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Lookout Point

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Lookout Point
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Lookout Point

Since the earliest days of Northerly Island and Meigs Field, there has been a close association between earth, water, and sky. This historical relationship is reflected best in the elements of the northeastern perimeter of the peninsula, where the Adler Planetarium, 12th Street Beach (one of the oldest in Chicago), and the northern end of runway 36, are all in close proximity to each other.

The Bessie Coleman Park will enhance and build upon this interrelationship by converting much of the existing east side aircraft parking ramp into public space providing access to the waterfront, and features to enhance the visitor experience. This portion of the existing revetment is slated for replacement by the Army Corps of Engineers and Chicago Park District. This work is currently planned to be paid for by the Chicago Park District’s taxpayers, at a cost of $6 million. Instead, this proposal allows for this funding to come from federal airport improvement funds, instead. As part of this work, a new feature, Lookout Point, will be created.

Lookout Point will combine a Lakeside Overlook esplanade with natural features, reached via a disabled-accessible Nature Walk. The esplanade will provide boating tie-ups and ladders, to allow access from the lake, and will incorporate lookout turrets with views of the lake, the airport, and the city skyline. It will also incorporate picnic facilities and climbing rocks.

The shoreline of Lookout Point will be sculpted to allow natural lake wave action to create fanciful natural ice sculptures during winter. It will also incorporate:

bulletSound/Wave Playground* — Devoted to the sounds of the waves and the water where one can play and learn the force of nature.
bulletNature Walk — The location of Bessie Coleman Park along the lakefront provides a natural location for viewing and understanding all that the Lake Michigan shoreline has to offer.

The Nature Walk will incorporate outdoor educational exhibits of the natural history of Chicago’s lakefront. These features will provide opportunities for partnering between Chicago’s natural history institutions and the corporate community.

Lookout Point will be completely accessible for disabled, including wheelchair ramps and ADA-compatible pathways.

* -- Denotes element from 1996 Chicago Park District plan for Northerly Island to be incorporated into Bessie Coleman Park.

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Friends of Meigs Field
P.O. Box 59-7308 , Chicago, IL 60659-7308
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