The lengthy construction process for the Navy Pier Flyover has been frustrating for many Lakefront Trail users, but the city says it will be finished next year.
The flyover, which will allow people biking and walking on the trail to bypass congested vehicle traffic around Navy Pier, is one of the highest profile active transportation projects in the region. We get questions about the status often, especially as temperatures warm up and more people use the trail.
The Chicago Department of Transportation’s (CDOT) Navy Pier Flyover project page is the best resource for the latest news. The city also recently released a more detailed construction timeline:
- Phase 1 from Jane Addams Park to Ogden Slip is nearing completion.
- Phase 2 from Ogden Slip to the Chicago River is scheduled to get underway in summer 2017 and be completed in fall 2018, at which time the first two phases will open to the public.
- Phase 3 over the Chicago River is scheduled to start in fall 2017 and be complete by the end of 2018. The Flyover portion of the work on the bridge will be complete by the end of 2018 with additional bridge work to continue through spring 2019.
We are disappointed it’s taking so long to build the flyover, but it’s important the city gets it right. The area is one of the busiest biking and walking corridors in the region, and Navy Pier continues to attract more visitors every year.
See John Greenfield's latest reporting on the project in the Chicago Reader.
With the park district already moving ahead with creating separated trail space for people biking and walking along the full length of the Lakefront Trail over the next two years, traveling along the lake should be much safer and more convenient for everyone by 2019.
The city is quick to point out that the costly project presents several design challenges, and that the lack of a state capital bill or dedicated federal funding sources have contributed to delays. The $60 million flyover is primarily funded by the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) Program, with additional funding from the State of Illinois.
We’ll continue to monitor progress on the flyover and push for it to be completed on schedule. For updates, check the project page and sign up to receive advocacy updates all year long.
Image Credit: Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT)