River Still in the Burnham Plan

The river and Friends featured prominently in Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel's announcement for new investments to improve Chicago's Parks. The mayor thanked Friends for our tireless advocacy for the river and the Chicago Riverwalk. Part of the Parks "Building on Burnham" plan includes the addition of river access at almost every mile from the North Side south to Little Village.

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Disinfection Starts on the North Side

At 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, the ribbons will be cut and the switch thrown on to begin the process of sewage effluent disinfection at the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District's (MWRD) O'Brien Water Reclamation Plant located on the North Shore Channel. Friends of the Chicago River and many partners worked tirelessly for more than a decade to reach this day which will have a dramatic impact on ambient water quality.

It is overwhelming to see this major benchmark in water quality improvements come to pass. It is the direct result of Friends’ advocacy and demonstrates it take a sustained effort to get things done.


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Vacancy: New Osprey Platforms

In the Chicago region and across the country, ospreys are making a comeback from the devastating impacts of pesticide use in the mid-1900s. Friends of the Chicago River is in the midst of a three-year project to boost these birds' reproductive success by building a series of platforms to attract nesting pairs. Read on for a photo-filled description of the process. 

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Chicago River Fishing Can be Year Round

When Friends of the Chicago River and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources released 195,000 juvenile channel catfish into the river we knew they were joining fish of their own kind and over 70 other species distributed downtown, up north, in the Chicago Sanitary & Ship Canal, and all along the Little Calumet. Among the many native species are sport fish like large mouth bass and a variety of sunfishes.

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Lathrop Homes Redevelopment Promises Water and Wildlife Benefits

The developers of Lathrop Homes are closer to digging and their plans revealed to Friends' Planning Committee in January show a natural river edge alive with opportunity for wildlife and for people to share the river. Last fall Friends walked the riverbank with Related Midwest designers who promised a soft river-edge alive with native flowers, shrubs, and trees along with other habitat benefits.

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New Osprey Nest Goes Up at the Botanic Garden

On Friday, January 29 Friends installed the second of at least six planned osprey nesting platforms at the Chicago Botanic Garden just north of Dundee Road.  The Botanic Garden, which is hydrologically part of the Skokie Lagoons complex, is an excellent location for a nest.

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WYCC Brings TARP and Stormwater Alive

This fall WYCC Channel 20 taped a comprehensive segment that outlines how the Tunnel and Reservoir Plan  (TARP, aka Deep Tunnel) functions to help people understanding the complex system and the need for green infrastructure.

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Google Street View for the River: Take a Virtual Tour Down the River

Friends of the Chicago River is thrilled to announce that the Chicago River has joined some of the few rivers in the world including the Thames, the Seine, and the Hudson in being Streetviewed by Google. On an expedition initiated by Friends’ board member, Kevin Hartman, Google’s head of analytics, members of the “Streetview” team captured the mystery and the majesty of the river when drivers took their tools to the water where they traveled the Main Stem, up north around Goose Island, and down into Bubbly Creek to bring the river to life for people around the world.

Press Release 1.21.16


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Channel Catfish Coming to a Riverwalk Near You

Plans are underway for a new exhibit along the Chicago Riverwalk designed by Friends of the Chicago River to educate the thousands of passersby about the Chicago River and what lives in it. The exhibit is intended to complement the Friends and Illinois Department of Natural Resources project which included the installation of 400 constructed channel catfish nesting cavities and the release of 195,000 juvenile catfish.

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