Bloomingdale Line or also known as 606 (The 606 Park and Trail) is an elevated urban trail in Chicago. It was made by replacing elevated railroad tracks with a path for bicyclists, walkers and runners.
The trail is on Chicago's Northwest Side, at Bloomingdale Ave (1800N), between Armitage and North. It is 2.7 miles long. It runs east and west. The eastern end is at Walsh Park, on Ashland Avenue (1600W). The park's western end will be at Ridgeway Trailhead (3750W), when Phase 2 is completed. The official opening was on June 6, 2015.
The first construction phase of the 606 was completed in 2015. It was developed by the City of Chicago, the city's park district and the Trust for Public Land. The name comes from the first three digits of Chicago's ZIP Code. "In its original state, it was the elevated Bloomingdale [train] Line, completed in 1915 along Bloomingdale Avenue...."
The trail is about 17.5 feet above street level at its highest point. Original retaining walls are on each side. The walls are filled with a subsoil from when the structure was first built. The ballast and railroad ties and trackes were removed in the conversion to a trail. On top of the subsoil are other soil layers. These were re-built as part of the conversion. On top of the soil is an 8-inch layer of concrete. This top layer is 14 feet wide. In the middle is a 10-foot wide section for bicyclists. On either side is a 2-foot shoulder for runners and walkers. Beyond the shoulders are planted areas with grass, trees and lighting. At some places, there are benches A fence or railing of varying height runs along the length of the path. There are 17 ramps and one staircase along the trail.
In 2016, the American Planning Association announced that the trail would win the association's 2016 National Planning Excellence Award for Urban Design.
Since its opening, the trail has had a lot of use by walkers, runners and bicyclists.  Local alderman Brian Hopkins the second has advocated extending the trail east across the North Branch of the Chicago River.
The trail has caused the price of houses that are near it to rise. This rise is much greater west of Western Avenue than east of that street.
Notes[change | change source]
- "City of Chicago :: Zoning Changes Will Reflect New Uses for The 606 and Adjacent Properties". www.chicago.gov.
- "City of Chicago :: Mayor Emanuel Announces The 606 Park And Trail To Open On – 6/06/15". www.chicago.gov.
- Vivanco, Vivianco. "606 Trail Scores Mixed Reviews," Chicago Tribune, June 5, 2016, Section 1, p. 12.
- Kamin, Blair, 2015, "A Novel Path Linking Old Neighborhoods," Chicago Tribune, May 31, pp. 1, 10, 11. Quotation from p. 10.
- Kamin, Blair, 2015, "A Novel Path Linking Old Neighborhoods," Chicago Tribune, May 31, pp. 1, 10, 11.
- Brzoznowski, Andrzej (April 5, 2016). "Hot on the trail". Redeye1. pp. 6–7.
- Marotti, Ally. "Housing Boom near 606 Often Unsettling," Chicago Tribune Business Section, pp. 1 and 3. November 1, 2016.