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Messages - bobclay99

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California / Re: NBRS 70 Barstow to the Coast
« on: September 13, 2009, 02:00:08 pm »
I was intererested by your comment about Route 66.  Any effort out that way to establish a Route 66 Bike Trail?  Any highway Route 66 tourist info?  In Illinois we are making progress.  League of IL Bicyclists has laid out a Route with map and turn by turn directions from Chicago to St. Louis.  Part of this route uses the old Route 66 pavement.  Several towns have bike trails near or on the Old Route 66.

I tend to agree with the suggested change.  It is always difficult to get the process started and slow moving governments usually are not excited as individuals striving to get the routes established.  Once an individual can start the process, municipalities can be invited to join to give public sanction to the effort.

Corridor 66 Implementation / Re: Route 66 in IL and beyond!
« on: September 03, 2009, 01:16:52 am »
Route 66 Bike ride came to Bloomington Normal IL on Monday.  At a news conference, we heard from the two mayors and a state representative speak of the advantages of trails especially the Route 66 Bike path.

Below is newspaper article of the event.

Route 66 riders urge construction of bike trail
Story Discussion By Scott Richardson | | Posted: Monday, August 31, 2009 4:10 pm | (2) Comments

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Related: MyPantagraph: Constitution Trailblazers Group
BLOOMINGTON -- Bicyclists are getting their kicks on Route 66 this week.

Thirty to 50 people each day began riding bikes from the old Chain of Rocks bridge in Granite City to urge construction of a bike path along the historic roadway.

The 375-mile trek, sponsored by the League of Illinois Bicyclists and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, ends Thursday in Chicago.

After pedaling into Bloomington late Monday afternoon, cyclists were scheduled to spend the night after hearing Greg Koos of the McLean County Museum of History speak on the highway's importance. The journey will continue Tuesday through Pontiac and Dwight.

The cyclists are following the Route 66 bike path as it exists now, a collage of rural roads near the highway as well as parts of the road itself.

Their goal is to promote efforts to build the Route 66 Trail, a paved bike path running the length of the highway's right-of-way across the state. About 25 miles are completed, according to League of Illinois Bicyclists vice president Doug Oehler of Bloomington. A majority of those lie in McLean County in Towanda, Chenoa and Lexington.

Oehler and McLean County assistant county administrator Bill Wasson said the county, Bloomington and Normal are awaiting word on a federal grant to fund 80 percent of the path's construction from Bloomington to Funks Grove. The communities and the county would provide the rest. Both men said the international tourist interest and the potential recreational opportunities justify the investment.

"It's such an American icon," said Oehler.

"We believe the improvements will increase both the safety and recreational opportunities available to people interested in walking or biking along the Route 66 corridor," Wasson added.

On the Net:

I was intererested by your comment about Route 66.  Any effort out that way to establish a Route 66 Bike Trail?  In Illinois we are making progress.  League of IL Bicyclists has laid out a Route with map and turn by turn directions from Chicago to St. Louis.  Part of this route uses the old Route 66 pavement.  Several towns have bike trails near or on the Old Route 66.

Corridor 66 Implementation / Re: Route 66 in IL and beyond!
« on: August 18, 2009, 02:33:28 pm »
Following editorial appeared in today’s (Tuesday Aug 18) Bloomington Normal’ Pantagraph Newspaper.  It can be seen on

It is nice support for the route and mentioned the Rt 66 Bike Ride later this month.

Bob Clay


Smart to plan for bike path tied to Mother Road

By The Pantagraph Editorial Board | Posted: Tuesday, August 18, 2009 12:00 am | No Comments Posted

A day after the Normal City Council approved a bicycle-pedestrian master plan for the town, the McLean County Board approved an engineering contract for a section of a proposed Route 66 bikeway.

The two actions were not related - but they share a similar commitment to encouraging people to travel by bicycle. Ten years ago this September, an intergovernmental agreement was reached to share costs and planning for a Route 66 bikeway from Chenoa to McLean.

There are already short segments, some using pavement from abandoned portions of Route 66, in Chenoa, Lexington and Towanda.

In voting to approve the engineering contract, McLean County Board member Bette Rackauskas said that despite the tough economic times - and because of them - it is worthwhile to provide free entertainment for residents.

