Summer is here! Every year in the summer Chicago raises the bridges to let sailboats swim over to Lake Michigan. This beloved ritual marks the start of summer for many Chicagoans.
The second bridge raising in Chicago happened on a chilly, yet sunny, 40 degree day. Lines of cars and buses were backed up in front of the Tribune Tower while I was walking back to work. Curious why cars weren’t moving, I looked up Michigan Avenue and saw the HUGE Michigan Avenue bridge rising into the sky.
The sheer mass of metal rising into the air is something every Chicagoan must see in person. If you haven’t experienced the rise of the beast, swing by Tribune Tower around 2pm on Wednesdays (arriving a bit earlier at 1:30pm will ensure you won’t miss it). Also make sure to check out the official schedule to see if lifts were cancelled for the day.
Most times I witness the bridge being lifted from my desk window on the 14th floor of the Tribune Tower. But to be in the ground level is just awesome. The Michigan Avenue bridge is a double-decker, completed in 1928, it’s a feat of engineering.
While you are down by the bridge, make sure to check out the McCormick Bridgehouse & Chicago River Museum. It’s a cute little museum housed in the southwest bridgetower. Just the quirkiness of the location is worth the five dollar admission. Every time you walk on the Michigan Avenue Bridge, you’ll remember being inside the bridge tower and getting some fun views out the porthole windows.
Summer is now here! 40 degrees is the new temperature for Chicago summer!