The 100 Club
The centennial of the Washington Blvd bridge in 2013, brought to mind a broader question about old bridges in Chicago. How many 100 year old bridges are there?
As with all of these kinds of questions, it depends on the criteria. For my answer here, I count the number of bridges that fall under the purview of CDOT (road bridges) and at one time were movable. No railroad bridges are included in my count.
I have taken the opening dates from the 1973 book "Chicago Public Works: A History."
So how many 100 year old Chicago bridges matching my criteria are there?
I count ten total - nine on the Chicago River and one on the Calumet. In chronological order they are: Cortland St (1902); Division St (1904); Cermak Rd (1906); Kinzie St (1909); Washington Blvd (1913); Grand Ave (1913); 92nd (Ewing Ave - 1914); Chicago Ave (1914); Jackson Blvd (1916) and Lake St (1916).
This group consists of three 1st generation Chicago-type bascules (Cortland, Division, and Kinzie bridges); five 2nd generation Chicago-type bascules (Washington, Grand, Ewing (92nd), Chicago and Lake bridges), one Strauss designed bridge (Jackson), and one rolling lift bascule (Cermak bridge).
The map below provides the location of the current members of the 100 club. Looking ahead, we will next add one downtown bridge to the 100 club in 2019 (W Monroe St).