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$5.3 Million grant awarded to Veterans Memorial Trail Project

A new 3.5-mile section of Veterans Memorial Trail will become a reality thanks to a $5.3 million federal grant

The paved trail section will be built in Homer Township from 159th Street, just east of Interstate 355, south to Hadley Valley preserve. Construction could begin sometime in 2020.

The northern section of the new trail segment will connect to a path the Illinois Department of Transportation is building along the north side of 159th Street from I-355 east to Route 45. The southern section of the new Veterans Memorial Trail segment will connect to the Forest Preserve's Spring Creek Greenway Trail.

The Transportation Alternatives Program grant was allocated recently by the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning as part of $475 million in federal funds awarded to 70 transportation improvement projects throughout the region.

The grant will pay for 80 percent of the Veterans Memorial Trail extension. The City of Lockport is contributing $575,000 for the project, which will help the Forest Preserve pay its 20 percent grant match.

"The city recently completed its Bike Path Master Plan Survey and the Veterans Memorial Trail is a huge part of that plan," said City Manager Ben Benson. "We're really looking forward to this new trail extension."

The trail segment is a critical link in a collaborative effort by the Forest Preserve and its partners to build out Will County's regional trail system, said Ralph Schultz, the District's chief operating officer.

"Connections like these offer true nonmotorized alternatives that clean our air and offer healthy options for travel between our homes, businesses and natural areas," he added. "We look forward to working with others to continue to expand the Veterans Memorial Trail in the future and provide additional opportunities and connections within our communities."


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