Nancy Hays to get bridge

Staff Writer

Jackson Park may soon be home to the Nancy Hays Memorial Bridge.

The Chicago Park District Board of Commissioners last week approved renaming the north bridge on Wooded Island after the former Hyde Park Herald photographer and neighborhood activist.

The renaming will happen following a 45-day comment period, which will end on Dec. 30.

Hays made her career as a Hyde Park Herald photographer and a documentarian of life in Hyde Park. Her images capturing scenes from the community during and after Urban Renewal showed both the playful side of Hyde Park and chronicled the transformation of the landscape. She was also well-known as an advocate for parks and nature. She died in 2007.

“She was a force to be reckoned with and well known by the neighborhood,” Jackson Park Advisory Council President Louise McCurry said.

McCurry said Hayes was one of the founding members of JPAC and Friends of the Parks and her commitment to Jackson Park was among the reasons for the renaming effort.

Public comments either for or against renaming the bridge can be submitted to the Chicago Park District before Dec. 30.