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Looking for opinions on this route

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Looking for opinions on this route

Old 03-02-07, 07:56 AM
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no motor?
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Looking for opinions on this route

https://www.bikely.com/maps/bike-path...of-Des-Plaines This is a proposed route for walkers/bicyclists in the town I practice in. I put it together for a health and medical care group I participate in, and we are trying to come up with a easily walked/pedaled route that will inspire people to come back and do more later. We're going to take the route, and ad in some information on some of the interesting sites along the way and some health information (you'd burn xx calories by walking the entire route, yy calories by pedaling). The town (Des Plaines IL) is an older suburb just outside of Chicago, and is notorious for being hard to drive through and congested many people avoid the area for those reasons. Im particularly interested in hearing how easy people think the route would be for novices and families to follow. Ive tried to run the route to avoid busier streets, cross with traffic signals etc to make it easier for them. Hows it look? What changes would you make?
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Old 03-03-07, 10:37 AM
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Looks good for walkers and joggers, especially for those that live in the area. But for bikers it may be too short except for parents with little kids. Maybe it can hook up with a longer route nearby?
People like milestones to see how far they've gone, maybe simple park benches to sit on occasionally to take in an especially nice view or quiet spot. Is that a possibility without being too expensive? Otherwise, is there decent parking nearby that won't tick off the residents in the neighborhood. For some reason, people get upset if somebody parks in front of their house.
Nice that you are doing something for the community there. Is it anywhere near Evanston? My dad grew up there in the 1920s and 30s and would get a kick out of hearing about it.
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Old 03-03-07, 12:00 PM
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It's really quite difficult to make a judgement without being there! I agree with sunday driver that it seems a bit short for most cyclists. Additionally, having to perhaps walk between points 77-90 is not something that most cyclists would want to do, especially if one is wearing cycling shoes. On the other hand, if you're talking about moms and dads out with the kids on bikes, it's probably all right.

How many rest facilities are available on the circuit? Seven miles odd is a bit far for some older people to walk without running into problems with needing to head for the bathroom, and you can't realistically expect the fast food joints along the way to be thrilled at providing walkers/joggers/cyclists with free facilities.

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Old 03-03-07, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by sunday driver
Looks good for walkers and joggers, especially for those that live in the area. But for bikers it may be too short except for parents with little kids. Maybe it can hook up with a longer route nearby?
People like milestones to see how far they've gone, maybe simple park benches to sit on occasionally to take in an especially nice view or quiet spot. Is that a possibility without being too expensive? Otherwise, is there decent parking nearby that won't tick off the residents in the neighborhood. For some reason, people get upset if somebody parks in front of their house.
Nice that you are doing something for the community there. Is it anywhere near Evanston? My dad grew up there in the 1920s and 30s and would get a kick out of hearing about it.
Thanks for the comments form both of you. This route probably won't be very exciting to the hard core roadies, but I'm still kind of new to bicycling and was looking for some feedback from some folks with more experience. I'm aiming this at the family/recreational types, as a way of getting them to get out of the house and exercise, but not necessarily complete the whole route in one setting. We're also trying to come up with enough interesting "stuff" for people to look at and come back and explore in more detail later. Kind of like a human powered version of the show "Wild Chicago" if you're familiar with that. Stops include the first franchised McDonalds, the oldest campground left from the chataqua days, the oldest house in town and other sites of local interest that I'm hoping people will want to visit on foot or bicycle that would make this a poor route for the hard core roadies. I picked the park district parking lot as the start/end point to provide ample public parking, public restrooms at both ends of the park and enough playground equipment (including bmx ramps) to provide plenty of enticement for the kids to want to come back later. The route also goes by a few of the public parks, and they have benches for resting. It also connects with a long stretch of single track that runs for miles along the river, and is about 3 blocks from a MUP that runs for about 5 more miles.
Des Plaines is close to Evanston; both are older suburbs just outside of Chicago. Evanston is due north, and Des Plaines is more northwest - just north of the airport. Both towns have narrower streets, and the narrow streets in the crowded downtown section don't leave a lot of room for families to bicycle which is why I suggested walking those parts. It could be easily done by commuters, but I don't want to scare off some of the inexperienced.
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Old 03-04-07, 03:41 PM
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It sounds as if you've thought this out quite well then. Narrow city streets can be quite intimidating to those not used to them, and you are correct, most parents would not want the children to ride in the streets if even the parents don't want to ride there! The only question I would have, is when the riders get off their bikes, have the attractions got anywhere to park the bikes safely?

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Old 03-05-07, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by East Hill
It sounds as if you've thought this out quite well then. Narrow city streets can be quite intimidating to those not used to them, and you are correct, most parents would not want the children to ride in the streets if even the parents don't want to ride there! The only question I would have, is when the riders get off their bikes, have the attractions got anywhere to park the bikes safely?

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There are bicycle racks at most of the stops (especially the beginning/end), some of the stops are interesting neighborhoods where I'm hoping that people will pause to look.
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