CHICAGO — The rehabbing and revitalization of the city's lakefront trail will begin in earnest on the Far North Side this summer, Mayor Rahm Emanuel's office said.
City crews will soon begin repaving 7 miles of lakefront trail starting at Ardmore Avenue in Edgewater, the northernmost point of the trail, Emanuel's office said in a press release.
The work is part of Emanuel's Building on Burnham plan to enhance the lakefront. Much of the entire lakefront trail will be repaved, and the city hopes to eventually create separate trails for bikers and joggers, Emanuel said.
"We are working towards making the lakefront safer, more accessible and more enjoyable for more Chicagoans," Emanuel said in a statement.
Trail work this summer will be restricted to the path between Ardmore and Diversey Avenue, about a 7-mile stretch of trail. Cracks in the trail will be repaired and new trail stripes and signs will be added, the city said.
Portions of the trail will close temporarily during the work, the city said.
The second phase of the project will include repaving from Diversey to Oak Street Beach, according to the city. There is no word on when that work might begin.
Chicago's lakefront trail sees thousands of users each year and serves many purposes: as a running and biking trail, as a path for tourists and sightseerers and even as a people mover of sorts.
The trail is also at the mercy of Mother Nature, as storms and high waves cause damage almost annually.
"Our park trails are heavily utilized and it is crucial to maintain these areas because they are not only used for recreation but as transit options for many," Jesse Ruiz, Chicago Park District Board president, said in a statement.
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