After London Eye, These $250 Million Glass Pods Are Boosting Tourism In Chicago


Credits: Mark Barfield Architects
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We all know about the London Eye, the giant wheel with glass pods which is one of the most prominent landmarks of London. Chicago is dreaming of a $250million project along the same line, with glass gondolas moving 170 feet above the busy city. Dubbed as the “Chicago SkyLine,” it will transport about 3000 tourists in transparent cable cars every hour.

Credits: Dailymail.uk
Credits: Dailymail.uk

The pods will travel above the Chicago River connecting Riverwalk, Chicago Lakefront, and the Navy Pier in downtown Chicago. It will offer picturesque views of Chicago’s hub and its landmarks while reducing the use of cars. Chicago has about 44 towers that are more than 600 feet in height. If the Chicago SkyLine gets approved, it will become quite a popular spot for tourists.

If the plans are approved, designers estimate that the aerial cars would lure 1.4 million visitors a year to the city. Credits: Marks Barfield Architects
If the plans are approved, designers estimate that the aerial cars would lure 1.4 million visitors a year to the city. (Credits: Marks Barfield Architects)

Marks Barfield Architects and Davis Brody Bond, the designers of the “gondolas,” plan to make their project environment-friendly. Tourists will then be able to visit popular destinations like the Michigan Avenue and Millennium Park without using their cars while reducing the carbon footprint of Chicago significantly.

Credits: Marks Barfield Architects
Credits: Marks Barfield Architects

The glass gondolas will operate all year round, and they will move at the speed of 800 feet/minute across the river in 30-minute intervals. Tourists will be able to enjoy a better view of skyscrapers like the 1,127ft-tall John Hancock Center and the Marina City towers which are shaped like a corn cob.

Credits: Marks Barfield Architects
Credits: Marks Barfield Architects

David Marks, one of the designers for the London Eye built over River Thames, said:

‘The Chicago SkyLine could do for Chicago what the London Eye has done for London and become a very identifiable landmark within the city, driving tourism and prosperity. Gently fitting in and standing out at the same time, it will allow local people and visitors alike to appreciate the city and its world-class architecture from a completely new perspective, stimulating Chicago’s tourism industry. Its design touches the ground lightly and with an environmentally sensitive and delicate presence – like jewels in a necklace – energising the city’s Riverwalk, and attracting the eyes of the world.’

Credits: Marks Barfield Architects
Credits: Marks Barfield Architects

The project is currently awaiting approval, but if it manages to secure $ 250 million and become a reality, it will become a popular tourist attraction in Chicago.

Do you wish to ride over Chicago River in a glass pod? Watch the video below and let us know in comments!

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