From biking to dining, the three new branches of the Chicago Riverwalk that opened on June 27, 2015, allow locals and visitors to enjoy the Chicago River in a variety of ways. Visitors can appreciate the expansion project by riding in an iconic yellow water taxi, dining at an outdoor wine garden, paddling in kayaks through the skyscraper ravine or learning about the river itself at the Chicago River Museum.
The design of this project delivers “continuous walkways and recreational amenity” that extends from downtown to the lakefront. It connects the river with the people of Chicago.
The riverwalk offer distinct views from its “Marina,” “Cove” and “River Theater” sections. Between State Street and Dearborn Street, the Marina accommodates retailers, boaters and concessions. From Dearborn to Clark Street, the Cove allows kayakers and picnickers to seek shelter among native plants. And River Theater, from Clark to LaSalle Street, serves as gigantic amphitheater, with trees rising from the steps.
The final stretch of the Riverwalk Project will extend from LaSalle to Lake Street. It will showcase a children’s fountain, educational platforms, boat rentals and the river as part of the overall proposal. The final phase of the Riverwalk Project construction is anticipated to be completed by the end of 2016, according to the Riverwalk Expansion website.
In July 2015, ELPC spent some time on the newly expanded Riverwalk to ask locals, staff and tourists how they are enjoying the Chicago River and the Riverwalk.