Traffic Alerts

Throughout the year, the Museum Campus is the site of a variety of special events that can affect traffic and parking. Please check here before each visit to plan around traffic so you can spend the most time with the animals.

Traffic alerts
In addition to any dates listed below, parking at the Soldier Field north garage can be the special-event rate of $25, payable on entry with credit card or cash, on any day without notice.

Through Oct. 6. Lane closures on Lake Shore Drive. Northbound and southbound LSD between Grand and Monroe gets much-needed resurfacing, and the bridge that spans the Drive at LaSalle is being repaired. The two right lanes are now closed, although in some places a third lane might be open for a short distance. Pay attention! In addition, both Randolph entrance ramps are closed as is the Lower Wacker entrance to southbound LSD. Backups can be significant, especially during rush hour, so if you use the Drive, check real-time traffic reports well before you leave home, especially if you have tickets for an early aquatic presentation.

The final concert on the Museum Campus is Thursday, Oct. 4, 7 p.m. The special-event parking rate of $25 is in effect at the garage and all lots on days when there is a concert at Soldier Field or Northerly Island; it usually goes up to $50 four hours before gates open. Concerts draw thousands of additional people to the Museum Campus, so expect extra traffic congestion in the late afternoon or early evening and lots of pedestrians.

Friday, Sept. 21, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. A fundraising walk could affect your access to the Museum Campus at 18th. Play it safe and use McFetridge Drive to get to parking and Shedd.

Saturday, Sept. 22, 3:30 p.m. Chicago Classic football. Expect heavy pedestrian and car traffic. Special-event parking rate will be in effect. You may also experience the same security measures, includng metal detector sweeps of your car, as on Bears game days.

Sunday, Sept. 23, 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Use McFetridge Drive to get to parking and Shedd. It looks like Museum Campus Drive will be closed from Waldron south, including access from 18th, for at least part of the day for the Aids Run and Walk.

Bears home game schedule. See below for traffic and parking specifics.
Sundays at noon: Sept. 30, Oct. 21, Oct. 28, Nov. 11, Nov. 18, Dec. 9, Dec. 16

Sunday, Oct. 7. Chicago Marathon. Stay tuned for directions on how to get to the Museum Campus and Shedd.

Saturday, Nov. 3, noon. International rugby match. Expect heavy pedestrian and car traffic. Special-event parking rate will be in effect. You may also experience the same security measures, includng metal detector sweeps of your car, as on Bears game days.

How is traffic impacted by Bears games and special events?

On the day of Chicago Bears home games and other major special events, we strongly recommend taking public transportation.

If you drive, you'll pay a higher, special-event parking rate as you enter at all available Museum Campus parking facilities. If the game starts at 7:30 p.m., parking will cost $25 until around 1:30, when it goes up to $50. When the game starts at noon, parking will be $50 when Shedd opens. The rate could drop to $25 by 1 or 1:30. For exact day-of information on rate changes, call the Soldier Field north garage at 312-235-7701. Parking will be prohibited on Solidarity Drive. Expect traffic congestion throughout the Museum Campus. Rerouting for traffic entering and leaving the campus is a strong possibility.

If you use the Soldier Field north garage, expect delays on game days as cars are inspected with a metal detector before entering. You'll have to pop your trunk or hatch, too. Add 10 or more minutes to your travel time so that you don't miss your scheduled aquatic presentation.

If you have accessibility needs, please contact us at 312-939-2438 for additional information about getting to Shedd.

Are ATMs available to pay for parking?

Yes, ATMs are available in the Soldier Field North Garage.

Can I still park on Solidarity Drive?

When the special-event fee is in effect, it often means parking on Solidarity Drive is prohibited. When no parking signs are posted on the street, they are strictly enforced.

When are parking price changes announced?

All fee changes are announced ahead of time, especially during the summer. However, rates and hours for all lots and garages are subject to change without notice. All Museum Campus parking is owned by the Chicago Park District and managed by Standard Parking. For the most current parking information, visit

If I decide not to drive, how can I get to Shedd?

Public transportation is the best way to get to Shedd. Whether you start on Metra or take CTA all the way, you'll arrive within steps of our door! Go here to plan your route.