- Chicago Newstips by Community Media Workshop - http://www.newstips.org -

Walk Highlights Progress in Trail Plan

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With plans advancing to develop a bicycle trail along an abandoned Northwest Side railroad track, Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail [2] and other groups will hold a walking tour alongside the proposed trail on Saturday, June 24.

On June 20 a City Council committee approved the acquisition of seven parcels of land at Bloomingdale and Albany to create a playlot and access point for the proposed three-mile Bloomingdale Trail and Greenway.

The city is also moving to acquire the elevated railroad embankment from Canadian Pacific Railway, and the Chicago office of the Trust for Public Land [3] is working to acquire railroad land near Kimball for another access point. The Trust also helped getting title to the Albany parcels.

Parks in Bucktown and the McCormick-Tribune YMCA at 1834 N. Lawndale on the western end of the trial will provide other access points, said Josh Deth of Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail. The challenge has been finding public land in Logan Square along with western part of the trail; Logan Square has one of the lowest ratios of park space in the city, he said.

(The new Albany playlot will serve over 4,000 children who live within a half-mile radius, according to Friends of Bloomingdale Trail.)

The group hopes for access points every four or five blocks along the 38-block trail, said Deth. “If they have access, local residents will use the trail and help maintain it and keep it safe.”

The walking tour starts at the YMCA at 10 a.m., Saturday, June 24, with a reception at 12 noon at the Goose Island Brew Pub, 1800 N. Clybourn. It’s cosponsored by the Chicagoland Bicycle Federation, Friends of the Parks, and Friends of the Bloomindale Trail.