Learn the Route through Lower Wacker Drive

Traveling from the North Side near the lake to the West Side or vice versa? One route is best: Lower Wacker Drive.

Older Chicago residents doubtless know this avenue, made famous by the chase scene from the movie, “Blues Brothers.”

Newer Chicago residents might not.

Here are directions:

Traveling south on Lake Shore Drive get off at Grand Avenue/Illinois Street/Navy Pier/Wacker Drive.  Bear left off the ramp and take the road under Lake Shore Drive. Follow the sign to I-290 and immediately after crossing the Chicago River turn right.  Then follow a second sign to I-290 and bear left to enter Lower Wacker Drive.

Drive times vary of course.  But it takes five or six minutes to get to the other end.

As the end approaches there will be signs instructing drivers to bear left for Harrison Street or bear right for I-290.  Bear right and a ramp will lead onto the Eisenhower Expressway (I-290).  That will lead to the West Side and Western Suburbs.

Heading the other way: take the ramp off I-290 for Wacker Drive/Franklin Street and follow the signs to Wacker Drive, then Lower Wacker Drive.  Upon emerging from the tunnel’s east end follow signs to Lake Shore Drive/41 North.

Choosing this route bypasses many stop lights between Grand Avenue and the end of Ida B. Wells (formerly Congress) Parkway, which leads to the beginning of I-290.

It tends to be a big time saver.

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