Mount Prospect inches forward with proposed pedestrian bridge linking Melas, Meadows parks
Mount Prospect is moving forward with its proposal for a pedestrian bridge across Northwest Highway to link Meadows and Melas parks, and officials are seeking public input on the plan so far.
The proposed bridge would span from the northeast corner of Melas Park -- crossing over the Union Pacific Northwest Line railroad tracks and a four-lane stretch of Northwest Highway -- to the southwest corner of Meadows Park.
Mount Prospect Public Works Director Sean Dorsey said the bridge would provide a safe and convenient Northwest Highway crossing for pedestrians and bicyclists, in particular students traveling to and from Prospect High School. There are two miles between the nearest safe crossings along the road, he added.
The proposed design calls for a single-span steel truss bridge more than 23 feet above the railroad tracks and roadway. Looping ramps would be built on the approaches at both ends.
Residents can watch a video presentation on the bridge at https://youtu.be/fJ_QoZgvXog and read more on the project and see renderings at https://tinyurl.com/dvzfe874.Input on the plan can be shared through an online survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Y2XJLYV.
A timeline presented by Dorsey this week calls for preliminary engineering approval from the Illinois Department of Transportation by the fall, design engineering in 2022 and construction in 2023 and 2024. Constructions costs have not yet been determined, but the village has spent more than $124,000 so far for engineering work, half of that covered by a Cook County grant.
Village board members had varied reactions to Dorsey's presentation Tuesday.
"If I was a bike rider, this would be really exciting, because (the ramp) is kind of like a roller coaster," Trustee Richard Rogers said. "But if I had to walk it, I would walk (directly) across Northwest Highway and over the railroad tracks."
However, Trustee Peggy Pissarreck, who lives near Melas Park, said she is excited about the project.
"I do think that it will be very well received, not only in my neighborhood, but on the other side of the highway," she said.