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A runner approaches one of the Lake Shore Drive bridge houses on the nearly finished Navy Pier Flyover portion of the lakefront trail, April 30, 2021. (Nick Blumberg / WTTW News)

The long-awaited, sometimes-maligned structure carrying the lakefront trail over Grand Avenue, Illinois Street and the Chicago River has missed its latest target to wrap up in April. But the Chicago Department of Transportation says it’s “very close” to completion.

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Repairs are just getting underway on a stretch of lakefront damaged by a storm in January 2020. (Courtesy of Metropolitan Water Reclamation District)

The repair, expected to take six weeks, will consist of piling 1,500 tons of rocks along the shoreline and building a concrete wall to guard against further erosion.

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A section of open beach is being added to the protected Montrose Dune Natural Area. (Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

Conservationists are celebrating a big win for wildlife along Chicago’s lakefront, where the expansion of a “treasured” natural area will give more room to some high-profile occupants: a pair of endangered Great Lake piping plovers, Monty and Rose.

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A plover parent and chick at Montrose Beach in 2019, courtesy of the Shedd Aquarium. (Credit: Susan Szeszol)

Shedd Aquarium is hosting a pair of cleanup and habitat restoration days at 63rd Street beach, where 12 acres of dunes have attracted piping plovers, among other bird species.  

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Florin Deleanu powerline fishes at Montrose Harbor in Chicago on March 12, 2021. (WTTW News)

This time of year at Montrose Harbor, you’ll see people lining the lakefront with fire extinguishers — but they’re not putting out flames, they’re fishing. Powerlining is a unique fishing style with local roots.

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A file photo of Montrose Beach in Chicago. (WTTW News)

Metered parking is already in place at lakefront destinations like Rainbow Beach, North Avenue Beach, 31st Street Beach, 63rd Street Beach and Foster Avenue Beach. Now it’s coming to Montrose Harbor — and some residents aren’t happy about it.

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Great Lakes piping plovers, like the one pictured, need more protected habitat along Chicago's lakefront, advocates say. (Vince Cavalieri / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

Ald. James Cappleman has joined the chorus of supporters lobbying the Chicago Park District to set aside a section of Montrose Beach as protected habitat for Monty and Rose, Chicago’s beloved pair of Great Lakes piping plovers.

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The view from Montrose Harbor is free, but soon the parking won't be. (Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

The plan, which was approved by the City Council in November, has drawn outrage from residents and organizations who say the cost of metered parking will limit access to the lakefront. A petition against the meters has gathered thousands of signatures.

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South Works. (Eric Allix Rogers / Preservation Chicago)

The lakefront is arguably Chicago’s crown jewel, but that status is threatened, according to Preservation Chicago, which placed the lakefront on its annual endangered list for 2021, citing threats including development of the Obama Presidential Center in Jackson Park and erosion from rising lake levels.

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Nearly a year after lakefront parks were closed due to the coronavirus, officials are set to announce their reopening. (WTTW News)

The Chicago Park District announced Tuesday that lakefront parks and playgrounds will reopen, nearly a year after they were closed due to the coronavirus.

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A new section of the Navy Pier flyover opened Monday, Feb. 1, 2021 over the Chicago River on the east sidewalk of the Lake Shore Drive Bridge. (Credit: Chicago Department of Transportation)

After years of work, pedestrians and cyclists can now stay on the lakefront trail as it crosses the Chicago River – though the full Navy Pier flyover isn’t finished just yet.

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Montrose Beach Dune Natural Area on the left, and the proposed section of Montrose Beach that would be incorporated into the protected area. (Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

Chicago’s birding community is already preparing for the return of Monty and Rose, the piping plovers that captured national attention two summers ago when they made the surprising choice to nest on Chicago's lakefront. But will their favored habitat be secure in 2021?

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The Navy Pier flyover. (WTTW News)

The eagerly awaited and often delayed Navy Pier flyover has been delayed yet again, this time due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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The Navy Pier flyover. (WTTW News)

Chicago’s lakefront trail has been battered by winter storms this year and closed down by the mayor. But there is some good news on horizon: the long-awaited Navy Pier flyover appears to be close to completion.

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Runners enjoy Chicago’s lakefront trail. (WTTW News)

Chicago is facing a lot of unfunded infrastructure needs in the coming years, according to officials. And it’s not just roads, bridges and streetlights that need work. The city’s lakefront is grappling with another year of high lake levels.

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(DesignOil / Pixabay)

As temperatures soar, you might be tempted to jump into Lake Michigan. But with Chicago beaches closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19, water safety advocates say there’s an increased risk of drowning.