Reclaimed waterfront that transforms the river into Chicago’s next great recreational park

Phases 2 & 3 of Chicago’s Riverwalk transformed underutilized waterfront infrastructure into five distinct “rooms” connecting riverside amenities to the city. The project faced the technical challenge of lowering the Riverwalk to the river’s edge to enable boating and water recreation while creating a sustainable, flood-resilient landscape.

The Chicago Riverwalk builds upon the City’s culture of planning and tradition of civic investment.

2017 Selection Committee

While design elements and materials provide a strong sense of continuity along the path, each of the five waterfront blocks offers a unique shape and programmatic approach to exploring the relationship between the river and the city. New waterfront amenities include art installations and events, educational programs and interpretive signage, restaurants and outdoor seating, kayak rentals, and piers and floating wetland gardens for interactive learning about the river’s ecology. The $95 million project covers 3.5 acres and was completed in October 2016.