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Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

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Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

I will be traveling on I 90 from Cleveland to Madison for Thanksgiving, and I am wondering about Chicago traffic tomorrow afternoon. Would it be better to bypass the city? if so, which route would you suggest is better- 294 or 355? Thanks for the help!!!!

Chicago, Illinois
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1. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

Run the gauntlet through the city. It usually turns out to be the easiest. Traffic is around 4:00-7:00 but it starts on all freeways so there's no escaping it. Rush hour is rush hour everywhere. Type bypass Chicago in the search engine.

pgo
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2. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

The Kennedy Expressway through downtown will resemble a parking lot from about 3-6 PM. I'd take 294, but it will also have slow spots. Your EZ Pass will work on the I-Pass open road tolls.

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3. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

Being the day before Thanksgiving, all bets are off in terms of traffic. Check AM 780 WBBM every ten minutes on the eights (i.e.10:08, etc) or check a traffic app like http://www.travelmidwest.com

You may run into lake effect snow in northwest Indiana.

Chicago's North...
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4. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

take the 294 up to o'hare, then 90 out to s-burg.... mid-day traffic going northbound *should* be ok, but it's always a crapshoot....

and as always, i can't stress it enough.... tune into AM 780 or FM 105.9 for traffic (and weather) updates every 10 minutes... you should be able to pick up the AM signal pretty far out, so you can fine tune your route as you get closer to chicagoland... if traffic is moving thru the city during your planned passage, go for it as the entire route is FREE till you get out to o'hare/I-90 (northwest tollway)....

yes, the lake effect snow warnings are up.....so it's a real possibility I-80-94 will be a parking lot during the snow event.... again, listen to 780 AM.... if it sounds horrible, you may wanna take a detour way south of the snowbelt....

…chicagoweathercenter.com/2013/…

Edited: 26 November 2013, 16:43
Chicago's North...
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5. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

that all being said about the lake effect, you might wanna route south from the get-go....might get some lake effect off of lake erie as well.... might wanna pick up I-74 thru indy, then come north via I-57, then out to schaumburg.... it'll take you a few hours out of your way, but it might be better than the alternative.......

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6. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

I would look at 294 to I88W to 39/51 North. Pick up 90 in Rockford. Never any traffic through the cornfields and you would avoid the potential O'hare 90W mess.

B.

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7. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

oops, for some reason i thought you were going to schaumburg..... my bad. anyway, yes, avoid o'scare if possible.... if snow is making things horrible along 80-94, take 74 west out of indy, then north on I-39/US-51 from bloomington to madison... and, you'll avoid almost all tolling thru illinois........

Flossmoor, Illinois
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8. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

I live in the South 'burbs and 294 to I88W to 39/51 North is my preferred route to Madison. Maybe a little traffic in spots on 294, but pretty smooth once you're on 88.

Chicago, Illinois
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9. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

I'd do 294 to 290 to 53 to 90 west. That avoids O'hare without the 25 mile detour involved ingoing to 39/51. Traffic on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving is usually terrible so avoid going through the city for sure.

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10. Re: Bypassing Chicago traffic while driving to Madison, Wi

i hope the OP routed south---the bottom of Lake Michigan looks to be a nightmare.......