Street closure planned for exploratory excavation at historic NW Side cemetery

SHARE Street closure planned for exploratory excavation at historic NW Side cemetery

A Northwest Side street will be closed starting Friday as archeologists excavate part of a historic, unmarked cemetery in advance of a planned roadway construction project.

The Chicago Dept. of Transportation and an archeology team will perform controlled test excavations in the unmarked Read Dunning Cemetery No. 3, near Oak Park Avenue between Irving Park Road and Forest Preserve Drive, CDOT said.

Research revealed the cemetery pre-dated the development of Oak Park Avenue in the 1930s, the department said. It was primarily used by a county institution that came before the Read Dunning facility, between 1890 and 1912.

The excavations will determine if there are any burials in the path of a planned roadway reconstruction project on Oak Park Avenue, according to CDOT.

No burial sites will be disturbed and no graves or features will be relocate during this phase of the project.

“CDOT is committed to carrying out the process with the utmost care and respect for the deceased,” the department said in a release.

Traffic in both directions will be detoured via Harlem Avenue. The length of the closure will be determined by the results of the excavation.

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