Chicago Skyway
The Chicago Skyway, also known as Chicago Skyway Toll Bridge System, is a 7.8-mile (12.6 km) toll road in Chicago, Illinois, United States, carrying Interstate 90 from the Indiana Toll Road to the Dan Ryan Expressway on Chicago's South Side leading into the Chicago Loop. The main feature of the Skyway is a 1/2-mile (800 m) long steel truss bridge, known as the "High Bridge". The bridge spans the Calumet River and Calumet Harbor, a major harbor for industrial ships. The main span is 650 feet (200 m) long, provides for 125 feet (38 m) of vertical clearance, and is the highest road in Chicago. Between 2001 and 2004 authorities spent $250 million (USD) to rebuild much of the Skyway. As a result of a yearly increase in tolls, the current rate for passenger cars and other two axle vehicles is $3.50, with higher rates for vehicles with multiple axles. A discount is given during the overnight hours for vehicles with three or more axles. This 50 cent increase went into effect on January 1, 2011. The bridge is heavily documented by the Library of Congress Historic American Engineering Record Survey number HAER IL-145. The survey consists of nearly 30 data pages and 21 black and white images.

The Chicago Skyway was originally known as the Calumet Skyway. It cost $101 million (1958, $753 million in 2008) to construct and took about 34 months to build. Nearly eight miles of elevated roadway, the Chicago Skyway was originally built as a shortcut from State Street, a major north-south street on Chicago's South Side that serves the Loop, to the steel mills on the Southeast to the Indiana state line at where the Indiana Toll Road begins. Later, when the Dan Ryan Expressway opened, the Chicago Skyway was extended west to connect to it. There are only two eastbound exits east of the toll barrier, whereas there are four westbound exits west of the toll barrier. The Chicago Skyway opened to traffic on April 16, 1958. In the 1960s, the newly constructed Dan Ryan Expressway and the neighboring Calumet Expressway, Kingery Expressway and Borman Expressway provided free alternatives to the tollway, and the Skyway became much less used. As a result, from the 1970s through the early 1990s, the Skyway was unable to repay revenue bonds used in its construction. Traffic volumes have rebounded in recent years, (to 47,700 vehicles per day) partially because of the construction of casinos in Northwest Indiana, along with re-construction of the Dan Ryan, Kingery and Borman Expressways. The city of Chicago claims a record number of motorists used the Skyway in 2002. In 2003 and 2004, the city of Chicago initiated a $250 million project to rehabilitate and widen the Skyway. The project involved extensive work on the cantilever span and its approaches that included replacing the bridge's structural steel, rebuilding the piers that support the structure, and reconstructing the bridge deck. Because the city of Chicago required the Skyway to remain open during construction, engineers had to construct temporary bridge piers that would bear the load of the bridge and its traffic while new piers were built. Once ready, the bridge was lifted up onto the temporary piers using 600 ton hydraulic jacks, the old piers were removed, and new ones were built. Crews also devised innovative methods for replacing the bridge's structural steel, replacing steel members one at a time. This process involved installing hydraulic chords around the component to be replaced. The bridge load was then transferred to the hydraulic chord, the steel member was removed and a new steel member was then installed. Recently, major construction on both the Kingery and Borman expressways has increased traffic on the Skyway, as well as the presence of riverboat casinos in Hammond and East Chicago, Indiana. In June 2005, the Skyway became compatible with electronic toll collection, with users now able to pay tolls using I-PASS, I-Zoom, or E-ZPass transponders. There is no discount for using a transponder. The Chicago Skyway was a part of the New York-Chicago Toll Road system. The city of Chicago's Department of Streets and Sanitation formerly maintained the Chicago Skyway Toll Bridge System. A transaction that gave the city of Chicago a $1.83 billion dollar cash infusion leased the Skyway to the Skyway Concession Company (SCC), a joint-venture between the Australian Macquarie Infrastructure Group and Spanish Cintra Concesiones de Infraestructuras de Transporte S.A., which assumed operations on the Skyway on a 99”“year operating lease. SCC will be responsible for all operating and maintenance costs of the Skyway but has the right to all toll and concession revenue. The Triple-A bond insurer Financial Security Assurance Inc. (FSA) has guaranteed $1.4 billion of senior bonds to provide long-term funding for the privately operated Chicago Skyway. On June 30, 2006, this same joint-venture assumed responsibility for operating and maintaining the adjacent Indiana East”“West Toll Road for $3.8 billion. The agreement between SCC and the city of Chicago marked the first time an existing toll road was moved from public to private operation in the United States. Historically, the Chicago Skyway was signed as, and was widely considered to be part of, I-90 from the mid-1960s forward. However, around 1999, the city of Chicago realized they had never received official approval to designate the Skyway as I-90. The city subsequently replaced most of the "I-90" signage with "TO I-90" signage. However, the Illinois DOT has always and continues to report the Skyway as part of the Interstate system, and the Federal Highway Administration apparently still considers the Chicago Skyway an official part of I-90. The Skyway's official name, referring to it as a "toll bridge" rather than a "toll road", is the result of a legal quirk. At the time of its construction, the city charter of Chicago did not provide the authority to construct a toll road. However, the city could build toll bridges, and it was found that there was no limit to the length of the approaches to the bridge. Therefore, the Skyway is technically a toll bridge with a six-mile-long approach. This also is part of the reason that there are no exits available until after one has crossed the bridge and paid the toll.

Exit list
The entire route is in Chicago, Cook County.

Mile # Destinations Notes 101 I-90 west / I-94 west ( Dan Ryan Expressway) ”“ Chicago Loop Westbound exit and eastbound entrance 102 State Street (0 East/West) Westbound exit and eastbound entrance 103 St. Lawrence Avenue (600 East) Westbound exit and eastbound entrance 104 73rd Street Westbound exit and eastbound entrance 105 Stony Island Avenue (1600 East) to Lake Shore Drive Westbound exit and eastbound entrance 106 Jeffrey Blvd. (2000 East), 84th Street Eastbound entrance 107 87th Street Westbound exit Chicago Skyway toll plaza Toll $3.50 108 Anthony Avenue (2800 East), 92nd Street Eastbound exit and westbound entrance 110 US 12 / US 20 / US 41 (Indianapolis Boulevard) Eastbound exit and westbound entrance I-90 east / Ind. Toll Rd. east to I-80 / I-65 Toledo, Ohio Continuation into Indiana Toll Road


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