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Illinois and Michigan Canal National Heritage Corridor

Category: Parks
General Info
200 W. Tenth., #1-SE
(815) 588 8604

The Illinois & Michigan Canal, completed in 1848, connected the Great Lakes to the Mississippi River watershed along a longstanding Indian portage route. The 97-mile canal extended from the Chicago River near Lake Michigan to the Illinois River at Peru, Illinois. It rapidly transformed Chicago from a small settlement to a critical transportation hub between the East and the developing Midwest. The towpath trail along the canal is a State park that runs through a rural and wooded landscape linking a number of towns laid out by the original canal commission.



Both of Chicago's major airports (O'Hare and Midway) are served by numerous airlines.


Five interstates (39, 55, 80, 355, and 294) run through or bisect the Corridor.

Public Transportation

Pace Suburban Bus Service (847) 364-7223 operates between Midway Airport and Joliet, and the Chicago metropolitan region. METRA (Metropolitan Rail) (312) 322-6777 operates two lines between Chicago and Joliet: the Heritage Corridor and the Rock Island. Amtrak (1-800-USA-RAIL) has stops in Chicago (Union Station), Summit and Joliet.