Latest round of IDNR bike path grants support development of trails in seven counties, including projects in Madison and St. Clair Counties
A total of $2,161,000 in grants to help communities develop and improve 13 local bike path projects throughout Illinois was announced today by Governor JB Pritzker.
“Bicycle path projects are excellent drivers of job creation and economic development, while also increasing road safety for bicyclists,” Governor Pritzker said. “Illinois’ beautiful natural landscape should be accessible and safe for all to enjoy, and I’m pleased that projects like this help make that goal a reality.”
The Illinois Bicycle Path Grant Program is administered by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Funding comes from a percentage of the motor vehicle title fees, providing a maximum grant award of $200,000 per project for development projects, with no maximum grant award limit for land acquisition projects.
The purpose of the program is to provide financial assistance to eligible local units of government to assist them in the acquisition, construction, and rehabilitation of public off-road, non-motorized bicycle paths and directly related facilities, such as a drinking water and restrooms, in Illinois.
“The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is pleased to provide funding to help local communities encourage families and individuals to get outside, enjoy the outdoors, and reduce their carbon footprint with more biking and less driving,” said IDNR Director Natalie Phelps Finnie.
This year’s bicycle path grant recipients, their projects and grant amounts are:
Bourbonnais Township Park District, Perry Farm Multi-Use Trail Extension – $200,000
This project will provide a safe trail connection to the many businesses and attractions of West Bradley and South Bourbonnais, improve non-motorized traffic safety in the area, and encourage more and safer bicycle and pedestrian traffic in the area. This will connect non-motorized traffic in the area to more than 50 miles of the Riverfront Trail Bike Path, which stretches from Kankakee River State Park, past Kankakee Community College to Splash Valley Aquatic Center, much of which is scenic in nature along the Kankakee River.
Carol Stream Park District, Veterans Park Bike Trail – $200,000
A 2,230-foot-long, eight-foot-wide trail with a bituminous concrete surface. The project will include two retaining walls to contain fill slopes from extending into an adjacent detention pond.
Champaign County Forest Preserve District, Lake of the Woods Bike Path Renovation – $100,000
Proposed Lake of the Woods Bike Path renovation project is the renovation of a half mile of existing asphalt path and the addition of signage. The path is 10 feet wide and considered multi-use. The proposal includes repairing and remilling the existing asphalt with a new asphalt surface.
Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Tinley Creek Trail Improvements, Black Spur – $117,500
The proposed project would include repairs on the 1-mile black connector trail that, while modest in length, serves as a critical spur connecting to the 9.1-mile Tinley Creek Red Trail Loop. The pavement is currently distressed with extensive alligator cracking, surface raveling, and bumps caused by tree roots, creating an increasingly unsafe surface for all users with trip hazards and reduced friction when wet. The proposed work includes minor improvements to the trail access parking area at Catalina Grove by resurfacing the pavement and installing upgraded disabled-accessible curb ramps and detectable warnings. These repairs and improvements would substantially improve the trail and enhance visitors’ safety and enjoyment of the trail.
Freeport Park District, Krape Park Bike Path Project – $200,000
The proposed project will be a 10-foot-wide bike path that runs just over a half mile, winding along the beautiful Yellow Creek and offering natural connections to local and regional bike paths throughout the area. The Freeport Park District’s project includes a small parking area for trail users.
Heartland Community College, Birky Pond Bike Path Constitution Trail Continuation – $200,000
The Birky Pond Bike Path on Heartland Community College’s campus in Normal is envisioned as an invitation to the public and the Heartland Community College community to fully enjoy views of the campus pond, the wildlife it attracts, and the native vegetation that thrives on the pond’s banks.
Madison County Mass Transit District, Chain of Rocks Shared Use Path – $200,000
The proposed Chain of Rocks Shared Use Path is a nearly one-mile trail beginning at Mitchell Elementary School and running east to Liberty Place along the south side of Chain of Rocks Road. The path is in a densely populated residential area with a few commercial businesses at the west end of the project. Madison County residents will benefit by having a safe, all-weather surfaced path for travel, commuting and recreation.
McHenry County Conservation District, Prairie Trail Renovation Project – $200,000
The district proposes to renovate a section of the Prairie Trail, an existing asphalt bicycle path that is more than 20 years old. Due to age, the trail needs renovation. This will occur between Hillside Road and Edgewood Road, which is about 1.25 miles long. The proposed project includes resurfacing the 10-foot-wide asphalt trail, restoring the turf shoulders to achieve positive drainage, and implementing detectable warnings at intersections.
Mount Prospect Park District, Commonwealth Edison Trail – $137,500
The existing trail needs repair. Proposed improvements include accessible entry points, seating areas and signage. Beginning at Algonquin Road, these proposed improvements are for a three-quarter-mile portion of the trail extending to Linneman Road.
Rockford Park District, Sports Core Recreation Path Rehabilitation – $146,000
The proposed project consists of the replacement of the one-mile-long Sports Core Recreation Path to improve access for maintenance. Removing and replacing the path will allow the path to be repaired to provide appropriate drainage. Four bridges along the path will be treated to remove rust to prevent loss. It is anticipated that replacing the curved portion of the path will reduce safety concerns related to maintenance. Repairing the bridges will prolong their useful life and allow the path to remain open.
St. Clair County Transit District, MetroBikeLink Extension – $200,000
The five-mile expansion of St. Clair County’s light rail line from Shiloh-Scott Station to MidAmerica St. Louis Airport in Mascoutah has given the St. Clair County Transit District an opportunity to expand its 15-mile MetroBikeLink shared-use path system, which runs adjacent to the light rail line. This trail will be an important part of efforts to link transportation modes in the community. The trail will add three miles to the growing trail system.
Village of Berkeley, Berkely Park Bike Path Improvement – $60,000
The project will extend into the Illinois Prairie Path and highlight a vital component of the Berkeley Park identity while increasing its significance within the park as an anchor to develop future improvements around. This project is intended to be a first step toward realizing a five-year plan toward the park’s complete reimagining.
Village of Glen Carbon, Glen Carbon Road Shared Use Path, Phase II – $200,000
The Village of Glen Carbon will extend the shared use path one-third mile northwest from Lakewood Drive to Mark Trail Drive. Future phases will extend to Illinois 159, totaling one mile of off-road share use path. When fully implemented, the shared use path will provide connectivity and supply alternate modes of transportation between various subdivisions, Schon Park with connections to the MCT Trail System, MCT bus stops, and to various restaurants and commercial destinations near Illinois 159. Glen Carbon will use local funds to supplement the cost of the project.