With the NATO summit downtown Sunday through Monday afternoon, don't let the political discourse get you off course.
Some road shutdowns have been announced, but some roads will close intermittently for motorcades, so it's best to take the train instead of the bus this weekend. The CTA said it is prepared to increase its train capacity.
Going Public recommends avoiding traveling downtown if possible, but if you must go, here are some tips for your trips.
Stay on track: The CTA has posted scheduled reroutes for 20 bus lines, mostly those that travel along the lakefront, at transitchicago.com/nato. For unscheduled reroutes, tune into the CTA's Twitter feed, @cta.
Bus Tracker and trip planners only provide information for scheduled routes, not reroutes. For questions about reroutes and service, the CTA said it is extending its customer service call center hours. Riders can call 1-888-YOUR-CTA, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Keep in the Loop: The CTA has been performing track maintenance in the Loop on and off during weekends this past month. There will be no Loop track work this weekend, the CTA said.
Meet the suburban commuters: Suburban commuters will see station closures and enhanced security measures along the Electric District Line and the South Shore Line, which travel between downtown and points south of the city. Metra recommends riders take the No. 3 King Drive bus as an alternative, but there are already three summit reroutes posted on the CTA Web site for the No. 3 route.
Metra riders should consider taking the Red Line—with consideration for this weekend's Cubs-Sox games.
Transportation Cub: The Cubs play the Sox at Wrigley Field on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Red Line trains—typically packed for Cubs games—are generally even more crammed for Cubs-Sox games. Add additional traffic related to the NATO summit, and some riders will be putting the "cross" in Crosstown Classic.
Try to be patient waiting for Red Line trains or try to avoid the Red Line altogether. If the weather is nice, take the Brown Line to Belmont and walk to the field. In some cases, driving may be easier. For $6, fans can park their cars at a DeVry University parking lot, off of Addison Street and Western Avenue, and take a shuttle to Wrigley.
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A weekly dispatch from a CTA station of note
This week: Cicero Pink Line
This Pink Line stop in Cicero has electronic signs, benches and a wide platform. There's some graffiti and garbage along the tracks but it's pretty clean compared to other CTA stations. There are two frustrating features of this stop: The tracks are street-level, which makes it easy for someone to cross onto them, and the entrance at 49th Avenue is exit-only so riders have to hoof it a few extra blocks to get inside the station. Riders could use this extra link to Pink.
Next up: LaSalle/Van Buren.Copyright © 2015, RedEye