Get ready for traffic delays and massive crowds if you're preparing to head downtown Chicago to ring in the new year.
Thousands of people are expected in the downtown entertainment districts on New Year’s Eve and at Navy Pier for free fireworks displays, according to the city's Office of Emergency Management and Communications.
Several roads and bridges will be closed to all traffic as early as 11 p.m. Tuesday night, and are expected to remain closed until 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.
The following roads and bridges will be affected:
- Upper Wacker Drive between Lake Street and Lake Shore Drive
- Franklin/Orleans Street Bridge
- Wells Street Bridge
- LaSalle Street Bridge
- Clark Street Bridge
- Dearborn Street Bridge
- State Street Bridge
- Wabash Street Bridge
- Michigan Avenue Bridge
- Columbus Drive Bridge
Fireworks will be launched from seven bridges and barges along the main branch of the Chicago River for the event, city officials said.
Additional restrictions for Tuesday are listed below:
- Beginning at 4:00 p.m., sidewalks will close to pedestrians on one side of each of the following bridges: Franklin/Orleans Street Bridge (west sidewalk), LaSalle Street Bridge (east sidewalk), Clark Street Bridge (east sidewalk), Dearborn Street Bridge (east sidewalk), and State Street Bridge (east sidewalk).
- At 10 p.m., the Chicago Riverwalk will close for the evening. No viewing is allowed from the riverwalk.
- Beginning at 11 p.m., anticipate complete closures of the Franklin/Orleans Street, LaSalle Street, Clark Street, Dearborn Street, and State Street bridges to all vehicular and pedestrian traffic.
- Also, at 11 p.m., eastbound Upper Wacker Drive will be closed to vehicular traffic from Lake Street to Stetson Avenue. Pedestrian traffic and viewing from Upper Wacker Drive will be permitted.
- Streets and bridges are expected to reopen to vehicular traffic approximately 10 minutes after the fireworks display or when deemed safe to do so. All bridges and streets are anticipated to re-open by 12:30 a.m. on Wednesday.