Perhaps prompted by the various successes of the soon-to-be-opened Bloomingdale Trail (aka the 606), Chicago's own rails-to-trails take on New York's High Line, the Chicago Department of Transportation has apparently re-opened the conversation on a similar project—the Weber Spur Trail—on Chicago's Northwest side. Formerly a Union Pacific Railroad right-of-way and part of the Chicago and North Western lines, the Weber Spur starts at Devon Avenue in Lincolnwood, a few blocks west of Lincoln Avenue, then cuts southwest through Albany Park's LaBagh Woods, and across several bridges, before ending above Lawrence Avenue in Mayfair. The Spur was used from 1897 into the 1980s but eventually fell into disuse. The tracks were finally pulled up in 2010, though the spur has otherwise sat dormant and peppered with trash, entertaining various speculations about the trail's future. But that speculation will soon end at the first public meeting for the Weber Spur, scheduled for May 26th at the nearby North Park University.
According to the meeting notice, the meeting will provide new insight on the Weber Spur's potential goals and intentions, and will also host break-out sessions where attendees can help create a vision for the multi-use trail. The trail has the potential to revitalize the otherwise blighted thoroughfare while also providing cyclists on the Northwest side easier city access with uninterrupted connections from the Valley Line Bike Trail to Elston Avenue.
·CDOT Notice for Weber Spur Public Meeting No. 1 [Albany Park Neighbors]
·Information on the Weber Spur from the Greenway Planning Database [Greenways]
·Urban Land Institute report including information on Weber Spur's potential impact for Devon Avenue Corridor [Village of Lincolnwood]
·Previous 606 coverage [Curbed Chicago]