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Old March 9th, 2009, 03:10 AM   #181
harryc
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Riverwalk - II

Mar 5
A finished section of retaining wall


Forms and rebar in place


Putting the forms in place


Old piles and wall being capped.


Bricks used to space the rebar above the old piles


Detail of the old wall


Fixing a hole where the river gets in.


The vault that was built on the barge in January ?


E end pumped out showing old piles


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Old March 13th, 2009, 04:23 AM   #182
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A good report on the process.

Quote:
..http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/l...0,764986.story

Chicago river walk extension keeps rolling along
The latest phase of work to connect existing sections of riverfront pathways is expected to be done in June.
By Noreen S. Ahmed-Ullah | Tribune staff reporter
March 12, 2009

Tourists crossing the Michigan Avenue bridge often find it a perfect spot to snap pictures or to marvel at how blue, not so blue or even green the water is below. But for some weeks now, pedestrians have been stopping in mid-stroll to stare at the commotion below.

The towering cranes on anchored barges, giant tubs of broken concrete, hoses pumping out cordoned sections of the Chicago River and thunderous hammering of steel piles being pounded 50 feet below the surface of the water are part of a project to complete a continuous river walk from Lake Michigan to State Street.

City officials expect the project to be completed by June.

"You can really see the progress of what's going on," said Todd Brown, 30, who was fascinated by the scene on a recent afternoon. "Rather than seeing a skyscraper being built, you have several platforms to watch."

Phillip Dixon said he had been noticing the progress but had no idea the work was to expand the river walk.

"I never thought to use the river walk," said Dixon, 34, a salesman. "I might use it now once the expansion is done."

The project involves filling in the pieces to create a seamless walk along the river downtown. Gaps in the existing river walk between State Street and Michigan Avenue will be filled with 17-foot-wide "under-bridges," said Michelle Woods, project manager for the Chicago Department of Transportation.

"What we have currently is more of a river climb than a river walk," Woods said. The walkway currently ends abruptly at various junctures, forcing people to take the stairs. "This will allow you to have a continuous path from State Street to the lakefront."

Officials hope the river walk will incorporate more retail, entertainment, restaurants and recreational activities, such as bike rentals and public art displays.

The current walkway boasts a handful of restaurants and the Bridgehouse & Chicago River Museum at the southwest tower of the Michigan Avenue bridge. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial, on the river walk between Wabash Avenue and State Street, was completed in 2005 and has become a popular lunchtime destination during the summer.

Members of the Chicago Riverwalk Development Committee, made up of business and civic leaders, are waiting to see what the river walk extension will look like before suggesting the amenities they'd like to see, said committee member Holly Agra, president of Chicago's First Lady Cruises.

"We've sort of been the lone rangers down there on the river for many years along with Wendella [Boats]," Agra said. "It's just exciting to see the progress of the construction and see the city planning to make the Chicago River a destination within a destination."

The $22 million price tag for this phase of the project, financed through the Central Loop tax increment financing district, increased by several hundred thousand dollars from the contract bid because of unanticipated construction costs, said CDOT spokesman Brian Steele. The bid itself was roughly double the city's original estimate of $10 million to $12 million in 2002.

Steele said early estimates had tagged the cost of the entire project at $50 million, but increases in fuel, steel and construction costs will put it higher. He said he could not estimate how much higher, however, until after designs for the next phase of the project—extending the river walk to Lake Street—get under way later this year.......
More in Link.....
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Old March 15th, 2009, 11:24 PM   #183
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March 11





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Old April 6th, 2009, 01:04 AM   #184
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March 11


March 17
Plates the rc will lock into.


March 27


March 30




April 02




An Ironworker test the wall for proper leaning height.


Well protected cable run.


Screen to protect the walkway from debris coming through the bridge deck above.


Seems a bit of overkill. this would hold a small car.


riverwalk dips to go under Michigan Ave.


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Old April 24th, 2009, 04:26 AM   #185
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nomarandlee View Post
Yea, I saw those as well, pretty amazing stuff. Though cool I am weary of such redundant mega-projects even as cool looking as those. I am guessing these renders/ideas are pretty old and am not sure how likely we are to see either the riverwalk/Franklin Point to come to fruition but they are intreasting indeed. Now that I think about it I do want to see I have seen these all before someplace else around here but its always intreasting to take another look...

