July 23-24 2011

Part 4 of this photo shoot consists entirely of the Chicago area. It's that important. Chicago is one of the 3 American cities (alongside Detroit and New York) where I'd most like to do a close-up Roads Scholaring, but realistically, I didn't have time for it. This picture is southeast on I-90/94.

I-90/94 here is also known as the John F. Kennedy Expressway. We're using the local lanes instead of the express lanes at left.

The Kennedy Expressway approaching Armitage Avenue.

Wrigley!!! Just like the gum!

The Sears Tower was renamed the Willis Tower in 2009 because Willis Group Holdings uses part of the building. Everybody in Chicago still calls it the Sears Tower. This 1,451-foot, 108-story skyscraper opened in 1973. It was the tallest building in the world until Taipei 101 in Taipei was completed in 2004 - only to later be absolutely dwarfed by Burj Khalifa in Dubai (whose construction was beset by bad labor conditions). Contrary to media reports, the Sears Tower was not surpassed by the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur (as these reports used an inconsistent measuring method). The CN Tower in Toronto is taller than the Sears Tower even if you measure both from ground to roof - but building experts don't consider the CN a building, because the shaft from the ground to the observation levels doesn't have floors. Also, there have been plans to paint the Sears Tower silver to make it more energy efficient.

Another view of the Sears Tower and other buildings from I-90/94. The Sears Tower's address is on Wacker Drive. Wacker Drive is mostly a double or even triple-decker street. Chicago probably has more multilevel streets than any other city. Other big cities were already too built-up by the time the concept of multilevel streets took hold, or those cities' planners were too shortsighted to realize they needed them.

Another view of the Sears Tower.

Ohio Street is the big exit from the north side to downtown, as I was told during the legendary Par King trip.

Still the Kennedy Expressway.

The Sears Tower reminds me of the Batman Building in Nashville when I see its antennas poking up like that. Considering Congress's apparent obsession with comic books in the debt ceiling bill, they'd love that!

I assume I-90/94 is still the Kennedy Expressway here.

A short tunnel. It's surprising that Interstates in Chicago don't have more of these, considering how many multilevel surface streets there are.

Approaching I-290 (the Dwight D. Eisenhower Expressway). I-290 is where I-90/94 becomes the Dan Ryan Expressway, a stretch of pavement that opened in the 1960s.

I'm not exactly sure where this is. This could be where the Dan Ryan goes over the South Branch Chicago River.

A final view of downtown.

I-90 and 94 are going to split soon. Here you can see the Chicago Transit Authority commuter train in the median of the Interstate.

A better view of the train in the median.

Now we've lost I-90 and have continued on I-94. The control city on I-57 is indeed Memphis, Tenn. It indeedity-doodledy is.

I have no idea what this is for. But it's a beaut!

We leave the city of Chicago on I-94 and enter neighboring Dolton, Ill. This bridge goes over the Little Calumet River.

East on I-80/94 entering Indiana. (It's also US 6.) We're just south of Chicago, and we cross from Lansing, Ill., into Munster, Ind. Not Monster - though that would be cool - but Munster.

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