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Happy Birthday, Mr. Expressway

1. "After 50 years, Kennedy opening recalled with fondness, fear," the Tribune reports. "A milestone in Chicago development, expressway changed face of city."


"It was at 11 a.m. on Nov. 5, 1960, beneath a bunting-draped Lake Street overpass, that Illinois' political powerhouses, Gov. William Stratton, Mayor Richard J. Daley and Cook County Board President Dan Ryan, officially opened the Northwest Expressway.

"Although it followed by only weeks the completion of the Congress Street Expressway, now the Eisenhower, Stratton called it 'the greatest highway in America.'

"Three years later, the expressway would be renamed for President John F. Kennedy, a week after he was assassinated on Nov. 22, 1963. That was only fitting because the expressway shared a special link with the young president who captured the city's heart. During Kennedy's three visits to Chicago, hundreds of thousands lined the route to watch his motorcades.

"Construction of the Kennedy -it cost $232.3 million -- became the foundation for Daley's reputation as a master builder and helped transform the small suburban Orchard Field into one of the world's busiest airports, O'Hare."

2. The Kennedy on Facebook.

3. The Kennedy on Flickr.

4. The Kennedy reviewed on Yelp.

5. The Kennedy on Wikipedia.


"The Kennedy was originally constructed along the route of Avondale Avenue, an existing diagonal street, and the northwest railroad corridor, in the late 1950s and completed on November 5, 1960. Originally named the Northwest Expressway for its general direction of travel, the Chicago City Council voted unanimously on November 29, 1963 - one week after the assassination and death of President Kennedy - to rename the highway the John F. Kennedy Expressway."

6. Tribune photo gallery.

7. The Rostenkowski Myth."

8. The Virgin Mary.


9. Deerhunter plays under the Kennedy in September.


10. A Blue Line train oputpaces traffic on the Kennedy.


11. The Kennedy inbound at night.


12. Salsa Kennedy.


13. Kennedy Timelapse (via Chicagoist).


14. Tribune, Nov. 30, 1963: "Northwest Expressway Is Renamed for Kennedy."

"The Northwest expressway was renamed John Fitzgerald Kennedy expressway by the city council yesterday.

"The council suspended its rules to enact the two paragraph ordinance, which made the name change effective immediately, and also ordered the department of streets and sanitation to make necessary changes in expressway signs as quickly as possible.

"Ald. Thomas E. Keane [31st], administration floor leader, moved for suspension of council rules to permit immediate adoption. He said this would be a fitting tribute to the late President Kennedy, who rode the route many times and called it one of the greatest highways in the United States.

"Nine other aldermen joined in brief speeches urging enactment. Included were two Republicans, Jack. I. Sperling [50th] and Edward T. Scholl [41st]. No alderman voted against the change."


Comments welcome.


Posted on November 8, 2010

MUSIC - Chief Keef Changed The Industry.
TV - Vizio's Best Product Is You.
POLITICS - UIC: Soda Taxes Work.
SPORTS - More McCaskey Malpractice.

BOOKS - All About Poop.


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