Remembering the Great Loop Flood 30 years later
Exactly 30 years ago today, Chicagoans woke up to news of massive flooding in the Loop.
Why it matters: The flood would eventually shut down power to much of downtown, halt subway service, and lead to the evacuation of 250,000 people.
- It closed down the Board of Trade and Mercantile Exchange, sending ripples through global stock markets.
- By the end, the Great Loop Flood of 1992 caused $2 billion in damage.
Flashback: City crews accidentally punctured an underground tunnel during construction months before the flood.
- Almost a week after the flooding, crews sealed the hole with concrete after previously trying rocks, cement chunks, and — no joke — mattresses.
- Transportation Commissioner John LaPlante, who oversaw bids to fix the hole, was fired, but subsequent reporting suggests he was not entirely to blame.
Go deeper: Relive the disaster with this terrific WBEZ Curious City episode. Reporter Jesse Dukes suggests "it's the most Chicago story ever told."
- Or watch it in a new WTTW "Chicago Stories" documentary about two big downtown disasters: the flood and the Iroquois Theater Fire.
More Chicago stories
No stories could be found
Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Chicago.