Chicago offers on-street parking, parking garages, and hotels for all your parking needs. The city also offers Park & Ride facilities that conveniently connect you to parking and public transportation to your downtown destination. Apps like ParkingPass have made parking in Chicago much easier by allowing you to locate nearby parking options and make early reservations.
- Finding on-street parking in Chicago and how much it costs
- Where to find parking garages in Chicago
- Finding free parking in Chicago
- Where do I find Park & Ride lots in Chicago?
- Other FAQs
Finding on-street parking in Chicago and how much it costs
On-street parking in Chicago is metered and rates range from $2.00 to $6.50 per hour. Common areas with on-street parking include:
- Neighborhoods outside of downtown, specifically between Roosevelt Avenue, Halsted Street, and North Avenue. Parking rates are around $2.50 per hour.
- The Central Business District outside the Loop, between Roosevelt Road, North Avenue, Lake Michigan, and Halsted. The rate is about $4.75 per hour.
- The West Loop, bounded by the I-290 Expressway, Grand Avenue, Halsted Street, and Ashland Avenue. Parking rates are approximately $4.75 per hour.
- Within the Loop, bounded by Lake Michigan, Wacker Drive, and Congress Parkway. On-street parking costs around $7 per hour.
During your mission on where to find on-street parking in Chicago, you can use the ParkMobile app to locate metered parking spots.
Where to find parking garages in Chicago
Parking garages are convenient, especially in high-traffic areas like downtown Chicago. Below are some convenient parking garages near popular destinations throughout the city.
- Millennium Park Garage at 5 South Columbus Drive. Parking here allows you to explore Millennium Park to see the famous Cloud Gate statue, go ice skating, or relax in the beautifully landscaped gardens.
- The Willis Tower Garage is located at 241 South Franklin. Parking at Willis Tower allows you to fully experience its status as one of the world’s tallest buildings and enjoy the panoramic views of the city from its Skydeck.
- The Lincoln Commons Garage, located at 2316 North Lincoln Avenue, provides easy access to Lincoln Park, known for its exceptional dining and shopping experiences.
- The Axis Garage at 441 East Erie Street is located within walking distance of attractions such as the Navy Pier, the Chicago Children’s Museum, and the Museum of Contemporary Art
- The Magnificent Mile on Michigan Avenue offers many garages with different rates depending on the type of parking. These include the Water Tower Place Parking Garage, Ontario – St. Clair Parking, and the John Hancock Center.
Apps like SpotHero can help you find parking garages in Chicago, and more importantly, parking near you. These apps allow you to reserve a parking space in advance.
Where to find free parking in Chicago
Free parking can be found around Fulton Market, a busy dining and shopping area about a mile west of downtown and the Loop. Many employees in these businesses leave by mid-afternoon, making it easier to find available free parking spaces during evenings and weekends than during the day.
The United Center west of the Fulton Market District also offers free street parking if you arrive early. There are standing zones all over the city where you can park for free for as little as 15 minutes if your hazard lights are activated.
Free parking in Chicago is offered by some of the meters that operate on-street parking on Sundays. Be sure to read the parking signs before parking your vehicle, as the designated hours for free parking may vary.
Where can I find Park & Ride lots in Chicago?
The Chicago Transit Authority offers daily authorized Park & Ride lots at various L Stations for travelers who wish to take the train into the city and its surrounding areas. Park & Ride parking lots allow travelers to park their vehicles and transfer to public transportation or rideshare services.
- Customers at Park & Ride locations near Blue, Brown, Green, Orange, and Pink Line stations can now use parking.com to make payments.
- The Pace Suburban Bus company Park & Ride lots include Blue Island near 127th and Kedzie Avenue, as well as Bolingbrook at 120 E Old Chicago Drive.
- Metra Rail has 3 Park & Ride lots. The permit lot and 2 daily lots are situated at 508 Main Street and 542 Main Street in downtown Chicago.
Is parking free on weekends in downtown Chicago?
Yes, you can park for free at downtown Chicago’s metered spaces on Sundays and holidays. Payment stations in areas offering free parking don’t process payments on Sundays. Moreover, downtown areas are less congested on weekends, making it easier to find an open spot to park your car.
How long can I park on-street in Chicago?
Most metered on-street parking spaces in Chicago have a 2-hour limit. Exceeding this limit will lead to a ticket. If you park in a space with a 2-hour limit, you must move your car after 2 hours, even if you pay a meter extension fee. However, the time limit varies by area. Also, Chicago utilizes mechanical street sweepers that call for temporary parking restrictions when active.
Be aware of the regulations in the area before parking to avoid getting a ticket. Parking tickets can range from $50 to $150, depending on the time exceeded and whether your vehicle was towed. Exceeding the time limit can also make it more difficult to park in that area in the future.
To avoid exceeding the time limit, set a timer on your phone or watch to remind you to move your vehicle. Most unmetered street parking spaces can be used for overnight parking, except during the coldest winter months between December 1st and March 31st.
What are the parking rates for garages in Chicago?
Different parking garages in Chicago have different rates depending on their location and the type of parking they offer:
- Garage parking varies from $8 to $25,
- Valet garage parking varies between $10 and $35.
- Uncovered garage parking services range between $10 – $16.
- Valet uncovered parking services range between $10 – $17.
Popular parking garages include:
- Monroe Building Garage along South Dearborn Street, charging around $22.
- West Monroe Street Garage, charging approximately $20.
- Citadel Garage along South Dearborn Street, which offers daily and monthly parking services on a first-come first-serve order.
- The West Garage and East Garage in the Navy Pier, which also provide charging stations for electric vehicles. They offer discounted parking for off-site garages when you reserve a spot online.
Apps such as SpotHero can help you compare parking rates at different garages to find one within your budget.
Are there any hotels in Chicago that offer free parking?
There are hotels both downtown and in the suburbs of Chicago that offer free parking as a complimentary service to their guests. They include:
- The Ohio House Motel in River North on N. LaSalle Street. The hotel is conveniently located just a few blocks from the Chicago River and The Loop.
- The Chicago South Loop Hotel. It has three parking lots with free parking, and you can reserve a spot in advance.
- The Best Western Plus Hyde Park Chicago Hotel is in the suburbs. From here, you can easily take public transportation to downtown Chicago, which is just a few blocks away.