary suspension of service. View the official notice, or visit http://pacebus.com/ for more details.
Tuesday, April 7:
Updates from the Wheaton Public Library
Please see this information on how to receive a temporary library card, virtual library resources, online programs happening now, a message from the Library Director and more.
Monday, April 6:
Message from Mayor Suess
See this video message from Wheaton Mayor Phil Suess about what the Wheaton community needs to do over the next two weeks to protect our community from the spread of COVID-19.
Choose DuPage To Host COVID-19 Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources Webinar on Tuesday, March 6 at 2:00 p.m.
Choose DuPage will be hosting a webinar to assist business owners with the ever-changing environment surrounding COVID-19. The webinar will discuss small business relief efforts including: The Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program, CARES Act – Paycheck Protection Program, SBA 7(a) loans, Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund, and more. Interested parties can register here.
Thursday, April 2:
Residents Sharing Support
Follow the City of Wheaton on Facebook or Twitter to see some examples of residents creating wonderful displays of appreciation throughout the community! Search for "@CityOfWheaton" on Facebook and Twitter.
Tuesday, March 31:
See New Business Resources Section
In an effort to be a continued source of information during this difficult time, the City of Wheaton has compiled a COVID-19 Business Resources section on its website to help connect businesses with state and federal grant programs, loans and other guidance.
Monday, March 30:
DuPage County Health Department Now Reporting Confirmed Cases by Municipality
The DuPage County Health Department released an online dashboard showing lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 throughout DuPage County broken down by municipality. Previously, DuPage County Health Department reported the daily total number of confirmed cases in DuPage County, whereas this dashboard also lists confirmed cases by municipality.
Please note that information on how many individuals in Wheaton have tested positive for COVID-19 is collected and maintained by the DuPage County Health Department.
Downtown Wheaton Association Begins The ’Downtown Gift Card Challenge’
Looking for a way to support local businesses during this time? The Downtown Wheaton Association encourages you to take their Downtown Gift Card Challenge.
Shop one of the many restaurants or service businesses in downtown Wheaton! Imagine what we could all do by investing $25 into a downtown business.
Simply visit a business’ website or Facebook page or call them directly to place your order. It’s that simple! The DWA does not sell each businesses’ gift cards; please contact them directly to purchase. See the Downtown Wheaton Association’s Facebook page for examples of local businesses you can support.
Friday, March 27:
See What You Can/Can’t Flush From the City’s Sewer Division on NBC 5
The City’s Sewer Division was recently interviewed by NBC Chicago for a story on what you can/can’t flush down the toilet. This is especially important as residents may be flushing things such as cleaning wipes or baby wipes due to limited toilet paper availability, and our sewer systems are busier than normal with more people staying home. See the story from NBC 5 Chicago.
Thursday, March 26:
Changes You’ll See in Fire/EMS Response
The Wheaton Fire Department is taking additional measures to limit the spread of COVID-19 in the community. Please see this message on what you may notice in our response to emergency calls.
Food Insecurity Crisis Fund for District 200 Families
The Student Excellence Foundation for District 200 has established a Food Insecurity Crisis Fund to assist District 200 families in need during this time. If you’d like to help or for more information, see their website.
Tuesday, March 24:
Curbside Electronic Recycling Suspended
Lakeshore Recycling Services will be temporarily suspending curbside electronic recycling pickup services.
Monday, March 23:
Mayor Issues Message Regarding Emergency Declaration
At the March 23 City Council Special Meeting, the City Council approved a declaration of local emergency. Please see the following related items:
- Message from the Mayor - 3/23/20
- Declaration of Local State of Emergency - Coronavirus (PDF)
- City Council Special Meeting Video - 3/23/20
Planning Department Service Modifications
Please see the Modified Services During COVID-19 Response for Planning Department services.
Metra Adjusted Schedules
Due to COVID-19, Metra announced it will be switching to an alternate weekday schedule starting Monday, March 23. This is to adjust to reduced ridership. Please see Metra’s website for the most current schedules and more information.
Saturday, March 21:
Bulk Item Collection Temporarily Suspended
In order to continue providing uninterrupted garbage and recycling pickup service, Lakeshore Recycling Services will be temporarily suspending its bulk item and white goods collection until further notice. For more details please see COVID-19: City & Community Services.
Effective immediately, all Wheaton Park District and school playgrounds will be closed through April 7. For more details please see COVID-19: City & Community Services.
Friday, March 20:
City Issues Message Regarding Governor’s Executive Order & City Facilities
The City rolled out changes to allow City staff to continue serving the public, without the need for the community to physically visit our City facilities. Please see more information here on the options for conducting City business online, by phone and alternatives for coming into City Hall.
Thursday, March 19:
Access to City Facilities, Changes To Bill Payments, Water Shutoffs, and Parking Permits
Starting at 8 a.m. Friday, March 20, City facilities will restrict access to the public except by appointment. There will be signs posted at the entrances of City facilities instructing visitors of how they can conduct City business online, using the City’s drive-through mailbox, or by phone. In addition, the City’s Police and Fire stations have a call box/buzzer outside their facilities to request assistance. For more details please see COVID-19: City & Community Services.
Alternate Ways to Access Police Services
Anyone needing emergency services, including a traffic crash or to request a police/fire/EMS response should continue to call 9-1-1. Individuals solely in need of a non-emergency police report can call 630-260-2161 and select option “6” to request to speak with an officer, or request a call back by sending an email to email@example.com.
Modified Building & Code Department Services Put In Place
Please see current modifications to our service delivery:
- Building & Code Department Modified Service Delivery Protocol (PDF)
- Building & Code Department Inspection Protocol (PDF)
Message from the Mayor
The City will be cancelling meetings of City boards and commissions until at least May 18. The exception will be those boards/commissions that have pending business that cannot be postponed. In such cases, the number of people in attendance will be limited per state mandates, and social distancing procedures will be followed. The Wheaton City Council will continue to meet to conduct City business.
The City is working to reschedule these events to a later date. The events that will not take place on their originally scheduled dates include:
- Recycling Extravaganza (originally April 4) - Cancelled
- Start of the French Market season (originally April 11 start) - Opening tentatively set for May 16
- Arbor Day celebration (originally April 24) - Cancelled
- Native Plant Sale (originally April 25) - Cancelled
The City anticipates additional events will be postponed and/or cancelled.