The 606 is finally open. Chicago's first elevated park is proving to be just as popular as anticipated. Even during off-peak hours, the path is filled with people who are overjoyed with the concept of converting a defunct railroad into a raised trail. Though it's been open for less than two weeks, one can already identify some stereotypical people along the 606. Here are six of them.
The dog-walker with an eight-foot leash: The 606 has become a magnet for dog owners within a four-block radius. The pooch people swarm onto the path, and many of them leave their hounds on a leash the length of the lane. There haven't been any noticeable poop problems on the 606 yet, though. Maybe the owners are just throwing their baggies over the rail and onto oncoming traffic.
The cop who's holding back a smile: Being assigned to the 606 seems like a dream job for a CPD beat cop. Most of the police officers on the 606 are on bicycles and look to be enjoying the path as much as anyone. They're usually holding back a smug grin so people are still intimidated. Fun fact: Most of the 606 is in the Shakespeare patrol district, which is the first police district in Chicago to test out body cameras.
The unattended child: Every quarter of a mile or so, there seems to be a small, unattended child rambling about the path while cyclists zip past. If the little tike's parents are nearby, they don't seem to be concerned. Either way, it's clear to see that the park is delightful for people of all ages.
The guy who thinks it's a bike path: The 606 is exciting for cyclists. It's a 2.7-mile stretch where one doesn't have to worry about being nailed by a car. But some people speed down the path like a bat out of hell, cursing at anyone in their way. These unfortunate souls don't understand that the 606 isn't wide or long enough to accommodate the sort of cycling that the Lakefront Trail provides.
The jogger having the time of her life: If there's one thing that the 606 is perfect for, it's going for a run. You'll find some of the city's most excited joggers on the path this summer grooving out to some tunes and sweating more than Jennifer Beals in Flashdance.
The battalion of strollers: Parents love the 606 almost as much as they love their children. When they head to the 606, they somehow always go in packs (I assume there's some sort of neighborhood conch shell). A standard group of strollers will take up the entire lane, sometimes spilling over into the other. This might be slightly inconvenient, but give them credit: Parenting is really difficult, and the 606 is really spectacular.
RECOMMENDED: A complete guide to the 606