Transportation in Chicago is available by airplane, public transportation, bus, car, taxi, train, boat, bicycle, and on foot.
The major airport into Chicago is O’Hare International Airport and is situated 19 miles from downtown. Midway Airport also provides transportation into Chicago and is located 11 miles southwest of downtown. Shuttle buses run between O’Hare and Midway and to various points in the city providing air traffic transportation to hotels in the area.
Chicago Transit Authority also provides extensive public transportation including a commuter-rail network and a comprehensive rapid transit train system called the El (Elevated). The El has eight lines that are identified by color and route name and operate 24 hours. The El is Chicago’s quickest way to get around town.
There is also a collection of commuter trains called Metra, which serve the city as well as the suburbs and have 11 lines.
There are 120 miles of designated bike routes that run through the city. Utilizing the bike routes is strongly encouraged by the city as a viable mode of transportation. Cycling tours of Chicago are available at designated locations.
Water taxis can also be used as a mode of transportation to cruise parts of Lake Michigan and the Chicago River for commuters or for sightseeing.
Major bus lines run along the Lakefront toward Lincoln Park from Union Station. Near the O’Hare airport is the Chicago Transit Authority station where Greyhound provides nationwide bus service from Chicago.
Chicago’s Union Station also offers Amtrak with service nationwide. Chicago taxis and limousine services are available throughout the city.
Taxis are available but are not yellow anymore and instead are standard size sedans with illuminated rooftop lights. Rental cars are advised for travel to the suburbs, as automobile traffic is heavy in the city. Chicago streets have metered parking. Road conditions are mostly one-way streets in the downtown area and bottleneck toward the expressways. Some streets also run on a diagonal, while others are used only for street traffic. Lake Michigan can serve as a landmark to guide travelers as they navigate through the city as well as for pedestrians who choose to see Chicago’s many footpaths.