Bloomingdale Trail Opening Date Pushed Back

By Chuck Sudo in News on Jun 20, 2014 1:45PM

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Photo credit: BlueFairlane

Officials with The 606 rails-to-trails project, best known as the Bloomingdale Trail, are expected to announce Friday the project will be completed next June as opposed to its original target date of this autumn. The reason? Chiberia, y’all!

The series of polar vortices endured by the Chicago area kept the ground along the project frozen well into spring which, according to Chicago Transportation Commissioner Rebekah Scheinfeld, delayed structural work along the trail, and moving utility lines. Scheinfeld added construction crews discovered conditions along the century-old abandoned Canadian Pacific Railway bed weren’t what they expected to find.

All this has pushed back every other facet of the schedule. Landscaping will be postponed until next spring to allow the over 250,000 plantings to take root, and concrete pouring along sections of the trail will happen in late summer and early autumn.

The good news is construction is nearing the halfway mark. Railings for the trail may be installed as early as next week. Concrete foundations for access ramps are complete at Rockwell, Humboldt Blvd., Wood and California. Railroad tracks and ties have been removed between Kimball and Ridgeway. Leavitt Avenue, which was closed to traffic while construction is in progress, now has one lane open. Officials are also expected to announce the development of a sixth ground-level park, four acres in size, adjacent to Ridgeway along the trail. That park will be developed over a two-year period.