Marina City residents barred from iconic balconies in huge ‘summer bummer’

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Marina City, designed by Bertrand Goldberg and built in the mid-1960s, received landmark status from the Chicago City Council on Feb. 10, 2016. (E. Jason Wambsgans / Chicago Tribune)

RIVER NORTH — It’s shaping up to be one bummer of a summer for Marina City, where some residents have been banned from their balconies.

City inspectors discovered trouble with nearly 2,000 balcony railings on the iconic corncob-shaped towers, a complex  once considered a “seedy crumbling wreck” that a Cook County judge predicted would “fall in the Chicago River,” but recently was tagged a city landmark.

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While crews work to fix 1,920 handrail posts, 1,300 balusters and 1,020 bottom rails, some residents have been banned from using the balconies for four months or longer.

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