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updated: 10/11/2013 7:45 AM

Rail-trail planners buy up eastern Illinois land

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Associated Press

URBANA -- It's taken about 20 years, but planners now have a major piece of land they want to include in a nearly 25-mile recreational trail in eastern Illinois.

Dan Olson is executive director of the Champaign County Forest Preserve District. He tells The News-Gazette in Champaign that the district paid the CSX Corp. $600,000 last week for the Champaign County segment of the abandoned rail line that would become a trail.

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Planners hope to have the other piece of land in neighboring Vermilion County by the end of the year.

The Kickapoo Trail would follow the old rail line between Urbana and Kickapoo State Park near Danville.

Olson says planners will now start raising the roughly $11 million they need to do the rest of the work.

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