Bloomingdale Trail Neighbor Worries 'Design Flaw' Could Attract Sketchy Characters

By Emma G. Gallegos in News on Aug 3, 2015 9:35PM

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Those 606 fences aren't always so awkward (Photo by Krysta Ann Williams/Chicagoist)

Bucktown resident Mike Runkle literally lives a foot away from the Bloomingdale Trail, which is great in a lot of ways. He says he uses the path a four times a week and has explored neighborhoods he otherwise wouldn't. There's only one problem, he says: there's a weird design flaw that creates what he calls a "horse stall" right in front of his patio.

He told DNA Info, "About five months ago I was worried it might be the perfect spot for a hobo to sleep in, but thankfully that hasn't happened. Now I just call it the horse stall."

You can see what it looks like here:

He says the workers admitted the weird 8-foot by 4-foot space was a flaw. You'll see guardrails set up in the same way near viaducts along the trail but none so close to a home as this one at the 1700 block of North Wolcott Avenue. Runkle says he's hoping to at least get some taller shrubs to screen his view a bit so that "peeping Toms" or others can't peer in. However, the Trust for Public Land hasn't been super responsive to emails sent in June. (Maybe because the Bloomingdale Trail still has its work cut out for it?)

Okay, so it sounds like the NIMBYest of NIMBY complaints but Runkle has a sense of perspective about it. He told DNA Info: "If you want a haircut a certain way and it's not right, you might ask for a few modifications. I am not complaining. As a gesture of goodwill for those who are very much affected by [the trail] it seems they would be able to make this change."