Chicago Department of Transportation

Wacker Drive Advance Utilities

Chicago, IL

This $200 million project involved the reconstruction of both upper and lower levels of the Wacker Drive viaduct. The newly renovated structure replaced the previous structure; repaired fixed spans of the adjacent bascule bridges; made intersection and traffic signal improvements; implemented new ingress and egress between lower and upper Wacker Drive; used construction staging; maintained vehicular and pedestrian traffic; and provided roadway lighting and streetscaping.

In order to accommodate this roadway/structure project, an advance utility contract was let prior to the main contract to facilitate completion of extensive utility relocation required to accommodate the mainline construction. In addition to utility relocation, 6,800 LF of new watermain was installed, and existing ComEd and MWRD structures were modified. Significant coordination ensured continuous service to the many businesses along Upper and Lower Wacker Drive. The Benesch team worked with the Chicago Department of Water Management to develop staging for one of the most congested utility corridors in the City; comply with City and State standards; obtain permits; and conduct complex strategic connections for the new systems.

Project highlights

  • 6,800 LF of new watermain
  • Modification to existing ComEd and MWRD structures
  • Utility relocation
  • Extensive local coordination with the City and businesses to maintain access
  • Complex utility staging for one of the most congested utility corridors in the City of Chicago