The Department of Natural Resources, the Town of Burns Harbor and the City of Portage announced the opening of a newly completed segment of the Marquette Greenway in Burns Harbor. An upcoming Portage project will extend the trail west through a portion of Indiana Dunes National Park.
The 1.5-mile asphalt multi-use trail in Burns Harbor was made possible with funding from a Next Level Trails (NLT) grant, covering approximately 70 percent of the total cost.
The project helps close a gap in the Marquette Greenway system, a planned 50-mile multi-state trail that would connect Chicago to New Buffalo, Michigan along the southern shore of Lake Michigan. The Burns Harbor project extends the trail west from the intersection of State Road 149 and Haglund Road to the town’s border with the City of Portage and is built on property donated by Cleveland Cliffs (formerly ArcelorMittal). The project includes a pedestrian crossing at S.R. 149 and a trailhead with parking at Navajo Trail in Burns Harbor.
A second-round NLT award of $2,549,300 to the City of Portage Redevelopment Commission will be used to add 0.88 miles of trail that will extend the Burns Harbor project west through a portion of Indiana Dunes National Park to connect with a trail that is under construction at the Ameriplex development in Portage. The Portage project includes boardwalk through wetlands inside the national park and a pedestrian bridge over Salt Creek.
A ceremonial check was presented to Portage Mayor Sue Lynch for the project.
To date, NLT has awarded nearly $55 million to 35 projects statewide to develop more than 100 miles of new trail. Including the Marquette Greenway in Burns Harbor, five projects are complete, with 9.2 miles of trail open to the public.
More information about the NLT program can be found at on.IN.gov/NextLevelTrails.