Chicago River North Branch Tour Photos

See Chicago River North Branch Tour for orienting yourself to the site of this photo tour.


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The Boathouse and The Launch










The first stretch headed toward Addison has a transformer station almost immediately to the west.


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At Addison you’ll find the first sighting of sewer overflows. Notice the hinge door below the locally decorated portion of the overpass footing.

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Except for a few scattered building tops over the treeline, the viewshed on the stretch from Addison to Irving Park is mostly natural due to the manufacturing in this area.

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Irving Park to Montrose the buildings make a noticeable shift from the industry in the previous stretch. More homes and docks emerge on the east side of the river, and a park that lines the west side provides a similar natural feel as the ‘umaintained’ shoreline hiding all but building tops from the Addison to Irving Park stretch. The families that live along the river feed the ducks including a few mohawk sporting duck transplants native to Patagonia (the white one near the dock in the photo below). There is some controversy over the clearing of the treeline along Horner Park. The city would like to clear it of invasives, and the residents would prefer to keep the lush natural visual screen as it currently stands.

River buffer_5N_montrose to irving park 5c_nerighborhoods with streets_irving to montrose










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Montrose to Wilson and Wilson to Lawrence is purely residential. Just past Montrose docks increase, as do boat sizes, as the changing direction of the river changes the home orientation changes lot size in relation to river frontage. Following the bend leading up to Wilson and on to Lawrence parcels all have long lots extending to the river.


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At Wilson the number of bridges increases from 1/2 mile to 1/4 mile, and three visible bridges, with the addition of a bridge for the train, makes this very noticeable. From Wilson to Lawrence, parcels continue to be oriented “French long lots style.” Notably, a home in this stretch has invested in a wind turbine.

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Just past Lawrence is the North Branch Sewage Pumping Station, and the viewshed from the river stretching up toward the spillway south of Foster becomes very natural again.

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