Indian Creek Trail Bridge (Aurora)

Concrete Arch Bridge over Indian Creek
Aurora, Kane County, Illinois

Click the Photo Above to See All Photos of This Bridge!
Name Indian Creek Trail Bridge (Aurora)
Built By Aurora, Elgin & Chicago Railway
Contractor Unknown
Currently Owned By Kane County
Length 36 Feet Total, 18 Foot Spans
Width 1 Track
Height Above Ground 10 Feet (Estimated)
Superstructure Type Concrete Arch
Substructure Type Concrete
Date Built 1902
Traffic Count 0 Trains/Day (Bridge is a Trail)
Current Status Rails to Trails
Significance Local Significance
Documentation Date January 2022
In 1899, the Elgin & Chicago Railway began construction of a new line between Wheaton, Illinois and Elgin, Illiois.
The E&C would never see the completion of the line, and instead would be absorbed into the Aurora, Elgin & Chicago Railroad.
The railroad officially opened for service in 1903. The track was a third rail type, making it electrified.
During the same time, branches would be completed to Aurora, Batavia and Elgin. In 1909, a fourth branch would be completed to Geneva.
The line would become part of the Chicago, Aurora & Elgin Railroad (later railway) in 1922.
By 1947, the newly formed Chicago Transit Authority took over the rapid transit system. With the CTA in control, much of the system was in limbo. A majority of it was to be replaced with buses and other mass transit.
In addition, as the suburbs grew west following World War II, new highways would be built reducing the need for railroads.
In 1957, the CA&E suspended all passenger service, and would suspend all freight service in 1959.
The CA&E would be abandoned in 1961. Two years later, the counties of Cook, DuPage and Kane purchased the right of way and began developing the Illinois Prairie Path.
Today, much of the system west of Maywood is part of the Illinois Prairie Path, including all four suburban branches.

View an article regarding the construction of this route.

Located near Farnsworth Avenue in Aurora, this concrete arch bridge carries the Illinois Prairie Path over Indian Creek.
Built in 1902, the bridge consists of two concrete arch spans, set onto concrete substructures. Of the numerous concrete arch bridges on the former CA&E railroad, this is one of the largest.

Historic Photo
Historic photo of the bridge from Street Railway Review; August 20th, 1902

Fortunately, this bridge was preserved for reuse as the Illinois Prairie Path. The arches follow a typical design, using a semicircular shape.
Overall, the bridge appears to be in fair condition, with some cracking seen throughout the structure.

The author has ranked the bridge as being locally significant, due to the common design.
The photo above is an overview.


Source Type


Build Date Construction of line
Railroad Line History Source ICC Valuation Information, Compiled by Richard S. Steele

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