For the first time ever, Chicago's United Center will be a polling place on Election Day this year, open to all city residents looking to register to vote, cast their ballot in person or hand deliver a mail ballot.
The arena, which is home to the Chicago Bulls and Blackhawks, is located at 1901 W. Madison St. on the city's Near West Side.
It will be open to all Chicago residents from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Nov. 3 and will provide in-person voting, same-day registration and a drop box to return mail ballots, according to the Chicago Board of Elections.
Anyone looking to vote at the United Center should park in Lot K, the gate off Adams Street, and enter via the South Atrium entrance, officials said.
“We are proud to partner with the United Center to make voting even easier for Chicagoans on Election Day,” Chicago Board of Elections Chair Marisel Hernandez said in a statement Thursday announcing the voting site.
“We’re encouraging everyone to plan their vote – whether that’s by mail, early in person, or in person on Election Day – there are multiple options and we hope Chicagoans will choose the option most convenient for them to vote," Hernandez continued.
“The United Center has long served as a gathering place for our city, and we are proud that it will be used this year as a voting location for the first time in its history," Bulls Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf and Blackhawks Chairman Rocky Wirtz said in a joint statement, thanking city officials and arena staff for making the voting site possible.
"Together, the Blackhawks, Bulls, and United Center are happy to play our part and offer our arena to further civic engagement in our communities and expand voting opportunities for Chicago residents,” they added.
Election officials said all coronavirus safety guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Illinois Department of Public Health will be in place at the United Center as well as other polling locations, including six feet between voting stations, plexiglass dividers, hand sanitizer available and more.
Also new this year, early voting locations in all of Chicago's 50 wards as well as the super site in the city's Loop will remain open to all Chicago residents from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day.
Those locations are:
- Loop Super Site at Clark & Lake - 191 N. Clark St.
- Ward 1 - Goldblatts Building, 1615 W Chicago Ave.
- Ward 2 - Ogden Elementary School, 24 W Walton St.
- Ward 3 - Beethoven Elementary School, 25 W 47th St.
- Ward 4 - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Center, 4314 S Cottage Grove
- Ward 5 - Ray Elementary School, 5631 S Kimbark Ave.
- Ward 6 - Deneen Elementary School, 7257 S State St.
- Ward 7 - Burnham Elementary School, 9928 S Crandon Ave.
- Ward 8 - Olive Harvey College, 10001 S Woodlawn Ave.
- Ward 9 - Curtis Elementary School, 32 E 115th St.
- Ward 10 - Sadlowski Elementary School, 3930 E 105th St.
- Ward 11 - Sheridan Elementary School, 533 W 27th St.
- Ward 12 - Kelly High School, 4136 S California Ave.
- Ward 13 - West Lawn Park, 4233 W 65th St.
- Ward 14 - Edwards Elementary School, 4815 S Karlov Ave.
- Ward 15 - Carson Elementary School, 5516 S Maplewood Ave.
- Ward 16 - Lindblom Park, 6054 S Damen Ave.
- Ward 17 - Southside High School, 7342 S Hoyne Ave.
- Ward 18 - Carroll Elementary School, 2929 W 83rd St.
- Ward 19 - Beverly Arts Center, 2407 W 111th St.
- Ward 20 - Fiske Elementary School, 6020 S. Langley Ave.
- Ward 21 - Turner - Drew Language Acad., 9300 S Princeton Ave.
- Ward 22 - Ortiz De Dominguez Elementary School, 3000 S Lawndale Ave.
- Ward 23 - Dore Elementary School, 7134 W 65th St.
- Ward 24 - Herzl Elementary School, 3711 W Douglas Blvd.
- Ward 25 - Jungman Elementary School, 1746 S Miller St.
- Ward 26 - Casals Elementary School 3501, W Potomac Ave.
- Ward 27 - Suder Elementary School, 2022 W Washington Blvd.
- Ward 28 - Westside Learning Center, 4624 W Madison St.
- Ward 29 - Burbank Elementary School, 2035 N Mobile Ave.
- Ward 30 - Lorca Elementary School, 3231 N Springfield Ave.
- Ward 31 - Falconer Elementary School, 3020 N Lamon Ave.
- Ward 32 - Pulaski Elementary School, 2230 W McLean Ave.
- Ward 33 - Bateman Elementary School, 4220 N Richmond St.
- Ward 34 - Dunne Elementary School, 10845 S Union Ave.
- Ward 35 - NEIU El Centro, 3390 N Avondale Ave.
- Ward 36 - Hanson Park Elementary School, 5411 W Fullerton Ave.
- Ward 37 - McNair Elementary School, 4820 W Walton St.
- Ward 38 - Hiawatha Park, 8029 W Forest Preserve Dr.
- Ward 39 - Sauganash Elementary School, 6040 N Kilpatrick Ave.
- Ward 40 - Mather High School, 5835 N Lincoln Ave.
- Ward 41 - Oriole Park Elementary School, 5424 N Oketo Ave.
- Ward 42 - Maggie Daley Park, 337 E. Randolph St.
- Ward 43 - Lincoln Park High School, 2001 N Orchard St.
- Ward 44 - Inter American Elementary School, 851 W Waveland Ave.
- Ward 45 - Hitch Elementary School, 5625 N McVicker Ave.
- Ward 46 - Truman College, 1145 W Wilson Ave
- Ward 47 - Welles Park, 2333 W Sunnyside Ave.
- Ward 48 - Broadway Armory, 5917 N Broadway
- Ward 49 - New Field Elementary School, 1707 W Morse Ave.
- Ward 50 - Warren Park, 6601 N Western Ave.
These sites will also be open each day before Nov. 3, on weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., if you're looking to cast your ballot early.
If you've requested and received a mail ballot but have not yet returned it, officials recommend hand delivering your ballot to a drop box this close to the election, rather than relying on the U.S. Postal Service, to ensure that it gets to your election authority in time to be counted. All early voting sites in Chicago will have a drop box available, as will several other locations listed here.
If you requested to vote by mail but would prefer to vote in person, you can do so by surrendering that mail-in ballot to an election judge for cancellation at a voting site, then casting your ballot there in person.
If you did not receive your mail-in ballot, you can vote in person by signing an affidavit that you did not receive it or were informed by your election authority that they did not receive your ballot in the mail.
If you're not registered to vote, or need to update your address or change your registration, it's not too late. You can take advantage of grace period registration through Nov. 3 in person at any early voting location or at your polling place on Election Day. To do so, you have to bring two forms of identification, one with your current address (like a utility bill), and be prepared to cast your ballot at the same time.
For more information on voting and what you need to know about this election, check out the Illinois Voters' Guide here.