But this 3.75-mile segment would be part of a project that goes well beyond entertainment or recreation for local residents. The segment from west Bloomington to Shirley would be part of a proposed 370-mile Route 66 Bikeway that would stretch through Illinois from Chicago to St. Louis.

It closely follows the route of the "Mother Road" that was replaced by Interstate 55 for highway travelers but never replaced in the hearts of many.

There already is a route map developed through a joint effort of the League of Illinois Bicyclists, Illinois Department of Natural Resources and others. It includes turn-by-turn directions for a 122-mile ride from Dwight to Lincoln that also lists attractions, such as Pontiac's Route 66 Museum and Funks Grove Maple Sirup.

Long-distance bike trails are big tourist draws in Wisconsin, Missouri and elsewhere. Illinois lags behind these states in making use of this asset. Combining the popularity of bike trails with the international attraction of old Route 66 gives this project a two-pronged hook.

This might not be the right time to spend a lot of money on such a project, but planning should continue so it's ready to go when money is available.

Normal's bicycle-pedestrian master plan notes the "tremendous potential for the Town to realize the extensive recreational and economic benefits of bicycling" by being part of the Route 66 Bikeway.

Even without the bikeway completed, the route is attracting users. The League of Illinois Bicyclists is once again coordinating a trail ride along the route. Taking place Aug. 29 to Sept. 3, its purpose is to publicize and promote development of the trail.

Don't take this area's links to the Route 66 for granted. Appreciate the potential it offers for recreation and tourism. On the Web More details about the trail ride and maps of the route are available at League of Illinois Bicyclists' Web site:



It should be noted that the Great River Trail (Missisippi River) connects the Western Side of these routes from Rock Island IL (Dubuque area) to Galena, IL.  As part of the Grand Illinois Trail these corridors with many miles already off road should be considered for US Bike Route Status.

I saw some more good news today.  I was driving on Old Route 66 from Bloomington to Pontiac as I like drive by the bike paths and think of the entire Route 66 having a Bike Route.  There is construction happening in CHENOA for a New Bike Trail!!!  :)    There was an announcement from September 2007 there was a federal grant awarded for it back then.  I had wondered what had happened regarding that grant, but now there is actual construction.   It is supposed to be about 3 miles long.  I would not be surprised if it was completed before winter.  This means we will now have Bike Paths in the following McLean County communities that are part of the Route 66 Bike Trail:  Bloomington,  Normal, Towanda, Lexington & Chenoa.

Corridor 66 Implementation / Re: Route 66 in IL and beyond!
« on: August 13, 2009, 12:51:16 am »
The League of IL Bicylists with others did a great job detailing the route.  See for the route information.  The next step is still rather uncertain at this stage.  See the discussion at the thread "Process to approve a route for a Corridor"  in the Corridor Plan Updates & Routing Within Corridors.  The State Department of Transportation has final authority to submit a proposed route.  The discussion about the process is the best way to convince the DOT that there is public support for the route and no political problems will result from them approving it.  Some suggest forming a Route Committee from communities along the route.  In this area (Central Illinois) there is strong support as Route 66 is already generating tourism spending.  Pontiac, IL even has a Route 66 musuem that draws European visitors.

Corridor 66 Implementation / Re: Route 66 in IL and beyond!
« on: July 24, 2009, 02:53:47 am »
The McLean County Board in Illinois just approved an engineering contract for a 3 mile stretch of the route 66 Bikeway.  McLean County is hopefully the project will become "shovel ready" to attract Federal grant money for the $1.75 Million estimated construction cost.  The route would run from west Bloomington to Shirley, Illinois.  This is the first phase of a 5 phase plan in the County for the Route 66 Bikeway.  the muncipalities of Bloomington & Normal have recently adopted plans to extend the Constitution Trail some sections of which form part of the Route 66 Bikeway.

