Explore Inside Chicago's Famous Movable Bridges
If you’ve ever been on the Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise aboard Chicago’s First Lady Cruises, you’ve most likely learned about Chicago’s famous movable bridges. Within the city limits there are a total of 52 movable bridges with 43 of them still operable. During your cruise, you would have passed underneath nearly half of them, many of which are the Trunnion Bascule style. However, if the cruise peaked your interest and you wanted to learn more about the famous bridges, then head down the riverwalk to the McCormick Bridgehouse Museum.
The McCormick Bridgehouse and Chicago River Museum celebrate the Chicago River and its world-famous movable bridges. Beginning at the river level and spiraling five stories up, the McCormick Bridgehouse & Chicago River Museum provide a one-of-a-kind opportunity to explore a historic landmark bridgehouse.
At river level, visitors can view the massive gears of Chicago’s most famous movable bridge and then journey through time as they experience the story of the Chicago River. Once at the top of the Bridgehouse, visitors are treated to a magnificent 360 degree views of the city and river, and will gain a whole new perspective on the beauty and complexity that is Chicago.
Exhibits celebrate Chicago’s river and world-famous movable bridges, and visitors learn why it is important to protect the river and how to participate in its renaissance. On bridge lift days every spring and fall, the museum’s gear room truly comes to life, giving visitors a behind-the-scenes look at the moving gears as they lift the massive Michigan Avenue bridge leaf, allowing for boat traffic to pass through the heart of Chicago - a spectacular, deeply authentic Chicago event.
The museum is open Thursday-Monday from 10:00am to 5:00pm between May 12th and October 29th. Ticket prices vary based on age, but on Sundays they do offer free admission. To view additional information about the McCormick Bridgehouse & Chicago River Museum visit their website, bridgehousemuseum.org.