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About Navy Pier - Overview

Located on Lake Michigan, just East of Chicago's Downtown, Navy Pier has been a Chicago landmark since it first opened in 1916. Originally designed as both a shipping and recreational facility, the Pier also served as a military training site during two world wars, a venue for concerts and exhibitions, and the temporary home for a once-fledgling University of Illinois' Chicago campus.
Navy Pier, East End
As the Pier fell into disuse during much of the 1970s and 1980s, the State of Illinois and Chicago embarked on a joint plan whereby, in 1989, ownership of the Pier was transferred to the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, the same body which oversees Chicago's McCormick Place. The Authority moved swiftly to redesign Navy Pier into one of the country's most unique recreation and exposition facilities.

Navy Pier now showcases a unique collection of restaurants and shops in addition to unequaled recreational and exhibition facilities - in a setting like no other.