Robert you make some good points.  I wonder if the southern loop of the Grand Illinois Trail is really what was in mind for US 40.  It does pass through the Quad Cities.  Much of that route is already off road.  Perhaps the scale of the map was such that to show the corridors distinctly they made it appear farther south.  Regarding your Rockford to  Madison suggestion there is an alternative on the map.  US 66 must surely go through Springfield, not Decatur (although you are right it is not shown that way on the map.  THe IDNR, IDOT & LIB have a detailed Bike Route 66 showing a route close & sometimes on the Historic Highway 66.  This does go thru Springfield.  Aug 29-Sept 3 there is a pubicity ride promoting this route.  See for details.  Does anyone know of a more detailed definition of the proposed corridors?

Corridor 66 Implementation / Re: Route 66 in IL and beyond!
« on: May 24, 2009, 02:17:21 am »
The IL Dept of Natural Resources, League of Illinos Bicyclists and Illinois Trails Conservancy are planning a Media Ride on the Route 66 Trail Aug 29-Sept 3.  The purpose is to promote the Route 66 Bike route at various cities & towns along the route.  McLean County has been in the forefront of this effort.  Towanda and Lexington have bike paths several miles long established on Route 66 right of way.  Chenoa has received a federal grant for a similar path.  Normal has put an extension of the Route on its Bike plan with 5 miles of the Route 66 already constructed as part of the local Constitution Trail.  Bloomington has just voted a $1.6 Million extension to the Route.  McLean County has a long term 5 phase plan for a trail extending southward from Bloomington as part of Route 66.  There is a lot of momentum for this route especially with the tourism benefits associated with Route 66.

Bob Clay

Corridor 66 Implementation / Route 66 in IL and beyond!
« on: April 30, 2009, 02:18:37 am »
The town of Normal, IL held a public meeting announcing their proposed Bike/Pedestrian Plan on Tuesday.  There was a good group citizens (30 or so) who got to hear from the Mayor and the Consultant they hired to prepare the plan.  It was very encouraging to hear from people who wanted to promote bike and pedestrian travel.  They will be putting the draft plan on the town’s web site, in a couple of weeks.  They also were asking for public comments and suggestions.   They are serious about the issue as evidenced by spending $50,000 consultant fee for the plan.  That is quite a bit of money for the town of 50,000 population.


At the meeting I met Don & Sharon A Mcginnis from the Friends of the Constitution Trail (Bloomington-Normal’s trail system).  I spoke to them about the Route 66 Bike Route.  They said Normal was attempting to get grants for part of the route.  They also said McLean County was active in grant seeking for Route 66 projects.  The Bloomington City Council had just voted Monday to spend over $600,000 on an extension southward of the main north-south branch of the Constitution Trail.  The federal government  had awarded a $1,000,000 grant for the $1.6 million project in previous years.  This extension will take the main north-south segment to just a few blocks from a long trail segment heading west.  This extension would be a part of the Bike Route 66.


All in all it was very encouraging to see signs of progress at the local level.  I think they are getting excited enough that grant applications will  be matched locally to enable continued progress as the federal funding grows.


Be A Volunteer and Build Alliances / Re: Intro Thread
« on: April 05, 2009, 08:11:48 pm »
I am very interested in the Route 66 Corridor especially in Illinois.  There is a route laid out already with web map and segment by segment identification.  It seems to be an ideal route to obtain the US identification.  Their key requirement seems to be the link of the route between 2 states.  I think that the route already shows the link over the Chain of Rocks Bridge over the Missisippi River between Illinois & Missouri.  I think it would be great to get the route designated.  We could start signing some parts that are already on trails to build support for completing the route.  Any thoughts on how to proceed?

Bob Clay

This thread is for people to introduce themselves and voice their interest in the establishment of a U.S. Bicycle Route System (USBRS) – a network of bicycle routes that connect urban, suburban, and rural communities across the nation (and some day the continent). This forum is open to Adventure Cycling members and non-members alike. Background and news about the USBRS is posted at

AASHTO American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials;
DOT Department of Transportation;
ADT Average Daily Traffic;
FHWA Federal Highway Administration;
MPO Metropolitan Planning Organization;
MTA Metropolitan Transportation Authority;
MUTCD Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices;
NPTS National Personal Transportation Survey;
RTP Regional Transportation Plan;
SAFETEA-LU Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users;
SR2S Safe Routes to School;
TCGD Technical Committee on Geometric Design (responsible for “AASHTO Guide for the Development of Bicycle Facilities);
USDOT United States Department of Transportation.

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