LINCOLN PARK — The westbound lanes of the Cortland Street Bridge are closed, but it has nothing to do with the Finkl Steel development.
According to the Chicago Department of Transportation, the westbound lanes are closed due to a Commonwealth Edison emergency project making tunnel repair work below. Although originally projected to be reopened Wednesday, updated information is that they'll be closed until Feb. 24.
Westbound traffic is advised to use Fullerton Avenue instead.
The north sidewalk is also closed, and westbound cyclists are asked to dismount and walk their bikes across the bridge on the south sidewalk, which also serves pedestrians.
The bridge came under fire recently at a community meeting on the North Branch Industrial Corridor Plan, where it was called old and unsightly. Members of the public suggested it be replaced with a wider bridge to ease traffic bottlenecks.
Yet officials with the Department of Planning and Development pointed out the 1902 structure is actually protected as a Chicago Landmark as the first leaf-lift (trunnion bascule) bridge built not only in Chicago, but in the United States. The basic design was later replicated and enlarged in bridges across the city.