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Olympic Plan May Restrict Access to Lake

By Tim State in News on Apr 5, 2009 8:40PM

Image by TouringCyclist.

Details of how Chicago would implement the 2016 Olympics are coming out as the IOC tours the city. One such detail includes security restrictions that might limit access to the portions of the lakefront for most of the summer.

A private beach would be created from use of by the athletes living in the Olympic Village. The lakefront area would be connected to the village by a pedestrian bridge, and as a result access to the lakefront path would have to be “redirected.” Vehicle access on South Lake Shore Drive might also be limited.

Doug Arnot, Chicago 2016 director of venues and games operations, said bid officials are working with city and state transportation officials to "ensure a connection with the bike paths." "Our proposal would be for a 'Bike the Drive' throughout the Games," he said.

Bicycle enthusiasts are not amused.

Chicago 2016 officials say the post-Olympic legacy of the plan—providing access from west of the drive to what Arnot called an underutilized area of the lakefront—would outweigh the temporary dislocations for recreational users of the area. [Trib]