Folks who wish to save parade-watching space on Central Street still have to wait until 6 a.m. on July 1 to get those chairs, blankets, towels, flags and ropes in place. RoundTable photo

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… that the City reports that work on Fountain Square is “nearing completion, with final installations associated with the fountain system and Veterans Memorial Walls scheduled to occur in July.” The list includes installing replacement glass panels at the memorial wall (since the original glass was damaged during shipment), repairing a leak in the fountain’s plumbing system and testing the fountain system, all of which could be finished by the end of July.

… that on May 29, the City sold parking lot 53, 100 Chicago Ave., to a developer who plans to construct a five-story, mixed use development on the northwest corner of Howard and Chicago. Once the sale is finalized, which the City anticipates to be in mid-July, the people who held parking permits in the 24-space lot will have to look for other places. The City says it is “working with permit-holders to issue refunds for the remainder of their permit period or to transfer their permit to an alternative City lot. City Lot 1, located at South Boulevard and Hinman Avenue, is the nearest City parking lot with permit spaces currently available.”

… that some folks are setting off fireworks, even though it is still June and fireworks are illegal here – except at the lakefront display on July 4. Folks who wish to save parade-watching space on Central Street still have to wait until 6 a.m. on July 1 to get those chairs, blankets, towels, flags and ropes in place.

… that the legal department of Phantom Fireworks offered some suggestions for keeping pets calm during the light and noise of exploding fireworks: Pets should be kept inside but not left at home alone; windows, doors, including pet doors, should be closed; and owners should make the pet feel safe.

… that gas prices in the area fell about 3.6 cents per gallon in mid-June, averaging $3.19 per gallon, according to GasBuddy’s daily survey of 1,437 stations in Chicago. Including the change locally during the early part of June, prices on June 14 were 65.2 cents per gallon higher than a year ago and are 4.8 cents per gallon lower than a month ago. The national average has dropped 3.1 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 60.9 cents per gallon higher than a year ago.

“Average gas prices in the U.S. have fallen to their lowest in a month, following oil’s continued slump as OPEC appears poised to adjust oil production levels and the U.S. nears its hitting 11 million barrels of oil pumped per day, the highest level ever,” said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy. “We see gas prices falling slightly into late June or early July before odds rise of hurricane season leading to some volatility at the pump, which could lead prices higher short term,” Mr. DeHaan added.

From our readers:
TG: Despite appearances, it is not a water fountain – there is no water.  — Allen Jacque

From TG: Thank you for the photo and comment. TG became curious and sought an answer. On June 19, Dave Stoneback, Director of the City’s Public Works Agency, provided the following information to the RoundTable: “At this time, there are four drinking fountains turned off in Evanston-owned parks. Two of them are on the same water service at James Park, one is at South Boulevard Beach Park and the last one is at McCulloch Park. The fountain at McCulloch is scheduled to be replaced this year and will remain off until replaced. The South Boulevard Beach Park was being renovated and a new drinking fountain installed. The drinking fountain will be installed by the end of the week [June 22] and then water samples will be collected. We hope to have testing results back by next week and will turn the drinking fountain on at that time. The drinking fountains at James Park had all been turned on in early April, as requested by residents. However, due to below-freezing temperatures that occurred later April, the waterline froze and broke.  These two fountains were then shut off for repairs. The fountains at James Park have been repaired and a water sample has been collected and sent in for lead testing. We anticipate getting the results back later this week and if the results are favorable (which is expected) the fountains will be turned on immediately. The lead testing results for the other city owned drinking fountains in parks are available on the City’s website.”

TG: Here’s a lilac-painted garden gate in alley west of Dodge. – Gail Siegel

From TG: Thanks for another great pic, Ms. Siegel. It was hard to top your last photo, but you seem to know many places to look for hidden beauty.

TG: Do you know anything about the loud, high pitched whining sound coming out of the north side of the Welsh-Ryan arena the past week or so? I assume it’s due to the renovations and seems to be coming from the vents on the north side. It’s been going on 24 hours a day and I wonder who I might ask about this – is it temporary?           – Thanks, Matt R.

From TG:
Storer Rowley, the Vice President for Media Relations at Northwestern, is looking into this. TG will keep you posted.

The Traffic Guy thinks …
… that the theme of this year’s Fourth of July parade, “Inspired By Our Diversity,” is one that the whole country could take to heart.