Bloomingdale Trail: Innovative project takes parks to new height - New York News

Bloomingdale Trail: Innovative project takes parks to new heights

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

An elevated green space project is in the works in the Logan Square neighborhood.

The Bloomingdale Rail Line was designed to keep people and trains safe by separating them. Now, what was once a barrier between communities will bring them together through the 606 Project.

"You had this lively industrial corridor, that's shifted over to new uses, so the structure that served that industrial corridor is now being shifted over to a new use," Beth White, Director of the Chicago Region Office for the Trust for Public Land, explains.

Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail brought in people like Beth White to come up with this elevated green space. Public and private funding are making this project possible.

The 2.7-mile stretch will feature paths for both biking and walking. Places to rest and relax will also be available. The trail will have ramp access to various parks in the Logan Square, Humboldt Park, Bucktown and Wicker Park neighborhoods.

Construction crews are busy paving and prepping the bridges - even removing one on Ashland and preparing to place it on Western.

Neighbors are intrigued and excited about the progress.

"It's not fun trying to find extra parking, but besides that it's great," says Sarah Levine. "I'm looking forward to it. I can't wait to see what it turns into. It's very promising."

"We couldn't be more excited," Liz Smith, a nearby resident says. "We've been waiting for something like this to come by for years, so we're very excited."

38 bridges in all are being worked on across four neighborhoods.

"It was a really unique and clever way to take this 100-year-old piece of our industrial heritage and purpose it for the next hundred years to serve the city in an entirely new way," White says.

Traffic will be disrupted on Saturday at 5 a.m. as a portion of the Ashland Bridge will be moved down North Avenue and make its way to its new home on Western.

The hope is for the 606 Project to open this fall.

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