The Chainlink

BUCKTOWN — A freshman alderman wants to extend The 606's Bloomingdale Traileastward — under the Kennedy Expressway and over the Chicago River — through the former Finkl steel mill site.

"Spanning two obstacles, a river and an expressway, will certainly be a big ticket item. If you look at the amount of time that it took from conception to reality [to build the first part of The 606], it suggests that we need to continue talking about the extension," Ald. Brian Hopkins (2nd) said.

The former Finkl site between the river and Clybourn Avenue is considered one of the biggest redevelopment opportunities in the c... Hopkins would like to extend the trail east to Kingsbury Street, along the eastern bank of the river.

Earlier this month, Hopkins showcased a rendering of the plan at a City Club luncheonas part of a presentation about infrastructure in his ward. Hopkins said he would like to incorporate the extension of the trail into the infrastructure plan for the Clybou...

"There was considerable support for a 606 extension. I have not talked with anyone who thinks it's a bad idea," Hopkins said.

Full story: https://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20160531/bucktown/extend-606-under-...

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Ald. Hopkins was a bike commuter. Properly developing the Finkle site is a huge priority.

It's nice to know that it is still being considered. A map from 2011 had me believing it was going to go all the way over.

I guess it's the original line which used to join the railroad. The trail extension would need to cross the highway, river and the railroad. I suppose the Finkle area will develop along with Goose Island, which doesn't seem to have any more rail service going to it. If the 606 was a little wider it would make a great commuter corridor to reach Clybourn. As someone mentioned Cortland is still a bit grim for biking.

I do wonder how contaminated those areas are, Goose Island in particular.

Cortland is such a sh*thole now with fast car traffic.  With this extension, families would be able to ride from Lincoln Park to Humboldt Park (and vice-versa).  That would be great for the city.

I like the idea of extending the 606.

Under the expressway is not as much as a problem as crossing the Metra tracks that lie between the expressway and Elston.

Even though it's almost always very crowded with foot traffic (not that that's a problem!) I really enjoy the 606. It's not useful to me because it doesn't really go anywhere, but I ride its short length with some frequency regardless. I think that extending it could really lend the trail some utility, because as the article said it's currently a case of getting off at Ashland and wondering "well now what?"

Oh, and getting priority for bike-firendly development of the Finkle site would be huge.

The worst problem with bicycle routes in Chicago is connectivity.  We have lots of nice, quiet, side streets.  We have some good PBLs.  But we also have a lot of barriers - especially expressway and river crossings.  These barriers are the big problem we have to address.  Extending the 606 would really be a big move in the right direction.

Dare to dream of it extending further west? 

A fantastic idea and wonderful piece of infrastructure that can be included in future development of the Finkle parcel. Finding the money of course will be the biggest obstacle as the freeway, railroad and river all create costly engineering issues.

Here is where the Bloomingdale RR used to cross over 16 foot over Ashland and under the interstate.

 https://www.google.com/maps/place/Cortland+%26+Ashland/@41.9143223,...

Should give you enough clearance to get over the Metra lines on the other side and leads straight to the crossing over the river.  Once over the river, you either join Cortland or go through a metal recycling yard to Kingsbury then to Clifton to Clybourn.

 https://www.google.com/maps/place/Cortland+%26+Ashland/@41.9147933,...

There is no "e" in Finkl.

As a wheelchair bike user, the 606 improves safety quite a bit by removing me from sidewalk/street traffic. Getting to the Sheffield purple line would be much safer if I could avoid the Kennedy and the bridge.

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