Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT)

Link to News from the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) for the latest on Chicago road and bridge projects including bridge lift schedules and current and impending street closings and road work.

The Man Living in the Lake Shore Drive Bridge
Many people love to hear about the story of the man living in the Lake Shore Drive Bridge.  I tell this story in my book Chicago River Bridges and there is also a great interview by Ira Glass of Richard Dorsay at the beginning of a This American Life podcast segment entitled The Bridge (Click the link to listen) from May 7, 2010. 


What's Going On With the Division Street Bridges? - March 3, 2015.  In July 2014, the Chicago Department of Transportation undertook an emergency $6 million project to replace the 111-year-old East Division Street Bridge with an interim Bailey bridge.

Will the Burgeoning South Loop Ever Get Its Two Missing Chicago River Bridges Back - July 27, 2015.  Over the past couple decades, as the South Loop neighborhood has seen significant development and gentrification, there is a greater demand for the restoration of a bridge at Polk and/or Taylor Streets.

The Pennsylvania Railroad Bridge in Chinatown - Vernacular Architecture ForumSept. 10, 2014.   A history of this 100-year old Waddell-Harrington vertical-lift bridge crossing the South Branch of the Chicago River.

The Chicago & Alton Railway Bridge - Vernacular Architecture ForumSept. 24, 2014.  Explores this unique Page bascule bridge, its origins and some of the history of the Bridgeport neighborhood of Chicago.

Grand Avenue Bridge 100 Years on  December 13 - North Loop NewsDec. 13, 2013.  Celebrates the 100th birthday of the Grand Avenue Bridge over the North Branch of the Chicago River.

Various Other Bridge Articles

Articles and videos about Chicago's fantastic bridges

The Division Street Bridge: See It While You CanJune 17, 2014.  One of Chicago’s oldest bridges will soon become a memory.

Randolph Street Bridge Turns 30 - December 19, 2014.  The most recently constructed Chicago drawbridge approaches mid-life in good shape.

Z6: Chicago's most Unique and Still Working Swing Bridge - March 3, 2015.  Chicago's last operating swing bridge strangely crossing the North Branch of the Chicago River. 

Railroads and Swing Bridges - September 3, 2013. Chicago still has several over 100 year old swing bridges and one still swings!

Though extensive, Chicago River Bridges is just the beginning of all there is to discover about Chicago's bridges and bridges in general.  This vast topic continues to evolve and grow.  Regularly gathering new information and new stories, additional research, images, and information have turned into articles contributed (primarily) to the Forgotten Chicago and Chicago Architecture Info. websites.  The majority of these additional Chicago bridge articles and videos are cited below.  

Addition links and bridge information is also shared here.  If you have bridge questions, information, or permission to use images contact me at


Chicago's Rall Bascule Bridge (length 3:23) - March 30, 2014.  The only of Chicagoan Theodor Rall's bridges ever to be built in Chicago still stands 100 years later.

West Division Street Bridge in Chicago (length 4:28) - May 11, 2014.  A look at the remaining Division Street bascule bridge connecting Goose Island.

Chicago Drawbridge soon to be demolished at East Division Street (length 4:17) - May 24, 2014.  The second ever built Chicago-type bascule bridge less than a month before it was dismantled and sold for scrap.  

Videos on YouTube

Contributions to the Chicago Architecture Blog

The 12th Street Bridge That Never Was -February 5, 2014. Uncovers a patented design by a Chicago engineer almost constructed at Roosevelt Road.  Check out the rarely see renderings from CDOT Archives.

Bridgeport's Chicago & Alton Railroad Bridge -October 23, 2014. Bridgeport bridge history features this unique bascule bridge crossing Bubbly Creek. 

Contributions to Forgotten

How the Michigan Avenue Bridge Made Chicago What it is Today - January 15, 2014.  Chicago's most iconic bridge connecting the north and south sides spurred significant development for city, region, and nation in decades past opening more than 2,000 time a year.

A Chicago Favorite Remains Open For All To See - February 4, 2014. Details of the how and why the railroad bridge at Kinzie Street remains open, its origins and purpose invented by a Chicagoan and Chief Engineer of the Golden Gate Bridge.

For Bridge Lovers, Chicago is the Greatest Show on Earth - March 31, 2014. Inventories the dozen or more unique drawbridge designs in Chicago.  From swing to bascule unique innovations strung along Chicago's waterways.

Is Chicago About to Lose Its Title of The Drawbridge Capital of the World?  - May 19, 2014.   There has been a slow decline in the number of drawbridges in Chicago, especially on the North Branch what is expected next for bridge removal and preservation?

What it's Like to Lead a Chicago Architecture Boat Tour - September 11, 2014.  Curious what it might be like to docent an architectural tour?  Find out the kind of planning, preparation, work, and thoughts that go through the head of a tour guide.