The breathtaking bi-annual phenomenon known as “Chicagohenge” will be at its most visible in the coming week, with the vernal equinox taking place on Monday afternoon.
Chicago’s symmetrical street grid lines up with the city’s sunrises and sunsets, creating the name of the phenomenon that is inspired by similar events in other cities.
The event occurs specifically near the autumnal and vernal equinoxes, when the sunrises and sunsets appear unobstructed between the city’s buildings.
New York City, Toronto and Montreal all experience similar events, locally known as “Manhattanhenge“, “Torontohenge” and “Montrealhenge” respectively.
As it is described by Adler Planetarium experts, Chicagohenge marks the point when the sunrise or sunset happens almost precisely between buildings on Chicago’s east- and west-facing streets.
The gorgeous views will be best visible along the street grid just after sunrise and just before sunset, with the sun most closely aligning with the city’s grid between March 20 and March 23.
The vernal equinox will occur at 4:24 p.m. CDT on Monday, March 20.
Some popular downtown spots for the phenomenon include intersections between Kinzie Street and Madison Street, though looking down any straight east-to-west street should give a good view of the phenomenon.
“Finding a place to spot Chicagohenge is a no-brainer! Simply find one of Chicago’s east-west facing streets, plop a seat, and enjoy the view,” the Adler Planetarium stated.
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