Can you imagine having trail access to Chicago’s diverse neighborhoods and the suburbs as a bicyclist or runner?
Did you know the Chicago River already has 13.2 miles of trails for biking and walking and that the city will complete an additional 1.7 trail miles in 2017?
We couldn’t be more excited for the next steps in the campaign to build a continuous Chicago River Trail. It's energizing to think about the river trail's potential to promote the city's cultural life.
As highlighted in the Chicago River Trail Action Plan, a river trail system would bring countless benefits to the City of Chicago and the region. Growing evidence from Chicago and other cities shows that building safe and accessible trails is smart public policy.
By providing a comfortable environment for walking and biking, trails encourage more people to get around on foot and two-wheels. Biking and walking improves public health outcomes, protects the environment and increases economic development activity.
So what has Active Trans been up to since releasing the Chicago River Trail Action Plan?
The campaign has ramped up advocacy efforts. Recently, officials from Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development unveiled concepts in the Goose Island redevelopment plan that help advance the river trail.
In addition, during a community meeting in the North River area, residents called on the city to complete the Weber Spur Trail -- a key Northwest Side connection. We'll continue to ensure these projects are completed with a river trail in mind.
One of the key steps Active Trans took in its river trail campaign was hiring me, Steve Simmons, as the Trail Advocacy Manager. During my career, I’ve worked on successful advocacy campaigns with the Chicago Jobs Council and most recently the Sierra Club of Illinois.
From my experience, the engagement of supporters like you is crucial to the success of our campaign.
Stay tuned for more opportunities to actively support a Chicago River Trail. We'd love for you to join us at upcoming community meetings along the river. Click here for more information about the campaign.
Please contact me with questions and ideas at 312-216-0472 or [email protected] With your help, we can create a safe river trail with low-stress connections that all Chicagoans will be able to enjoy.