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After long wait, Prairie Trail bridge to open Thursday

Published: Monday, Oct. 21, 2013 2:12 p.m. CDT • Updated: Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2013 12:08 a.m. CDT
(Photo provided by McHenry County Conservation District)
The Prairie Trail bridge is being installed this week between Crystal Lake and Algonquin

ALGONQUIN – The Prairie Trail bridge – a section of the trail that connects Algonquin and Crystal Lake – is set to reopen Thursday, six months after its anticipated completion date.

The bridge is being lifted into place, and final landscaping adjustments will take place before it is open for cyclists and walkers Thursday morning, said Wendy Kummerer, McHenry County Conservation District communications manager.

“I think after a long, extended wait, the residents will be excited to have it open,” Kummerer said of the popular bike path that connects the northern Kane County border to Wisconsin. “It was great to hear the bridge was finally installed. It’s an important recreational amenity, and it’s received a lot of citizen interest in months it was closed.”

The bridge was removed in February, and construction on the new bridge was scheduled to be completed in April. But multiple contractor delays continued to push back the completion date. The original supplier never delivered the bridge to Copenhaver Construction firm, and the McHenry County Conservation District Board decided last month to hire another firm – Carmichael Construction – to finish the project.

Copenhaver Construction, a Gilberts-based firm, was paid $55,197 by the conservation district for preparation and site work. Marengo firm Carmichael Construction was paid $111,000 for the completion of the project.

Although the Prairie Trail bridge at Algonquin is near completion, cyclists and walkers still may experience trouble navigating the trail as construction continues on the Algonquin bypass. That section of the trail was closed Monday morning, and residents can expect occasional trail closures while construction of the bypass continues through fall 2014.

Updates on the project can be found at

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