Illinois Department of Transportation—Connecting Communities through Innovation: The Kickapoo Rail Trail Bridge

The $3 million Kickapoo Rail Trail transformed unused infrastructure to connect communities while honoring the natural beauty of east central Illinois. A textbook rails-to-trails project, the KRT, as it is called locally, follows an abandoned railroad line more than 100 years old. The KRT is making positive impacts on the local transportation system, economy and environment. The goal to connect rural and urban communities via a regional trail system has been achieved, providing a safe, viable travel option among the region’s institutions and businesses. The trail project and the bridge component overseen by IDOT have put a spotlight on a part of the state that sometimes doesn’t receive a large amount of attention, helping to drive tourism. And by expanding green transportation options, the communities along the KRT are experiencing health and wellness benefits in new ways.