A new 14-mile multi-use trail is under development along Sauk Trail in the South Suburbs. The Sauk Trail Preservation Path will run through Lynwood, Sauk Village, South Chicago Heights, Park Forest, Richton Park and Steger.
All six municipalities are working with the Forest Preserve District of Cook County and Active Trans to create a plan for trail development. Initial discussions about the trail include planning for improved road crossings and connectivity between neighborhoods.
Not only will the trail improve biking and walking accessibility in these six communities, but it also will have plenty of historical interest. Sauk Trail was previously a route for the people using the Underground Railroad and it was route used by the Potawatomie Indians. The new trail will enhance the historical aspects of Sauk Trail and improve access to destinations in the corridor.
Similar to the Illinois and Michigan Canal State Trail extension under development in the nearby Southwest Suburbs, the Sauk Trail path has the potential to provide a positive impact on economic development, community growth and public health.
The path will mean more recreation options for local residents and more opportunities for engaging in healthy lifestyles. Biking and walking access to schools, businesses, forest preserves and transit connections will all be greatly enhanced by this new project.
Additionally, biking and walking is getting an upgrade in Northwest Indiana thanks to the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission Unified Trail Wayfinding Guide. The guide will improve signage and wayfinding along Northwest Indiana’s trail network.
Active Trans served on the steering committee to help with guide planning. Up-to-date trail signage is imperative for improving wayfinding so that trail users know where to access local businesses and cultural destinations. By unifying signage under the new guide, trail users will have an easier time identifying and accessing local trails.