Boneyard Restoration Project October/November Update!

Dear Friends –

Exciting updates on the progress of current Boneyard Creek Redevelopment this month!

The reconstruction of the Race Street Pavement from University Avenue to Griggs Street was completed and Race Street was opened to through traffic on October 23, 2013! Another significant milestone was the resurfacing and striping of Broadway Avenue between Water Street and University Avenue.

Additional work completed during October included: encasement of the trestle bridge piers; installation of storm sewer along the east side of the building at 208 Griggs Street; reconfiguration of storm sewer off the SE corner of the Race Street Bridge; modification of the railroad signals at the Race Street crossing; removal of creek side sheet pile; construction of the walls for the east trestle abutment; sheet pile driving for the walls south of the Norfolk Southern railroad culvert; installation of remaining panels for the wall along the south side of City Parking Lot 25; and pouring of the last two sections of the wall along the southwest edge of the project site. Work was started on the excavation for the precast panel wall bordering the west parking lot of the building at 221 Broadway Avenue and installation of streetscape band along Race Street.

Project work anticipated for November includes construction of: concrete faced walls adjacent to the Norfolk Southern railroad culvert; traffic signals at Race Street and University Avenue; decking for the trestle pedestrian bridge; steps down to the Boneyard creek off the SW corner of the Race Street Bridge; sidewalk along the east side of the building at 208 Griggs; remaining brick band on Race Street and Broadway Avenue; and manhole adjustments in the new Broadway Avenue pavement. Work will also begin on the site walls east of the Griggs Street culvert and bordering the west parking lot of the building at 221 Broadway Avenue. Weather permitting, installation of stone facing may also begin in the vicinity of the Race Street Bridge.

If you have any questions, contact the city via Brad Bennett at Update materials provided by the city.

Looks like a lot is going on! What are you most excited to see?

Survey time this Saturday!

The Friends of the Boneyard are working to get local input on the Boneyard Redevelopment Plan in order to make sure that all stages are incorporating elements (activities, infrastructure, etc.) that will make these spaces truly engaging and sustainable for our community! We’ve been working with the City to add to the project they are doing and see this as a collaborative effort.

Recently we’ve been working with a class at the University of Illinois to better access our local community and get vital feedback from more residents. This coming Saturday, we’ll be canvassing/surveying residents in 5 different Wards in Urbana, to ask their thoughts and get their input on what they want at the Boneyard! Chances are some of these University students will be knocking at your door – so please, let them know your thoughts! If you’d like to answer the survey and are not visited, do let me know, and I’ll send you a copy of the survey for you to fill out as well.

We understand that not all residents see this change as a positive one. Because of this, we’d like to really focus on your neighborhood and its residents in order to best understand what would work for this particular community and perhaps work toward potential alternatives, should that be wanted. If you would like to be part of a focus group on the section nearest your neighborhood, please indicate so on the survey, or email us at the address below.

Students will be knocking on doors between 9 am and 12 pm. If you should want to fill out a short survey on your opinions for what you’d like to see/experience at the Boneyard Creek and don’t receive a personal visit, you can contact us at to receive an electronic copy. We want to hear from as many people as possible!

Thanks again for your support, interest, and comments as we move forward in this exciting process.


Grace R. Kenney

Updates, Updates – October 2013

Hello Friends!

Our contacts over at the City of Urbana have recently provided us with some exciting updates to what’s currently going on with the redevelopment along Race Street …

Below, you can see what was completed in September – looks like the City has been quite busy!!

Work completed during September included: the North Race Street pavement from the Silvercreek Restaurant to the University Avenue intersection; footings for the east abutment railroad trestle pedestrian bridge; monument and parapet walls extending from the new Race Street Bridge; sheet pile removal along the north side of the creek; completion of the sidewalks on Broadway Avenue except adjacent to the railroad crossing signals; sidewalks on North Race Street between University Avenue and Park Street; two additional sections of the form-lined decorative wall at the east edge of the project; and the anchor slab and parapet for the first half of the wall south of City Parking Lot 25. Work was also started in September on the following: rock-filled gabion baskets bordering the north side of the creek west of the North Race Street Bridge; repair of the western piers of the railroad trestle pedestrian bridge; sheet pile driving for the walls adjacent to the Norfolk Southern Railroad Bridge; and signal work for the North Race Street railroad crossing.

That’s not all! October should be pretty busy, too. The City estimates that the following will be the main work completed this month:

Other anticipated project work in October includes construction of the final sections of the poured wall east of the building at 208 Griggs Street; walls for the east abutment of the railroad trestle pedestrian bridge; the sheet pile wall south of the Norfolk Southern Railroad Bridge; and repairs to the trestle bridge piers.

Just an update though, there will be a temporary re-route, so be aware if you’re planning to travel through this part of town! –

The City’s Contractor, Feutz will be reconstructing the intersection of North Race Street and Griggs Street. North Race Street and Griggs Street at their intersection will be closed to through traffic beginning on Monday October 14, 2013 starting at 7:00 A.M. and ending on Monday October 28, 2013 at 5:00 P.M., weather permitting.

Access will be maintained to properties on North Race Street and Griggs Street during the street reconstruction work but no through traffic permitted on North Race Street and Griggs Street.

Want to know more? Take a look at the City update page! Exciting things are coming quickly our way!!!


Current Boneyard Redevelopment Update

Curious about what’s been happening at the current redeveloping segment of the Boneyard Creek from Griggs Street to Broadway Avenue? Here’s pictures, an update, and a way you can find out more from the city! September 2013 Project Update Report (PDF)

You can also follow the city’s improvements at the following website:

Popularise – we want your ideas!

Dear Friends:

Popularise, a great website that hosts projects for community input in different cities around the USA, is hosting the Urbana Boneyard project for the next couple of months.

Check out our page, and please send us a comment, link, picture or anything else to describe what you would like in that particular phase closest to the downtown!

Friends of the Boneyard

Friends of the Boneyard is a community group of all kinds of people coming together to voice their ideas on what they’d like to have at different stages and segments of the Boneyard Creek. Whether you’re a business owner, local resident, parent, child, student, young professional, musician, artist, developer, restaurant owner and so on, we want to hear your ideas for events, activities, and anything else you’d like to see incorporated in the Boneyard Creek Master Plan! To note, this isn’t to change the Plan, but to add community input on what locals would like to have and experience at the Boneyard’s different segments.

We will be using the Popularise platform (coming soon!) to collect ideas, but we’ll be using this blog site to give more background information, updates, post pictures, and generally keep you informed and host vital information!

Of course, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at:

We look forward to reading your ideas!