Chicago Weather

Snowstorm Updates: Weather Advisory, Snow Totals, Road Closures and More

A New Year's Day snowstorm moved across the Chicago area Saturday, bringing dangerous travel conditions that halted hundreds of flights and dumped more than 4 inches of snow in some spots.

Here's the latest on what's happening across the area as the snow continues to fall:

9:14 p.m.: Aurora snow team provides update

City officials in Aurora say plow crews have been working throughout the day, focusing on primary roadways and a salting pass on residential streets.

Contractors joined city crews this evening and were expected to focus mainly on residential streets, according to an email update from the city.

With more snowfall expected overnight, the city urges residents to comply with its Snow Parking Ordinance. It requires parking on city streets during or after a snowfall of 2 inches or more.

8:14 p.m.: Winter storm warning canceled for some counties

A winter storm warning was canceled for Kendall and portions of Will counties Saturday night as a winter storm moved through the region.

According to the National Weather Service, a winter storm warning was canceled for Kendall County and northern Will County, but a winter weather advisory remained in effect.

Approximately 3 to 5 inches of snow were expected through Sunday morning in those areas.

7:10 p.m.: Snowfall totals so far

Although the snow likely won't stop soon, snow totals are beginning to come in.

Here are the totals that have been reported to the National Weather Service up until this point.

4:20 p.m.: Evanston reminds residents of off-street parking options

With several inches of snow expected in the region, the city of Evanston issued a reminder to residents about available free parking options.

As the city expects to see 5 to 7 inches of snow, off-street parking is encouraged to provide extra room for snow plows.

Free parking options are listed below:

  • Downtown parking garage, located at 1800 Maple Ave., through Thursday, Jan. 6 at 11:59 p.m. 
  • Evanston Township High School parking lots 1 and 1A. Drivers should enter the lots from Davis Street east of Dodge Avenue. 
  • AMITA Health is offering free parking to Evanston residents in its parking garage, located at Sherman Avenue and Austin Street.

The following city parking lots are also included:

  • Lot 3, 1700 Chicago Ave.
  • Lot 4, Central Street at Stewart Avenue (metered spaces only)
  • Lot 16, 800/900 Noyes St. at the CTA tracks
  • Lot 24, 727 Main St.
  • Lot 25, 1614 Maple Ave. (metered spaces only)
  • Lot 27, 1621 Oak Ave.
  • Lot 51, 927 Noyes St. (metered spaces only)
  • Lot 54, Central Street Metra Station
From the snow to the air, Saturday's snowstorm posed quite a challenge for those traveling across the region. NBC 5's Vi Nguyen reports.

4:06 p.m.: Chicago officials issue alert regarding travel conditions

3:50 p.m.: Chicago's street department shifts to new snow program phase

As snow pummeled the city of Chicago Saturday afternoon, the Department of Streets and Sanitation activated its Phase 3 snow program, increasing the number of salt spreaders throughout the city to 287.

DSS staff will continue to monitor the weather and ground conditions and will adjust snow resources if and when needed, according to a news release from department officials.

Residents are advised to stay home, but if travel is necessary, they're encouraged to drive according to conditions and reduce speed.

3 p.m.: Winter weather advisory begins for some northwest Indiana counties

A winter weather advisory takes effect in some northwest Indiana counties, including Newton and Jasper.

The advisory, which remains in effect until 6 a.m. CT Sunday, warns of anywhere from 1 to 4 inches of accumulations as rain transitions to snow throughout the afternoon and evening.

2:50 p.m.: Huntley implements parking ban with more than 2 inches of snow on the ground

2:17 p.m.: Chicago Park District Closes Parts of Lakefront Trail

2 p.m.: Heaviest snow set to begin for some counties

For counties under the earliest winter storm warning, the heaviest snow is expected to fall between 2 and 8 p.m.

This includes in McHenry, DeKalb, Kane, LaSalle, Kendall, Grundy and Will counties in Illinois.

2 p.m.: Thousands of flights canceled

More than 1,000 flights were reported canceled in Chicago Saturday afternoon as a New Year's Day snowstorm made its way into the area.

By 2 p.m. O'Hare International Airport had reported 844 cancellations while Midway Airport saw an additional 273.

Chicago was reported to be among the worst in the country for cancellations on the holiday due to the wintry weather.

12 pm. More counties now under winter storm warning

The warning begins at 12 p.m. CT in Lake, DuPage and Cook counties in Illinois, along with Lake and Porter counties in Indiana. Kenosha County in Wisconsin also has a winter storm warning at this time.

Snow, heavy at times, could also turn into blowing snow, making travel hazardous, according to the alert. Total accumulations of 5 to 9 inches are expected along with wind gusts of up to 40 mph in the afternoon and evening, particularly along the lakefront.

The warning remains in effect until 6 a.m. CT Sunday.

A winter weather advisory is also in effect for LaPorte County in Indiana at this time. The advisory, which remains in effect until noon Sunday, warns of snow accumulations between 5 and 7 inches, with some locations seeing higher amounts, particularly those near Lake Michigan.

9 a.m.: Winter storm warning took effect

A winter storm warning began at 9 a.m. in McHenry, DeKalb, Kane, LaSalle, Kendall, Grundy and Will counties in Illinois.

It warns of total snow accumulations between 4 and 8 inches with wind gusts of up to 35 mph in the afternoon and evening.

"Travel could become very difficult," the alert states. "Blowing snow after sunset Saturday could significantly reduce visibility, especially in open areas."

The warning remains in effect for these counties until midnight.

8:30 a.m. Chicago transportation department deploys hundreds of salt spreaders

At 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Chicago's Department of Streets and Sanitation announced it would activated its "Phase II snow program, deploying 211 salt spreaders in response to a winter system that will result in snow throughout the day and into the night."

The salt spreaders will focus on Chicago’s arterial routes and Lake Shore Drive before shifting to side streets, the department said.

NBC Chicago/Associated Press
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