Here are the Franklin Point renders......
http://www.cordoganclark.com/project...ment/page.html

Is this north or south of River City?
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Old April 24th, 2009, 06:27 AM   #186
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I'm guessing just to the north, since that's where Franklin dead ends, at Harrison. To the south of River City is predominately the Roosevelt Collection.
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Old April 25th, 2009, 05:43 AM   #187
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I'm guessing just to the north, since that's where Franklin dead ends, at Harrison. To the south of River City is predominately the Roosevelt Collection.
Yes, that was intended for the area bordered by Wells, the River, Harrison, and River City. It was a conceptual plan done by Cordogan, Clark that I dont even think was commissioned to do the work. It is dead.
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Old May 8th, 2009, 11:27 PM   #188
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Some good progress. Looks like the concrete is done.

East of MI Ave bridge:

West of MI Ave bridge:

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Old May 8th, 2009, 11:48 PM   #189
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Are there plans for some planters/trees when the main construction is done? Because right now it seems kinda harshly concrete.
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Old May 9th, 2009, 12:24 AM   #190
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Yes. You can actually figure out the planting areas in the pics above.

A small rendering from cityofchicago.org:
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Old May 9th, 2009, 05:13 AM   #191
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May 6









The pipe being attached, as I was leaving they were rigging up a rope so the guy on the barge could hold it suspended for the diver.
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Old May 17th, 2009, 09:11 PM   #192
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Michigan - W side

Lighting ( May 8 )


Big flower pot ( May 14 )


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Old June 2nd, 2009, 02:25 AM   #193
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Just east of MI Ave bridge about done:


An O'Brien's opening soon, in the shadow of Trump (assume it's the same owners as the one on Wells in Old Town):
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Old June 3rd, 2009, 05:36 AM   #194
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An O'Brien's opening soon, in the shadow of Trump (assume it's the same owners as the one on Wells in Old Town):
That would be them... a very politically connected family.
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Old June 3rd, 2009, 08:19 PM   #195
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I'm sure it was a completely fair and open process for them to get that location...
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Old June 3rd, 2009, 11:45 PM   #196
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It doesn't actually sound like that great a location.

I guess time will tell, but I'm still in the Jane Jacobs-school of this riverwalk being aesthetically nice, but potentially out of the realm of everyday foot traffic, which is essential for any businesses there.
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Old June 4th, 2009, 12:07 AM   #197
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I agree with you. Walking along Wacker, you hardly notice there's another level along the river. The tourists, of course, will seek it out, and anyone who takes an architecture boat tour will be exposed to it. But it's going to take some time for people to learn that there's something down there besides empty concrete and and great views of Lower Wacker traffic. Hopefully, the businesses will be able to advertise at street level, but not be tacky about it.

It doesn't look like boats will be able to tie up in front of O'Brian's, but that could certainly bring more life to the river. Who wouldn't want to cruise down the river in the evening and grab a few drinks? Works in Florida.
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Old June 4th, 2009, 12:17 AM   #198
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simulcra View Post
It doesn't actually sound like that great a location.

I guess time will tell, but I'm still in the Jane Jacobs-school of this riverwalk being aesthetically nice, but potentially out of the realm of everyday foot traffic, which is essential for any businesses there.
where have you been? o'brien's has been in that location along the river for at least a couple summers now and doing well from the times i've been down there. it's a great place to enjoy a beer and a burger on a nice summer evening. and the increased traffic from a better connected riverwalk will only make business better for them i'm sure.
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Old June 14th, 2009, 05:28 AM   #199
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June 10



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Old June 28th, 2009, 03:35 AM   #200
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..
Quote:
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/l...,2655020.story

City's second waterfront
Riverwalk improved, but hurdles remain

Blair Kamin Cityscapes
June 28, 2009

It was lunchtime downtown and Justin Grant felt like sunning himself. But instead of heading to a tanning spa, the 23-year-old sales manager left his office building and strolled to the newest stretch of Chicago's riverwalk, where he stripped off his blue shirt and stretched out on a concrete bench.

"This is a great place to come," Grant said. "You can watch the boats go by."

In recent weeks, scores of walkers, joggers, bicyclists and others have discovered the riverwalk that just opened on the Chicago River's south bank. Stretching from east of the Michigan Avenue Bridge to Wabash Avenue, with an extension to State Street due to wrap up in early July, the handsome, people-friendly public space marks the latest step in Mayor Richard Daley's ambitious drive to make the riverfront a prime public space downtown and in the city's outlying neighborhoods.

Think of it as a new lakefront. A completed riverwalk would offer much-needed open space for tens of thousands of office workers and downtown apartment dwellers. And it would let you do along the riverfront what you can do along most of the lakefront: walk, bike or jog without interruption, enjoying the water along the way.

