New railfan park to be constructed in Chicago suburb

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PARK FOREST, Ill. – A new railfan park is scheduled to open along the Canadian National in Park Forest this summer, the Chicago Sun-Times has reported. The park, at Homan Avenue and North Street, will feature a 35-foot high platform that will look out over the junction of the CN’s former Illinois Central main line, CN’s ex-Elgin, Joliet & Eastern line, and the Metra Electric commuter line.

A 500-foot long, wheelchair-accessible ramp will lead up to the platform, and CN will donate a caboose for display, Park Forest village parks Supt. Rob Gunther said.

A trail from the ramp will connect to nearby Holden Park and to the Old Plank Road Trail. Signs and displays in the park will explain the role of railroads in the development of the Chicago area and tell the story behind the trail and the rail junction. The site will also feature a large mural and plants that would have been seen by people traveling through the area by rail during the 1890s, officials said.

The land for the park was donated by CN as part of a $7.3 million settlement with Park Forest when the railroad bought the EJ&E in 2009. Money from the settlement will help pay for the park.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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