Today it was 35 below zero with the wind chill factor. The Hawk was kicking and I had to leave the warm confines of my home and head to the loop for several meetings. With parking costing what it does, I didn't want to move my car but still had to get from the Hyatt Regency to City Hall and back. Did I stand outside and try to hail a cab or wait on the cold corners for a bus? No, I took advantage of Chicago’s best secret, the City of Chicago Pedway. I was able to walk, protected from the wind and cold, to my meetings and back.
Some of you are asking, “What is she talking about? I never heard of a Pedway. Is it one of those new things with two wheels that tourist ride on to see the city?” No, that is a Segway and I must say, a great way to see the city, when it is warm outside.
The City of Chicago Pedway is 40 blocks (5 miles) of underground tunnels and overhead bridges that connect the Chicago Loop Central Business District.
The Pedway was developed in 1951, as block long tunnels that connected the Red and Blue line subways at Washington Street and Jackson Boulevard. It was so well used that it was expanded to connect over 50 public and residential buildings, CTA and Metra Stations.
The Pedway is a little city within itself. There are shops and restaurants all along the way. It is a safe way to get around and easy to navigate.
I started at the Hyatt Regency and walked through several buildings before picking up the Pedway. I walked through the Randolph street commuter station, went under the Cultural Center, past Macy’s, Block 37, and on to City Hall. I got to my meeting way ahead of time and was warm and in good spirits. On the way back I took my time and stopped at one of the shops, had some coffee, and people watched. It truly was a new and relaxing experience.
If you are curious about this wonderful underground city, there are tours you can take or just click on the link http://www.cityofchicago.org/content/dam/city/depts/cdot/pedestrian/Pedway/PedwayMap2013.pdf or grab a map and head out on your own.
I would love to hear about your Pedway adventure.
Until next time, keep your EYE to the sky!
Co-host of “The Traveling Eye” Travel Show
HUR Voices Sirius/XM Channel 141 & AM1690 WVON
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