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November 1, 2000

Governor Ryan Awards $2 Million Open Land Trust Grant to Champaign County Forest Preserve District

MAHOMET -- Governor George H. Ryan today awarded a $2 million grant through the Open Land Trust program to the Champaign County Forest Preserve District to acquire 358 acres of scenic Sangamon River corridor floodplain containing two large lakes southwest of Mahomet in Champaign County.

The site development plan includes interpretive trails, a Sangamon River canoe access, a boat ramp and fishing pier on the 135-acre Sunset Lake, and conversion of part of the 30-acre Shadow Lake into a wetland.

Governor Ryan's Open Land Trust initiative, the largest land acquisition program in state history, is providing $160 million over four years for land purchases and improvements to protect the state's most precious natural resources.

The project is one of eight in Champaign, Clark, Douglas, Fayette, Macon and Sangamon counties totaling more than $17 million being awarded grants by the Governor today.

Ryan is awarding grants for 23 projects totaling $20.3 million in central and southern Illinois as part of the Open Land Trust, state bicycle path grant and Illinois Transportation Enhancement programs.

"All of the environmental projects we have announced in the past week are intended to make communities more livable and vibrant by developing more natural areas, greenways, wildlife habitat and outdoor spaces through recreational trails, parklands and alternative transportation facilities," Ryan said. "Enhancing the quality of life for Illinois citizens is a high priority for me, and these projects are doing just that."

Governor Ryan has traveled to six different communities to announce regional environmental grants funded through the Open Lands Trust, The Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program, and the Bicycle path and trails grant.

Bicycle path and trails grants are funded through two related programs. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (DNR) administers the state's bicycle path grant program.

The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) administers the Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program, a federally funded program providing bike paths, pedestrian trails and other projects that offer transportation options other than traditional highway and mass transit facilities.

Other grants announced by Ryan in central and southern Illinois today include:

  • St. Clair County (OLT),
    $150,000, to acquire 98 acres three miles southwest of Mascoutah at the intersection of Brickyard and Groedeon Roads. The site is adjacent to Silver Creek and contains bottomland hardwood swamp, emergent marsh and scrub-shrub wetland and was targeted by the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory as a Grade A area. Initial development includes wetland restoration, an interpretive kiosk, a loop hiking trail and boardwalk and parking.

  • City of Eldorado (DNR),
    $25,000, to acquire 2.2 miles of the former CSX rail corridor from Ill. Rt. 142 to Borland Road.

  • Madison County Transit District (DNR),
    $200,000, to construct a 7-mile bicycle path from Union Street in Edwardsville west to Wanda Road.

  • Madison County Transit District (DNR),
    $200,000, to develop the first segment of the 15-mile Schoolhouse Trail, from Ill. Rt. 203 east to Ill. Rt. 162.

  • Springfield Park District (DNR),
    $55,000, to construct a 2.5-mile trail from the corner of Stanford Avenue and Fox Bridge Road to the Lost Bridge Trail.

  • Illinois Department of Transportation District 5 (IDOT),
    $448,000 to construct new paved shoulders on Illinois 133 from Chesterville to U.S. 45 in Arcola.

  • City of Champaign (IDOT),
    $200,000 to improve the Illinois Terminal entryway viaducts including lighting and sidewalks at Main Street, University Avenue, Chester Street and Logan Street.

  • City of Marshall (IDOT),
    $400,000 to renovate the downtown streetscape including sidewalks, lighting and landscaping at various locations on Michigan Avenue, Archer Avenue, 5th Street, 6th Street and Locust Street.

  • City of Mt. Zion (IDOT),
    $745,000 to construct a 2-mile bike trail along various right-of-way from Goodwin Park to Spitler Woods State Park and connecting to the Grade School.

  • City of Springfield (IDOT),
    $11,520,000 to rehabilitate the Historic Union Station and improve the streetscape including parking, landscaping and sidewalks at Madison Street from 5th Street to 6th Street.

  • City of Mt. Carmel (IDOT),
    $176,000 to construct a 1.4-mile bike path along Oak Street from 9th Street to College Drive and along Poplar Street from Oak Street to 13th Street.

  • City of Vandalia (IDOT),
    $1,709,000 to restore the historic brick streets and improve the streetscape along Gallatin Street from 3rd Street to 7th Street. An additional $150,000 in Illinois FIRST funds have been secured by Rep. Kurt Granberg (D-Carlyle) for this project.

  • Illinois Department of Transportation District 8 (IDOT),
    $428,000 to rehabilitate the Historic Little Mary's River Covered Bridge along Illinois 150 north of Chester.

  • Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville (IDOT),
    $130,000 to construct a 2.8-mile bike trail connecting the Vadalabene Nature Trail to the campus.

  • City of Belleville (IDOT),
    $580,000 to improve the streetscape including lighting, sidewalks and landscaping along North Charles Street from East Main Street to Scheel Street and along Scheel Street from Charles Street to Benton Street.

  • City of Collinsville (IDOT),
    $422,000 to improve the downtown streetscape including lighting, landscaping and sidewalks along Main Street from Combs Avenue to Vandalia Street.

  • City of Edwardsville (IDOT),
    $158,000 to rehabilitate the Historic Nickel Plate Station including fencing on LeClaire Street.

  • Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville (IDOT),
    $305,000 to improve the streetscape including landscaping, lighting, sidewalks and fencing along South 6th Street from Walnut Street to Railroad Avenue and Railroad Avenue from 6th Street to 5th Street.

  • Village of Wood River (IDOT),
    $74,000 to improve the streetscape with landscaping along Illinois 3, Illinois 111 and Illinois 143 at various locations.

  • City of Carterville (IDOT),
    $118,000 to construct a 1.02-mile bike trail along Greenbrier Road from Grand Avenue to Illinois 13.

  • City of Golconda (IDOT), $195,000 to rehabilitate Powerhouse building along Levee Road on the Ohio River for use as an interpretative/visitors center for the Ohio River Scenic Byway.

  • City of Harrisburg (IDOT),
    $114,000 to construct a 1-mile bike trail along Feazel Street form U.S. 45 to Barnett Street and along Small Street from Sahara Street to Veterans Drive connecting to existing Harrisburg Bike Trail and the Tunnel Hill State Trail.


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