Bloomingdale Trail Construction Begins In Earnest Next Week

By Chuck Sudo in News on Sep 26, 2013 7:00PM

Photo credit: Richard Pallardy

Mayor Emanuel broke ground on the Bloomingdale Trail project last month and the Chicago Department of Transportation announced Thursday the first phase of work would begin on the rails-to-trails project Sept. 30. Some of the inconveniences of the project will be felt by residents as soon as today, however.

The cul-de-sac at Ridgeway and Bloomingdale Avenues will be closed to serve as a staging area for construction crews and will remain closed during construction. This will eventually become the Bloomingdale's western trailhead once the project is completed.

“No Parking” signs will be posted along Bloomingdale and Ridgeway, so heed them because ticketing and towing begins Monday. Residents can call 311 to track the location of towed vehicles. Bloomingdale Avenue will remain open to traffic unless otherwise posted.

Dog owners: you dog friendly areas at Walsh and Churchill Parks will be restricted for the majority of construction. Additionally, the eastern end of Julia de Burgos Park will be closed for most of the construction period, with the Whipple entrance to the park closed. The Albany entrance will remain open, and the playground will remain open.

The first phase of construction will focus on ground-level work at Damen Avenue, Western Avenue, California Avenue and Whipple Street. Crews will start by cleaning and removing paint from the viaducts and embankment walls in order to assess the structural integrity of the concrete. Viaducts and retaining walls will be rehabbed and railroad tracks will be removed to convert the trail into a multi-use path. The embankment walls along Bloomingdale Avenue will be tented to provide additional safety during the removal of lead-based paint.

“Construction crews are moving quickly to build the trail, but are also working to ensure that disruptions are kept to minimum,” said CDOT Commissioner Gabe Klein. “Neighbors can expect some parking and travel restrictions during the construction period.”

For more information on the upcoming construction schedule, visit the project's website and click “News for Neighbors.”