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Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced Tuesday that construction of the new Navy Pier Flyover, a 32 foot tall bridge to enhance the city’s 18 mile lakefront bicycle trail (over the Chicago River at Navy Pier) is set to begin construction next week. The project, which is funded mostly by the U.S. Department of Transportation will cost an estimated $60 million.

The project, which originated under former Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, is broken up into three phases, the first of which, the will cost $26.4 million; $18 million of which will come from federal taxpayer dollars and $8.4 million coming from State of Illinois.

From the Chicago Tribune:

The project will be built in three overlapping phases:

–Phase one will stretch from the lakefront trail just north of the Ohio Street Beach and stop along the north bank of the Ogden Slip, the narrow body of water southwest of Navy Pier. This phase, expected to be finished by 2016, will include a spur for bikes and pedestrians running parallel to the Lake Shore Drive exit ramp AND leading to the pier.

–Phase two will extend the main trail and the pier spur southward across the Ogden Slip. Then, like a stem at the bottom of the letter “Y,” the two parts will form a single pathway past the now-scrubby site of the planned DuSable Park.

–Phase three will reach across the Chicago River, moving alongside the Lake Shore Drive bridge before sloping down to the park. Unlike the first two phases, which are essentially bridges, phrase three’s central element will be a new sidewalk that will cantilever out from the bridge’s lower level. The target completion date: spring, 2018.

The projected total cost of $60 million is a 33 percent increase from the figure given when the flyover’s design was unveiled in 2011. But the estimate includes additional elements, such as seawall repairs along the Ogden Slip and structural repairs to the Lake Shore Drive Bridge over the river, as well as increases in construction costs over the past few years, a spokesman for the city’s transportation department said.

The plans for the project can be viewed here.

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