Yet there are obstacles, including the need to obtain millions of dollars in federal funds to bankroll city-controlled portions of the project. An equally daunting hurdle: the city's reliance on real estate developers to deliver improvements on the vast majority of riverfront land, which is privately owned.
While the three-tiered riverwalk at the base of Donald Trump's 92-story hotel and condominium tower is heading for completion in late summer or early fall, the recession has put other notable riverfront projects -- and their amenities -- on hold. Among them: the 150-story Chicago Spire, which was tied to the construction of a riverfront plaza and a new Du Sable Park at the river's mouth.

Still, the overall course that planners are taking seems right. They wisely are not aiming to create a Frost Belt version of San Antonio's famous yet heavily commercialized River Walk, which is lined by shops, bars and restaurants. They seek, instead, to complement Chicago's vibrant downtown with a riverwalk where you can find food and drink, but also "go down and touch nature," said Richard Wilson of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, the Chicago firm that is preparing a long-range plan for the river.

Chicago was born by the river and named for the wild onion plants that once thrived on its banks. But in the boom years of the 19th Century, businessmen turned the river into an artery of commerce and a sewer for dumping industrial waste. The river became a forbidding trench, an "On the Waterfront" landscape of piers, bulkheads and bollards for tying up ships. Buildings turned their backs to it

"That was a tough place," said Tim Samuelson, the City of Chicago's cultural historian. "It was all about business."

The new riverwalk, on the other hand, is all about pleasure, even if it has not come cheap. Funded through the Central Loop tax-increment financing district, the Michigan-to-State stretch is expected to cost about $22 million, which works out to roughly $16,755 per foot of waterfront. That's roughly double the original estimate, an increase that the project's sponsor, the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT), attributes to soaring costs for fuel, steel and construction.

Still, as designed by Chicago architect Carol Ross Barney and her associate John Fried, the riverwalk combines engineering muscle and architectural elan to make a more welcoming waterfront.

Built atop steel piles and concrete landfill, the project plugs gaps in the existing riverwalk with new pathways, 17 feet wide, that slide beneath the Michigan Avenue and Wabash Avenue Bridges. Pedestrians no longer have to climb stairs to street level to get from one section of the river walk to another. Once the Wabash-to-State section opens, there will be a continuous waterfront pathway from "That Great Street" to Lake Michigan.

The architects have nicely outfitted the riverwalk with simple concrete benches and see-through stainless steel railings that let you lean out over the water, even if you can't quite touch it. East of Michigan Avenue, there are boulders to sit on, and west of Michigan, the riverwalk gracefully loops around a waterfront restaurant that has the de rigueur umbrella-topped tables.

The best stroke, however, comes in the spectacular canopies that protect riverwalk pedestrians from trash falling from the bridges above. As you pass beneath them, the canopies' stainless steel shingles create a mirror effect, brilliantly reflecting the waters of the river, the people beneath it, even boats going by. Instead of under-bridge fear, you get under-bridge delight.

"It's like a linear Bean," said Andrew Gleeson, a senior architect at the Chicago firm of Murphy/Jahn as he ate lunch along the new riverwalk. He was referring, of course, to the " Cloud Gate" sculpture, also known as the Bean, in Millennium Park.

While this stretch of river walk has faults, including some areas with too much concrete, it nonetheless sets a high standard for future riverwalk development. In the next couple of weeks, the city hopes to advertise a request for proposals for the State-to-Lake Street portion of the riverwalk, according to Michelle Woods, the CDOT project manager who oversaw the new riverwalk.

And during the summer, the architectural firm of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill will present to the Chicago Plan Commission a long-range "framework plan" for the 1.3-mile-long trunk of the river between Lake Street and Lake Michigan.

The plan, still in draft form, calls for creating four "identity districts" along the river, according to Wilson, who is urban planning practice leader for Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. Among them would be a new chunk of green space at the confluence of the river's North and South Branches that would extend 50 feet into the water and feature a restaurant or some other "destination amenity."

That vision, perhaps too commercial, is a vast leap from what you see now if you peer down from the bend in Wacker Drive toward the river's edge: a lifeless dock, strewn with trash, where a homeless man rested on a sleeping bag one recent morning.

The city is smartly concentrating on the south bank of the river because it controls the land there. The north bank, in contrast, is primarily in the hands of private owners, as is most of Chicago's other riverfront land. Because of the recession, that land is unlikely to be developed for years, meaning that architects' visions of fishermen and strollers on riverwalks along the North and South Branches also won't be realized anytime soon.

Still, a pause offers time to think and plan. And as the lakefront reveals, it can take decades, if not generations, to transform a city's mind-set and map.......................
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