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. When there's a concert, parking goes up to $50 about six hours before the event. See the full list of Northerly Island concert dates at the end of this listing.

Currently. Balbo is closed through Grant Park.

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.

Sunday, July 21, until 11 a.m. The Lake Shore Drive 18th Street exit ramps in both directions will be closed for a 10K race, as will sections of Museum Campus Drive. From northbound LSD, use Waldron Drive to get to Shedd. Southbound drivers will have to exit at 31st Street, turn around and get back on northbound LSD. Use McFetridge Drive when you leave.

Saturday, Aug. 3, 4:30 pm.. A Bears fan event at Soldier Field means $25 parking all day plus heavy pedestrian and vehicle traffic on the Museum Campus toward the end of Shedd's hours. See below for preseason game dates and parking impacts.

Northerly Island concerts. The parking fee for the Soldier Field north garage goes up to $50 around noon on each date (unless otherwise stated in specific listings above). Expect increased pedestrian and vehicle traffic from late afternoon on along with possible street closures.
July 21, 27, 28, 31, Aug. 10, 14, 17, 30, 31, Sept. 7, 20

Bears preseason games. Soldier Field north garage parking (probably the only kind available) goes from $25 to $50 six hours before game time. Plan your arrival accordingly.
Aug. 8, 7 p.m.; Aug. 16, 6:30 p.m.; Aug 24, 6 p.m.;
Aug 29, 7 p.m.

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.