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.

Sunday, May 26, 5 to 11 a.m. Bike the Drive. Lake Shore Drive will be closed to motorized vehicles in both directions between Hollywood and 57th Street most of the morning. If you can, take public transportation, which will be rerouted to get to the Museum Campus, so allow extra time. If you are driving, here's how to get to Shedd: From eastbound Roosevelt Road, take the entrance ramp to southbound LSD to the 18th exit, turn left under the Drive and take Museum Campus Drive to the Soldier Field north garage or other parking of your choice. From eastbound I-55, follow the detour and barricades to the easternmost lane, which will take you to the 18th exit and the Museum Campus.

Through June 29, Wednesday and Saturday mornings. Scheduled Chicago River bridge lifts. The sailboats are migrating back to the lake, and more than two dozen bridges across the river will be going up and down, stopping traffic for at least 10 minutes at a time. Lake Shore Drive is the last one on the spring migration route, probably sometime between 2 and 2:30 p.m. on Wednesdays, around noon or 12:30 on Saturdays. Plan your arrival to Shedd accordingly. If you do get stuck behind a raised bascule bridge, please make a difference for clean air and water by turning off your engine.

Through July 19. An attraction set up in the south Soldier Field parking lot could occasionally slow traffic at the Lake Shore Drive 18th St. exits for the Museum Campus.

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.