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aboutThings to do in Chicago

Dec 14, 2012 - High rise Chicago

Heading into Chicago on a chartered bus from Bus Charters Chicago, you cannot miss the city’s impressive skyline. The height of Chicago’s buildings has always been a source of pride for the city. A skyscraper is testimony to the skill of the architect and the engineer, and Chicago is home to three of the five tallest buildings in America.

In 1871, the Great Fire of Chicago destroyed most of the city, leaving behind certain structures like the Water Tower still standing. This allowed the city a clean slate for rebuilding, as it were, and it now had the space in which to do it. The biggest problem with traditional structures is that there is a limit to the load which the walls could bear. The higher a building got, the thicker its foundation would have to be, to bear the weight of the floors above it. Chicago building engineers solved this by removing the load from the walls of the building, and designing a load bearing frame that stood apart from the structure itself.

Architects could now reach for the skies, and a building boom in the 1920s saw buildings in Chicago breaking the 10-storey limit, helped along by the development of the Otis elevator. Pushed along by Mayor Daley, a second wave of high rise construction followed in the 70s and 80s. While other cities in America were experiencing a downturn and population flight, Chicago developed its urban center with commercial and mixed use skyscrapers. It was during this period that Chicago gained three of the tallest buildings in America.

A good way to see the Chicago skyline would be with a charter bus from Bus Charters Chicago. Seated in your charter bus, you will be able to see the skyline, and the buildings it contains, both up close and personal, as well and traveling some distance out to obtain the best views. Chicago’s imposing skyline contains some very tall buildings, with very familiar silhouettes.

Sears Tower is the tallest building in North America. Now known as Willis Tower, it was built in 1974 for Sears, Roebuck and Co. There is an observation deck on the 103rd floor, giving visitors a bird’s eye view of downtown Chicago.

The Trump Tower is a recent addition to the Chicago skyline, being completed in 2009. It contains a hotel and residential units. Originally designed to be the tallest building in America, its height was scaled back following the events of 9/11.

The John Hancock Center is a pioneer of several innovative engineering techniques. The structure of the building is exposed, and made part of the architectural detail. This building has an observation deck on the 94th floor, and an excellent restaurant on the 95th.

When visiting Chicago, give Bus Charters Chicago a call and allow us to help you with your transportation needs.