May 13, 2017

Lakefront Trail Separation Construction Continues from Fullerton to North Avenues and from Oak to Ohio Streets

Separate bike and pedestrian paths make the Lakefront Trail safer and more enjoyable for everyone in Chicago

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Chicago Park District Superintendent Michael P. Kelly and Kenneth Griffin today gathered to break ground on the next segments of the Lakefront Trail Separation project to separate bike and pedestrian paths. Construction will begin from Fullerton to North Avenues and from Oak to Ohio Streets. This project is made possible by a generous gift from Kenneth Griffin.

“This is an important next step in continued efforts to make the Lakefront Trail safer and more accessible for the thousands of cyclists, runners and walkers that use the path each day,” Mayor Emanuel said. “Trail separation does more than address issues of overcrowding; it builds a better future for one of the city’s greatest assets by ensuring Chicagoans and visitors are able to experience what the lakefront has to offer.”

The Lakefront Trail Separation was designed to alleviate areas of congestion by creating two distinct paths; a bike trail and a separate pedestrian trail for those on foot. Mayor Emanuel originally announced plans to separate the trail from Fullerton to Ohio streets and 31st to 51st streets when he unveiled Building on Burnham, a comprehensive vision to invest in Chicago's parks and open spaces.

“I am excited to see us taking another step forward towards making the Lakefront trail safer and more enjoyable for everyone in Chicago,” said Kenneth Griffin. “I appreciate all of the efforts that have gone into this great project and applaud Mayor Emanuel and Superintendent Kelly for their continued leadership.”

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.

"We have worked collectively with the City of Chicago, Active Transportation Alliance and Chicago Area Runners Association for years in search of ways to enhance the lakefront trail experience," said General Superintendent and CEO Michael P. Kelly. "We are fortunate to have the support of Mr. Griffin to bring the trail separation project to fruition."

Starting May 22, the Lakefront Trail will be closed east of Lake Shore Drive between Diversey and North Avenues for construction. Trail separation construction will take place from Oak to Ohio Streets, and space will be provided in a shared lane around active construction. Due to limitations on space in this section of the trail, the contractor will make every effort to limit the use of heavy equipment during busy morning and evening traffic.  A marked detour route west of Lake Shore Drive will be available to Lakefront Trail users.

Trail users can access construction information and detour maps by checking or following us on Facebook and Twitter construction updates.


The Chicago Park District is the 2014 Gold Medal Award winner, recognized for excellence in park and recreation management across the nation. For more information about the Chicago Park District's more than 8,300 acres of parkland, more than 585 parks, 26 miles of lakefront, 12 museums, two world-class conservatories, 16 historic lagoons, nearly 50 nature areas, thousands of special events, sports and entertaining programs, please visit or contact the Chicago Park District at 312/742.PLAY or 312/747.2001 (TTY). Want to share your talent? Volunteer in the parks by calling 312/742.PLAY.