Ride Illinois, the statewide advocacy organization for cyclists and bicycle safety, has honored the city of Aurora for its dedication to outstanding bikeway infrastructure with the 2016 Ride Illinois Project Award.
Announced at the 2016 Illinois Bike Summit last week in Normal, IL, the Ride Illinois Project Award recognizes the city of Aurora for the installation of the dedicated bike lanes in downtown Aurora that connect the last remaining half-mile-long trail gap on the Fox River Trail.
The Fox River Trail now spans more than 60 miles from Oswego all the way north near Wisconsin. The closing of the gap with this new dedicated lane has since provided both quality of life and economic benefit to downtown Aurora, inviting cyclists into the downtown safely.
“Protected bike lanes are for more than just Chicago and directly adjacent suburbs,” said Ed Barsotti, Chief Programs Officer of Ride Illinois. “We’re thrilled to see the bold leap forward in Aurora’s bikeway infrastructure and to recognize this transformative project. It’s also smart policy, as Illinois’ second-largest city, like many others, seeks to attract businesses and a young workforce.”
In bestowing the award, Ride Illinois officials said that the new curb-protected bike lane provided a level of comfort for cyclists consistent with the rest of the Fox River Trail and was an innovative project featuring the green pavement, bike-only traffic signals, concrete curbing, brick stamping and more. The bikeway provides an off-road trail experience as well as access to new and existing businesses along its length.
“The closing of the Fox River Trail gap was something we worked long and hard for because we knew it would benefit not just bicyclists, but our residents and businesses as well,” said Mayor Weisner. “We are honored by this award that recognizes Aurora’s dedication to being a bike-friendly destination.”
The dedicated bike lane was part of a complete street makeover of south River Street that also included reconfiguring a former one-way street into a two-way thoroughfare with parking and landscaping designed to highlight recent development, including the beautiful new Santori Public Library of Aurora.
SOURCE: city of Aurora news release