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updated: 2/18/2013 7:48 AM

Rockford studying ways to convert rails to trails

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Associated Press

ROCKFORD -- Rockford officials want to transform rarely used and abandoned railroad tracks into bicycle trails.

The Rockford Register Star reports ( the northern Illinois city is spending $88,000 on a rail consolidation study.

An engineering firm will take an inventory of all rail crossings and determine where obsolete crossings may be removed.

That land could be used for bike and recreation paths.

Richard Bowers is past president of Blackhawk Bicycle and Ski Club. He says replacing old tracks with bike paths would provider a safer route for commuters and families, and more people would likely bike to work rather than drive.

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