The City of Bloomington presents a new upcoming park in the city center, commemorating the city’s links to Route 66

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WMBD / WYZZ) – The Downton area in Bloomington will be getting a facelift in 2022.

On Thursday, city leaders dedicate and preview a parklet that is expected to come to the region next year.

Catherine Dunlap, of the Bloomington Economic Development Department, said she wanted to create a space commemorating Bloomington’s connection to the nearly 100-year-old Route 66, which the community could also interact with.

“The idea came about to create an interactive community bench or space, where it would be a place to take photos and for the community to enjoy our beautiful downtown,” said Dunlap.

At the corners of East Jefferson Street and North Main Street, Dunlap said the parklet’s location would fit in nicely with other Route 66 commemorations in the city.

“Where this parklet is placed they have the McLean County History Museum, which houses our visitor center Cruisin ‘with Lincoln on 66, and so we have all kinds of these wonderful amenities as well as our beautiful architecture in Center -City of Bloomington, ”Dunlap said.

Funding for the parklet comes from the Mid-Illinois REALTORS® Association (MIRA) via a site creation grant.

Karen Stailey-Lander of MIRA, said that as a member of Bloomington-Normal, they want to help make their home more vibrant.

“What I really want to highlight is the fact that with our association of real estate agents, we want to let the community know that we do more than sell houses, and that is really important to us,” a Stailey-Lander said.

Dunlap said the city was grateful for the contribution. She added that the parklet is expected to be completed and the benches installed by early summer 2022.