The city's next exciting urban development project is happening right now in the Logan Square and surrounding Northwest neighborhoods of Chicago. The goal of the project, cleverly named The 606 for the common zip code beginning every Chicago neighborhood shares, is to connect Logan Square and its neighbors Humbolt Park, Bucktown, and Wicker Park. So how do you connect four neighborhoods and their parks? Well, an old rail line, of course.
Back in the 1990's, train traffic slowed on the historic Bloomingdale Line and left an abandoned train rail and not much green space for the residents of the area. The city brought together residents of the Logan Square, which at the time had the least amount of opens space per capita in Chicago, to put some ideas on the table on just what to do.
Their solution was to use the abandoned train line as a means of connecting neighborhoods with a bike trail and some greenery. The residents and the city wanted to put some open space and some green back on the Logan Square canvas. These neighbors formed Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail, whose mission became creating The 606. The Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail then reached out to The Trust for Public Land to move the project forward, who now serves as the Chicago Park District's project coordinator and is leading the fundraising campaign
Surrounding neighborhoods excitedly hopped on board and helped turn the idea for a park and trail system connecting all the neighborhoods into a reality.
So, let's jump into just what the 606 will include. So far, plans are to use the nearly three miles of unused rail of the Bloomingdale Trail to link five ground level parks of the various aforementioned neighborhoods. This will become a hot spot for bikers, runners, and strollers as they will have a beautiful and car free trail to use. When the park is complete, it will feature an observatory, skate-park, various art instillations, educational programming, and a variety of other amenities.
Most exciting is the new connection these unique and culturally diverse neighborhoods will now have with one another. This new connection will most likely lead to an increase in local business and help attract visitors from all over Chicago and beyond.