FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the Lakefront Trail?
The Lakefront Trail is an 18.5-mile bike and pedestrian trail along Lake Michigan that goes from Hollywood Avenue on the north end to 71st Street on the south end. The scenic path runs along parks, beaches and gardens in several neighborhoods throughout the City.
Why is it called the Navy Pier Flyover?
The term refers to the user’s uninterrupted ability to travel over the Chicago River, DuSable Park, the Ogden Slip, Illinois Street, Grand Avenue, Jane Addams Park and the Ohio Street Tunnel.
What is the project’s construction budget and how is it funded?
The Navy Pier Flyover is primarily funded by the US. Department of Transportation using Congestion Mitigation Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ), with additional funding from the State of Illinois. The first phase of construction is budgeted at $22.5 million. The next two phases of construction will be funded by the same sources in their respective construction years.
Why is a Flyover needed?
The Flyover will provide grade separation at Illinois Street and Grand Avenue for the Lakefront Trail. It will reduce crossing conflicts between the multi-use path users and cars going to and from Navy Pier area.
How high is the Flyover path?
The top of the path will be generally at the height of the existing mid-level Lake Shore Drive. While separate and protected from Lake Shore Drive, the path is intended to remain as close to Lake Shore Drive as possible and provide a low profile.
How wide is the Flyover path?
The Flyover path is 16 feet wide, adding capacity to the existing path, which will remain open and available for use.
Will there be roadway lane closures?
Yes. Current lane closures include:
- Through Fall 2020, there will be permanent lane closures on Lower Lake Shore Drive including:
- The west and east sidewalk over the river
- The two easternmost, northbound lanes on Lower Lake Shore Drive over the river
- Access to Illinois Street and Grand Avenue from the northbound lanes of Lower Lake Shore Drive will be restricted, and a detour will be set up to Columbus Avenue.
- Additional daytime lane closures on northbound and southbound Upper Lake Shore Drive include:
- On October 14, the two left lanes on northbound and southbound Upper Lake Shore Drive will be closed from 9:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.
- On October 15, the two right lanes on northbound and southbound Upper Lake Shore Drive will be closed from 9:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.
- October 16 will be used as a backup day if needed due to weather or other issues.
Visit Detours & Closures for more information.
Updates will be provided through traffic alerts and the project website. Continue to visit this website throughout the project to help plan your trip accordingly.
When will the Flyover be completed?
The full Navy Pier Flyover structure is slated for completion by the end of 2020. The revised completion date is in response to extensive additional repairs being conducted on the Depression-era Lake Shore Drive bridge over the Chicago River. Handling these repairs now will ensure the safety of those using the Flyover and the adjoining Lake Shore Drive bridge in the years to come.
Is part of the Navy Pier Flyover open?
On December 20, 2018, the most critical section of the Navy Pier Flyover opened over Grand and Illinois streets. This means pedestrians and bikers will no longer have to cross the two busy roadways.
Can pedestrians and bikes still use the Lakefront Trail path during construction?
Pedestrians and bikes can continue to use the Lakefront Trail path near Navy Pier, though detour routes will be in place throughout construction. There will be minor changes to the detour as construction progresses. Check back with the website for the latest detour maps.
Will the Flyover be lit?
While a majority of the path will be lit from the ambient light of Lake Shore Drive, there will also be a system of LED lights built into the railing to provide an even glow for the path. Other LED lights will provide architectural lighting for the railing, columns and spine.
Who will maintain the Flyover once it’s complete?
The Chicago Park District, a non-participatory co-sponsor, will maintain the path.
Why is the Flyover structure so complex?
The new steel structure includes a spine, like a roller coaster, which will achieve a smooth and complex horizontal and vertical alignment necessary to clear an existing Lake Shore Drive off-ramp, as well as area structures.
What color is the coating on the steel structure?
The color of the structural steel will be grey.
Will construction be noisy?
There will be minor excavation and pile-driving operations resulting in high noise levels. Other noisy operations will include Lake Shore Drive saw-cutting and structure removal and excavation associated with the ramp that will run adjacent to the Lake Shore Drive off-ramp to Navy Pier. However, the contractor will have limited permitted work hours and no weekend hours unless specifically permitted during the summer season.
Will trees be removed as part of this project?
Yes, there will be trees removed on Illinois Street and in Jane Addams Park to make way for the Flyover. However, the contract requires an extensive tree replacement and landscape plan which will be completed at the end of the project.
Who can I contact with questions about construction?
You can email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 312-464-0241. You can also connect with CDOT on social media: @ChicagoDOT and facebook.com/cdotnews.