"Chicago River" The Chicago River Tip by grkboiler
The Chicago River, Chicago: 59 reviews and 99 photos
The Chicago River is an engineering marvel, believe it or not. In the 1800's sewage and waste were dumped into the river, which flowed into Lake Michigan. Lake Michigan was and still is the major source of water for Chicago and surrounding areas.
With rainstorms, the river would backup and overflow into the lake, which polluted the drinking water. People started to die from diseases, so in 1900, a canal called the Sanitary and Ship Canal was finished and allowed for control of the flow of wastewater. It is controlled by locks at the mouth of the south branch of the river. This gave Chicago the first river in the world that flows backwards.
The river also gives Chicago more moveable bridges than any other city in the world, and a part of the river was actually straightened in the 1920's. Another interesting fact is that the river is dyed green every year on St. Patrick's Day, although we joke that it is green all the time.
Address: Start at the Michigan Ave. Bridge @ Wacker Dr.
Directions: cuts down the center of downtown, East to West
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