South Side Lakefront To Get Separate Paths For Bikes, Pedestrians

CHICAGO (CBS) — Construction has begun on an project to create separate lakefront paths for bicyclists and pedestrians on the South Side.

The city broke ground Sunday on the project to create the separated trails between 31st and 51st streets. Cyclists will get a lane closer to Lake Shore Drive, while pedestrians will get a trail closer to the lake.

The project is aimed at relieving congestion on the Lakefront Path, avoiding collisions between joggers and cyclists, and encouraging more people to get outside.

“Imagine how much more inviting and relaxing and popular the lakefront’s going to be – even more popular than it is today – once we’re able to separate people on bikes and on foot,” Active Transportation Alliance executive director Ron Burke said.

He joined Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Chicago Park District CEO Michael Kelly, and a handful of others to announce the project Sunday.

The first phase of the plan – from 31st Street to 40th Street – will cost about $1.8 million, and will be paid for with Chicago Park District capital funds, and should be complete in December. The second phase – from 40th Street to 51st Street – is still in the planning stages.

Earlier this year, the city announced a similar effort to create separate paths for runners and cyclists between Fullerton Avenue and Ohio Street. That project will begin next year.

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