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An impressive pubic space of greenery and architecture, the Millennium Park is considered by many Chicago urbanites as the centerpiece of their city. This favorite city spot is located on a site that was formally owned by the Illinois Central Railroad for nearly 150 years. Before it was converted to a park, railroad tracks were found in the area and in an effort to hide it. Grant Park was built around it, although it failed to hide the unsightly tracks. It was in 1977 that residents proposed to build a park on top of the tracks to mask them, but the government did not support the initiative. The idea of creating a park was resurrected in the late 1990s under the leadership of then Mayor Daly. The park was originally envisioned to break ground in 2000 which gave it its name, but due to the initial contractor who went over budget and missed many deadlines, the park?s opening was pushed to 2004. Nevertheless, the Millennium Park is one of Chicago?s most famous attractions.

There are different interesting architecture and landscape elements found within Millennium Park which host several activities all year round. The most popular of these is the Pritzker Pavilion, a revolutionary modern outdoor concert facility which can accommodate up to 4,000 people with space for additional 7,000 on the park?s Great Lawn. The Pritzker Pavilion is a site to behold with its unique contemporary architecture coupled with other unusual elements. The Pritzker Pavilion is the venue for several concerts and other events. There is also a smaller indoor theatre within Millennium Park called Harris Theatre. It can seat approximately 1,500 guests and is more ideal for more intimate performances such as ballets.

Also found in Millennium Park is the breathtaking Crown Fountain which was designed by a Spanish artist. The water element is made of two 15-meter glass block towers at the ends of a pool. The glass towers show videos of people spitting out water which according to the designer is the modern rendition of the traditional gargoyles. Another architectural and landscape element that will impress visitors is the Cloud Gate. It is one of the biggest sculptures of its kind across the globe measuring 20 meters long by 10 meters high and weighs at staggering 100 tons. True to its name, it serves as the grand entrance to the park wherein people walk below the arch found in the middle of the structure and see deformed images of themselves.

Millennium Park likewise boasts of a 925-foot long passage called the BP Bridge more famously known as the ?Snake Bridge.? It connects Millennium Park to the Daley Bicentennial Plaza and offers visitors an unobstructed view of Chicago skyline and Lake Michigan.

Of course, no park will be complete without a splendid garden and at Millennium Park, it comes in the form of the one-hectare Lurie Garden which is thick with rich floral life.
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