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Kedzie Avenue CN Railroad Bridge

Chicago, Madison and Northern Railroad Bridge

Kedzie Avenue CN Railroad Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: August 12, 2006 and September 7, 2011

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Key Facts

Location
Chicago: Cook County, Illinois: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1899 By Builder/Contractor: Toledo Bridge Company of Toledo, Ohio (Former Smith Bridge Company of Toledo, Ohio)

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
474 Feet (145 Meters)
Structure Length
479 Feet (146 Meters)
Roadway Width
Not Available
Spans
1 Main Span(s)
NBI Number
Not Applicable

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)

Bridge Documentation

View Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) Documentation For This Bridge

HAER Data Pages, PDF

View A Historical Article About The Sanitary and Ship Canal

This is the swing bridge visible northeast of Kedzie Avenue, and is one of three impressive and rare swing bridges remaining on the Sanitary and Ship Canal, which are among the oldest and most historic in the history-rich Cook County bridge inventory.

This swing bridge is the longest of the swing bridges on this canal, and has a slightly pointier peak at the center of the span compared to the other swing bridges, which makes it look taller. It was reportedly the longest swing span ever built when completed. The McArthur Brothers and Winston and Company were the substructure contractors, while the Toledo Bridge Company was the superstructure contractor. Total cost was $110,644.85. The weight of the iron and steel in the bridge when completed was 2,511,140 pounds.

Thanks to Tom Winkle for providing boat transportation to assist in the photo-documentation of this historic bridge.

Illinois Central Railroad Swing Bridge

Information and Findings From Chicago Landmarks Designation

General Information

Address: North of the Stevenson Expressway, East of Kedzie Ave. (Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal)
Year Built: 1899 - 1900
Architect: Sanitary District of Chicago
Date Designated a Chicago Landmark: December 12, 2007

Spanning the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal north of the Stevenson Expressway; the Illinois Central Railroad Swing Bridge was originally built for the Chicago, Madison & Northern Railroad. The span is made from a single steel truss which measures 479'-5" in length and at the time of its completion was the longest swing span ever erected. The bridge rests on a center pier situated in the middle of the canal. When operational, the bridge would pivot on the center pier to create a navigable channel on either side. Today, the IC Railroad Bridge is one of the few center-bearing swing-span bridges that remain and possesses a distinctive visual presence that can be seen from the Stevenson Expressway and Kedzie Avenue.

This Bridge Is A Designated Chicago Landmark

Visit The Chicago Landmarks Website

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Historic Bridges of Chicago and Cook County

Flag of Chicago Seal of Cook County

Complete Bridge List

Chicago and Cook County are home to one of the largest collections of historic bridges in the country, and no other city in the world has more movable bridges. HistoricBridges.org is proud to offer the most extensive coverage of historic Chicago bridges on the Internet.

General Chicago / Cook County Bridge Resources

Chicago's Bridges - By Nathan Holth, author of HistoricBridges.org, this book provides a discussion of the history of Chicago's movable bridges, and includes a virtual tour discussing all movable bridges remaining in Chicago today. Despite this broad coverage, the book is presented in a compact format that is easy to take with you and carry around for reference on a visit to Chicago. The book includes dozens of full color photos. Only $9.95 U.S! ($11.95 Canadian). Order Now Direct From The Publisher! or order on Amazon.

Chicago River Bridges - By Patrick T. McBriarty, this is a great companion to Holth's book shown above. This much larger book offers an extremely in-depth exploration of Chicago's movable highway bridges, including many crossings that have not existed for many years. Order Now Direct From The Publisher! or order on Amazon.

View Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) Overview of Chicago Bascule Bridges (HAER Data Pages, PDF)

Chicago Loop Bridges - Chicago Loop Bridges is another website on the Internet that is a great companion to the HistoricBridges.org coverage of the 18 movable bridges within the Chicago Loop. This website includes additional information such as connections to popular culture, overview discussions and essays about Chicago's movable bridges, additional videos, and current news and events relating to the bridges.

Additional Online Articles and Resources - This page is a large gathering of interesting articles and resources that HistoricBridges.org has uncovered during research, but which were not specific to a particular bridge listing.

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Photo Galleries and Videos: Kedzie Avenue CN Railroad Bridge

 
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Bridge Photo-Documentation
Original / Full Size Photos
A collection of overview and detail photos. This gallery offers photos in the highest available resolution and file size in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer
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Bridge Photo-Documentation
Mobile Optimized Photos
A collection of overview and detail photos. This gallery features data-friendly, fast-loading photos in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer
View Video
Passing Under Bridge
Full Motion Video
Streaming video of the bridge. Also includes a higher quality downloadable video for greater clarity or offline viewing.

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Maps and Links: Kedzie Avenue CN Railroad Bridge

Coordinates (Latitude, Longitude):
41.832420,-87.702480

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