Project Would Create Hike-And-Bike Path From Millennium Park To Ind. Dunes

CHICAGO (CBS) — OK, outdoor lovers: Imagine riding your bike from Millennium Park all the way to the Indiana Dunes. It’s part of an ambitious new conservation initiative.

CBS 2’S Roseanne Tellez reports on a plan that would be sure to transform Chicago’s long-neglected Southeast Side.

Local, state and federal officials joined together Friday to announce the Millennium Reserve Initiative, which would create the hiking-and-biking trails linking the two regions.

Phase one would transform the once industrial area surrounding Lake Calumet, turning it into a tourist destination while closing the Burnham Gap and restoring the lakefront. But the project also aims to create jobs and eventually expand Chicago’s green space by 140,000 acres.

“Our lake is our Grand Canyon, is our Yellowstone Park,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel said at a news conference.

Emanuel says the scope of the project allows officials to tap into federal funds earmarked for American’s great outdoors. It may also represent a trend toward urban conservation.

“There’s a legacy of industrial development here, but alongside that industrial development are some of the jewels of the South Side of Chicago,” says Marc Miller, director of the state Department of Natural Resources.

Peggy Salazar says the nature has been here all along and it’s time the Chicago area discovered what’s in its own backyard.

The state is laying out nearly $18 million from Illinois Jobs Now to launch the project. It’s basically a down payment.

Millennium Reserve combines a slew of smaller projects from various organizations under one umbrella to leverage more federal money.

How long until you can ride on that bike path? Probably a couple of years, and much longer for the bigger project.

More from Roseanne Tellez
  • tom Sharp

    Over/under for muggings or worse happening to anyone making that round-trip is Three!

  • dan

    I agree fully Tom, A nice ride on a nice day will come crashing to an end when thugs from thugville push the unsuspecting bicyclist off his bike, robs him, (and rapes if female) and then rides away down the millenium trail.

    Why do I dare say this :0 Because it has happened many times on the existing bike path along the south lakefront-Need camera every 100 yards and police patrols constantly to make this a success

  • Jim hamilton

    Sounds like a runoff for the overflow from the cesspool so it can have drainage into Indiana

    I have a dream too!

    DECATUR, Ill. (CBS) — A downstate lawmaker would like to kick Chicago and Cook County out of the Illinois.
    CBS 2 Political Producer Ed Marshall says state Rep. Bill Mitchell (R-Decatur) finds that Cook County dominates all politics and legislation in Springfield, and he thinks it is time for the state to cut its largest population center adrift for the “betterment” of the rest of Illinois.
    He says Cook County should be allowed to exist apart from the state like the District of Columbia, with its own government.

  • Jim Hamilton

    I have just one question

    Do you think in a few years Pat Quinn would ride down that path with out his body guards ?

  • Jmason

    That is what your taxs money is for. To make it easyer to get rob or Kill. So the robbers & Killlers don’t have to go to far from home.

  • Some News from Around… « City Parks Blog

    […] Reserve project, situated south of Chicago, will restore 15,000 acres of open space. ( Local) Like this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

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