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Final Leg Of Wacker Drive Reconstruction Begins

Wacker Drive

Wacker Drive has been closed for reconstruction between Monroe and Adams streets. (Credit: CBS)

Untitled-1 Kris Habermehl
Kris Habermehl is a lifelong Chicagoan who has been flying since the...
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CHICAGO (CBS) — The final leg of the Wacker Drive reconstruction project begins this week, and the intersection with Jackson Boulevard alongside the Willis Tower has closed.

CBS 2’s Kris Habermehl reports Monroe Street reopened over the weekend after being closed at Wacker Drive for the past six months. Adams Street is still closed, and will remain so until July.

Meanwhile, Jackson Boulevard was still open to pedestrian traffic early Monday, but will close altogether as complete reconstruction of the north-south section of Upper and Lower Wacker Drive continues.

To make up for the loss of Jackson Boulevard, Van Buren Street will become a two-way street between Wells and Franklin streets to make it easier for motorists to get to the Eisenhower Expressway. Usually, Van Buren is one way westbound.

Also, several Chicago Transit Authority bus routes are being relocated. The CTA has a Web site to allow riders to keep track.

The Revive Wacker Drive project began in June 2010, when work began to reconstruct the interchange between Wacker and the Eisenhower Expressway. That work will be in progress until this summer.

The project to rebuild the north-south portion of Wacker Drive began a year ago at Randolph Street.

A double-decker road along the Chicago River was part of Daniel Burnham’s 1909 Plan for Chicago. The east-west leg of Wacker Drive was completed in 1926, replacing River Street and most of South Water Street, while the north-south leg was finished in 1954, replacing Market Street.

East-west Wacker Drive was rebuilt from Michigan Avenue to Randolph Street in 2001 and 2002.