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City Finally Ready to Start Working on Bloomingdale Trail Plans?

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We admit it: We have High Line envy. Yesterday, our cousins over at Curbed NY took a stroll through the just-opened second phase of the High Line. Here in the Windy City, we're still talking about thinking about maybe — maybe! — getting our act together and laying out some plans for the aggravatingly slow-moving Bloomingdale Trail. Nearly two years ago, the city announced that it had selected Arup North America to do preliminary design work for the park, but then they stalled on actually awarding the contract. Today, the city sent out a press release titled, "Bloomingdale Trail design work gets under way." Great news! But what does it mean? Public meetings (which haven't been scheduled yet), environmental studies, an evaluation of the trail's viaducts, and eventually (hopefully), producing some actual designs. According to the press release, Arup's initial design work will be finished in late 2012. As Steven Vance noted this morning, Mayor Emanuel and his new CDOT chief, Gabe Klein, got the ball rolling on a handful of innovative bikeway treatments over the past three days. Maybe they can work their magic with the Bloomingdale Trail as well.
· Bloomingdale Trail design work gets under way [City of Chicago]
· Stalled on the Bloomingdale Trail [Chicago Reader]