Friday, October 21, 2016

Hubbard Street Tunnel

Because of C&NW's Hubbard Street Yard and the other rail facilities in the area and because I-90/94 was buried through downtown to go under all of the existing east/west roads, I-90/94 went under almost two city blocks.

1938 Aerial Photo from ILHAP
Looking at a 1962 aerial photo in Historic Aerials, some of the tracks had been removed and the buildings in the middle had been replaced by a new building that supported truck trailers. But the "tunnel roof" still had to be strong enough to support tracks and buildings. (The Halsted Street Viaduct was still a truss bridge in 1962.) Today, it supports parking lots.


David Daruszka commented on Wayne Hudak's posting
 "Shoofly" used during Kennedy construction.
Note all of the fire fighting water towers on top of the buildings.]

David Daruszka shared
Chicago & North Western Historical Society posting
WSe have published this photo before but we REALLY like it and there are people who are new to our site since we last published it. It is a C&NW company photo of the "shoo-fly" built to allow construction in Chicago of the "northwest expressway" (later- Kennedy) beneath the west line tracks of the C&NW in 1958. My, how the skyline has changed in 60 years. Note the passenger car transitional period.

Bart Culbertson I had an opportunity to visit Chicago with Bill Wimmer shortly after he retired from the UP. On one of these trips we visited some of the bridges near the Expressway. He mentioned to me that he recalled the construction of the steel spans over the Expressway. He was working as an instrument man on the survey crew at the time. I always wondered how these bridges were constructed back in the day while I worked as the Bridge Supervisor in Chicago for the C&NW . My office was located on track 1 back in 1987, until the shed was rebuilt , then I was located in the basement of the new Ogilvie Transportation Center.

Chicago & North Western Historical Society The Kennedy expressway runs under the shoo fly.
This was where the C&NW West Line crossed the Kennedy about a block north of the yard areas.

I had my daughter drive me around Chicago so that I could take pictures of some bridges. Here are the pictures I grabbed as we went south on I-90/94.

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I left the rear-view mirror in the frame because I wanted to maximize the capture of the of the Willis/Sears Tower. The road bridge is Hubbard Street and the railroad bridge is UP/C&NW's West Line.
We are under the West Line bridge looking at the Green Street and Kinzie Street bridges and the beginning of Hubbard Street Tunnel.

You can tell the difference between the Kinzie Street Bridge and the Hubbard Street Tunnel because of the thickness of the steel girders.  The girders are thicker than a minivan is tall!

I extracted a closeup in an attempt to show how dense the girders are placed.
Speaking of bridges, the lower level is Lake Street and the upper level carries the Green and Pink "L" trains.
Charlie Farley posted
Taken from an American Airlines transatlantic flight into O'Hare from the UK. Notice the two Metra trains in the lower right. Photo was taken in summer 1998.
Bill DeMar That looks like Hubbard's Cave bottom center.Jacob Metzger I think that's the UP North/Northwest, West and then the CP North lines?Jeff Lewis Yes.

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