October 17, 2022
A group of Epsteiners took a Friday field trip recently to the Riverview Bridge in Chicago, Illinois. Located on Chicago’s north side, the Epstein-designed and engineered, 16-span reinforced concrete structure, is approximately 1010’ long and 16’-0” wide with a 14’ path. The bridge is supported on single column caissons spaced at 60’-0” intervals and has seven horizontal curves, varying from 100’-0” radius to 1600’-0” radius.
Epstein’s design strategy for Riverview Bridge involved the unconventional solution of disengaging the path from the riverbank and elevating the entire structure above the water level. This solution elevates the trail on piers, and locates it within the river, which preserves the maximum amount of vegetation, and riverbank stability, while minimizing scouring and bank erosion. The bridge design also creates a shadow in the river near the bank, which is beneficial for fish looking to escape the heat and predators above.
The group also paid a visit to the WMS Boathouse at Clark Park, designed by Studio Gang for the Chicago Park District. It is located along the Chicago River just south of the Riverview Bridge at Addison and Rockwell. Rowing groups use the boathouse for training and the public can rent boats as well.
The 22,620 square foot complex consists of a two-story mechanically heated and cooled training center, one-story boat storage facility, and a floating launch dock. The main building houses row tanks, ergometer machines, communal space, and an office for the Chicago Park District. Boat storage accommodates kayak and canoe vendors and includes office space, as well as clear span storage for rowing shells and support equipment.
The beautiful day was topped off with a group lunch!