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  1. #1
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    Free parking in Chicago for Saturday near Lakefront trail and Downtown

    Rather than spend $15-20, I thought I'd try parking somewhere near downtown for free and riding the bike in. Are there any free saturday meters near the lakefront trail?

  2. #2
    Peddler Seamless's Avatar
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    Depending on the time you arrive. There are several parking lots along north or south LSD at various parks that have no parking meters, such as 31st St. (from there about a 10 minute ride to Monroe harbor). North of McCormick Place to North Ave. most that I recall are metered; there is street parking north of Fullerton in Lincoln Park northward to Diversey but I noticed earlier this week that some of it was roped off for street paving work (don't know if they've finished). Unmetered parking spots are along streets through the park from Belmont north to Hollywood, but they fill up quickly and you may have to drive around for awhile to find one. Be patient, and early. Now that the marathon has passed (and runners aren't meeting along the lakefront to train) and the weather is not so warm it may be easier to find spots.
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    Up on the Down Side CyLowe97's Avatar
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    Is there a possibility to park somewhere farther north or south? Maybe in Hyde Park near U of C? Or up north near Loyola?

    Parking in Hyde Park would put you at the lesser used end of the bike path.

    Where's Signal11? He'd know, I think.

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    I looked at google maps for the 31'st park and it looks like a great location. I will try it tommorrow, hopefully it will not be full. See this:

    http://maps.google.com/maps?q=Chicag...&t=k&z=16&om=1

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    I discovered another cool site, which I will try if the 31'st street lot is full. Looks like the meters near field museum are just 25 cents for 30 minutes, which is almost free in my books, but maybe they all fill up?

    http://maps.cityofchicago.org/mapchi...?Layers=Meters

  6. #6
    nvr
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    I've ridden the south end of the trail enough to know a few spots right along the path. If you drive south of Soldier Field on Lake Shore Drive you can pull off and park for free on 31st, Oakwood, and Hayes. Nice long parking lots, and I've only seen them filled during the summer. Parking gates close at sundown though so you might want to double check the signs they have posted. 31st is only a few miles from downtown, and Hayes is about 7-8 miles from downtown. Oakwood is somewhere in between. Enjoy your ride.

  7. #7
    Up on the Down Side CyLowe97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by duke_of_hazard View Post
    I discovered another cool site, which I will try if the 31'st street lot is full. Looks like the meters near field museum are just 25 cents for 30 minutes, which is almost free in my books, but maybe they all fill up?

    http://maps.cityofchicago.org/mapchi...?Layers=Meters
    How long to plan on riding? Usually a 2 hour limit on meters and anywhere near the museum campus with an expired meter will probably get you a ticket with a quickness.

    Plus, there will be a gazillion people there.

    Check out the lots nvr suggested and save yourself the tourist trap hassles.

  8. #8
    Peddler Seamless's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nvr View Post
    Oakwood [...] Nice long parking lots, and I've only seen them filled during the summer. Parking gates close at sundown though so you might want to double check the signs they have posted. Oakwood is somewhere in between.
    Oakwood, about 3900 S. LSD exit, parking area at least as of a few days ago is still torn up for construction. Maybe 10 spots available in temporary area.
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    More good ones:
    -Exit LSD at Recreation Drive and go north, or at Irving Park and go south. They connect. Big lot is right along the path. Lot is open all night.
    -Lots of free unmetered parking from Montrose to Foster in the park. The path is along LSD at that point, FYI, not over by the lake. Lot is closed when the park is closed (I think 10pm?)

  10. #10
    Senior Member tiztim's Avatar
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    Now that the word's out for great places to park, I'll bet there will be no spaces to find. Good luck.

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    Just got back from Chicago. I parked at the 31'st street park on the lakeshore. I didnt see any sign about the park closing, so I took a chance and left my car there till 7:30 PM and the gates were still open then.. Thanks for the tip!

  12. #12
    that bike nut BikingGrad80's Avatar
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    I go to UIC. There is usually free parking ON Rosevelt west of Morgan or Morgan south of
    Rosevelt or Blue Island south of Rosevelt. From there it would be a 2 mile ride east to get to the lakeshore path.

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