Yesterday morning, DNAinfo Chicago broke the news that the Chicago Lakefront Trail will be closed east of Lake Shore Drive between Diversey Parkway and North Avenue starting May 22nd, according to a statement from Mayor Rahm Emanuel's office.
The project which will make an effort to make the Lakefront Trail less congested by building a separate path for cyclists and runners was first announced in December following a 12 million dollar donation from Ken Griffin — Illinois' richest man and one of mayor Rahm Emanuel's biggest campaign donors.
Once complete, the split trail will provide separate paths for cyclists and pedestrians along the entire 18-mile pathway. The commuter trail, made of asphalt, will measure 12 feet in width and will be located closest to Lake Shore Drive. The pedestrian trail will measure 20 feet in width with 14 feet of asphalt and 6 feet of soft surface mix on either side.
"This is an important next step in continued efforts to make the Lakefront Trail safer and more accessible for thousands of cyclists, runners and walkers that use the path each day," Emanuel said in a statement.
While many runners and cyclists have expressed excitement and the need for the path separation, other runners are not happy with the unfortunate timing of the project's start date. With the Bank of America Chicago Marathon slated for October 8th, runners will be entering the busiest months of their training schedules and many are left wondering how they will adapt to the closure.
Chicago Area Runner's Association dug up the suggested detour from the Chicago Park District which can be viewed below.
The city did not mention how long the section of the path would be closed but trail users can track the process of the construction by visiting chicagoparkdistrict.com/lakefront-trail, officials said.
You can read the full press release here.