The Illinos & Michigan Canal united the East Coast to the Gulf of Mexico with easier access as of 1848. According to Wikipedia, since 1964 eight engineered canal locks were designated a National Historic Landmark.
I’ve been getting to know this historic path extremely well since 2012. I documented a ride in September, 2012 that did not show any signs of a washout. I only documented aftermath of a fire that burned a field. And I have experienced and taken at least one decent bicycle ride via I&M Towpath that was washout-free. I remember this individual ride because of pictures and it was my contemplation process of ending a relationship. Without any detours or hazards, it was a free-thinking and relaxing ride.
In September the following (2013) year, was my next documentation of the I&M Canal. The towpath and I became close from then on. Ever since 2013 the same washout has been between Utica, IL and Ottawa, IL like one side is Mexico and the other the U.S with neither claiming the territory resulting in ultimate neglect..
There has been washouts along the Illinois & Michigan Canal, but have been fixed. There has been a near washout along the Hennepin Canal and even that has been fixed.
The most West part of the I&M Canal does contain a rich Irish and Polish heritage equalling a poor catholic culture with a life involved around hefty drinking and vices.
Furthermore, The I&M Canal provides immense opportunities for various activities from walking, running, adventurism and cycling. To pass the washout in and concludes risking injury, breaking the law, taking a high traffic road, and/or traveling extremely out of the way defeating the purpose of a worry free environment in which to roam.
I have heard IDNR has projected the project at a cost around $300,000.
Local businesses have offered to fund and construct permanent results only to be turned down. I’ve had about enough of this hazard/annoyance/apathy/lack-of-government-help
There has even been rumors of the BEAUTIFUL Starved Rock park to be promoted to a National Park. How is this neglect possible just outside of this unique beauty?
Just hoping for a miracle. Please share.