As the old Copley Hospital campus in Aurora slowly begin transforming from neighborhood blight to neighborhood gem, there are already outward signs this historic site is the future of the community.
While the rows of metal fencing and heavy construction equipment dominate the landscape and reflect the mammoth redevelopment project going on inside, it’s the Fox Valley Park District’s colorful 1.3-acre park to the east, with lush green grass, unmarred white sidewalks and paths, along with the latest in playground equipment and a new splash pad, that lets onlookers know something special is going on.
And, on the far south side of the 341,000-square-foot campus, there are plenty of cars lining up in the parking lot that feeds into what was once the nurses’ dormitory that adjoins the original old hospital built in the late 1800s.
After taking a hard hat tour of the campus on Thursday, I exited with at least a dozen stories that could be written right now about this huge construction project. But for now, the biggest news is coming out of that 1957 nurses’ building because it’s the first completed building at the site and now the new headquarters of East Aurora School District 131.