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Chicago - Walk? Cab? Bus? From Soldier Field...


Aug 21st, 2014, 06:59 AM
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Chicago - Walk? Cab? Bus? From Soldier Field...

So my 17 year old daughter and I are going to the One Direction concert at Soldier Field on August 29th. We are staying at the Congress Plaza and would like suggestions as far as whether we can walk to and from the hotel and Soldier Field or if that wouldn't be a good/wise idea and if not, what other suggestions you all might have. We do not have access to a car. Also, please keep in mind that this will be at night time with us walking back to the hotel between 11pm and midnight. Thank you for the suggestions in advance!
smilies79 is offline  
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Aug 21st, 2014, 07:36 AM
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You and tens of thousands of other concertgoers...

What is the distance, about 1 or 1.5mi? Personally, I'd just walk.

If I spotted a free cab I'd take it, but with some many people you could wait in line for a cab longer than it'd take you to walk back.
J62 is offline  
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Aug 21st, 2014, 08:26 AM
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I agree with the above. If the weather is good, it's a pleasant walk through Grant Park. You may even be in time to see one of the light shows at Buckingham Fountain.

You can also catch the Number 146 bus on McFetridge Drive, at the south entrance of the Field Museum, and take it to Michigan/Roosevelt. That reduces the walk to about half a mile.
Citylghts is offline  
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Aug 21st, 2014, 10:38 AM
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If you were wondering whether it would be safe that late at night, there will be many others walking back to Michigan Avenue hotels or parking garages after such an event. Just go with that flow. I would think no issue.
laurie_ann is offline  
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Aug 21st, 2014, 04:16 PM
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Do you feel like walking "that far?" if so, what is the question?
Dukey1 is online now  
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Aug 23rd, 2014, 07:36 AM
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Hi, smilies79. Don't be too concerned. So many of that crowd will be walking back to Michigan Ave. to pick up buses/taxis/cars from the Millenium Park garage, so you will have lots of company. I've walked alone from Michigan Ave. to Soldier Field at around 8 pm once (after dark), to meet up with family after a Bears game. I don't recall the exact walkways, but they were very clear. Through the park and by the wide underpass (of Lake Shore Drive) toward the Shedd Aquarium, the Field Museum and then Soldier Field. It wasn't difficult.

At the end of the Bears game, when I was meeting family, we took a bus from Soldier Field (the bus stands are south of stadium, pretty clearly marked) back to Michigan Ave. but had to wait for a time, but that will be an option for you if you really don't want to walk. It was our option because one in the party was unable to walk a great distance.

You'll be fine. Especially as the crowd will be lovelorn teens and their beleaguered parents. And now I know to avoid South Michigan Ave. that night.
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Aug 24th, 2014, 01:38 PM
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We too will be at that concert and are concerned about getting back to our hotel which is a bit further away. We are staying at the Four Points by Sheraton on the Magnificent Mile (630 N Rush St)Any suggestions????
Thank you in advance
mickandj is offline  
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Aug 24th, 2014, 04:35 PM
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Hi, mickandj.

In your case, I would take the 146 bus. Be sure to get a Ventra card beforehand (this is the pre-paid fare card to ride either the CTA/Chicago Transit authority buses and trains) and load enough money for two on it. You can pay cash on the bus, too, but you'll not get change back if you don't have the exact amount. Also, if you have the ONE ventra card for the two or three of you, you have to tell the bus driver you're using the same card for more than one person. The Driver has to push a button on the fare counter after each "withdrawal" from the ventra card. So go ahead and tap the card when you get on, then say, "I'm paying for him, too." And wait for the driver to signal the go-ahead after he pushes the button.

Ventra cards can be bought at the subway stations - the Grand Ave red line stop has machines, (and that one is near your hotel) or at Walgreens or Jewel-Osco.

At the south end of Soldier Field, there are bus stops, and the 146 will run from Soldier Field west to State Street, then north on State, then east on Randolph or Lake or someplace, then continue north on Michigan Ave.. You can get off at the Grand stop (Grand X Michigan Ave; Grand is around 600 North on maps). Then, you can just walk the block over to the Four Points Sheraton.

Just bring your patience and keep your energy up after the concert. You'll have lots of folks getting on the bus, and it may take a while.

Or... if for some reason, that plan breaks down or you're impatient to catch the bus, you can follow the crowds down to Michigan Avenue, and attempt to catch a taxi, or walk to State Street and catch a northbound bus #29 to Illinois X State or Illinois X Rush, or the same Soldier Field #146) to Michigan X Grand.

The CTA Planner is here.

Don't worry too much. Just get the Ventra cards ahead of time. Keep your patience b/c it will not be a fast return to the hotel. And just ask the people about you if you're really confused how to get back to Michigan X Grand (an easy location for most Chicagoans to direct you to).

Should be fun for you all!
ChgoGal is offline  
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Aug 25th, 2014, 07:40 AM
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At this point, the weather forecast for Friday is not too promising. Of course, any forecast made more than 3 days out is not too accurate, but Chicago has been having a really wet summer this year. Please make sure you take a poncho or something waterproof with you, just in case, if the forecast doesn't change.

IF you get out of the stadium quickly, before most of the crowd, I think you'd have better luck picking up the Red Line ('L) at Roosevelt than accessing a bus. This will entail a walk of a little less than a mile.

Mind you, when you get on the 'L, you'll be packed in like sardines. But you'll have that as well with the bus, because they'll require a full bus (meaning many people will be standing).

How are you going to get TO the concert? Are you taking the #146 or the 'L? Might be a good time to take the Red Line 'L to Roosevelt down and scope out the lay of the land beforehand.

IF the weather is good and you are in good physical shape (meaning that you are used to walking several miles a day at a time), what I would suggest for you to back a substantial distance, instead of waiting in line for a bus or going to the 'L: You can walk north along the Lakefront Trail from the Museum Campus past Monroe Harbor and Buckingham Fountain. At Jackson, you could then turn west and walk to Michigan Avenue. There is a bus stop to the south at Van Buren.

Or you can continue at Michigan & Jackson, walking north past Millennium Park - and perhaps all the way to your hotel. I warn you, though, once you start walking along the Lakefront Trail, through Grant Park and until you get to Michigan Avenue, you will not be able to pick up any public transportation as there are really no access points and it is truly unlikely you'll catch a cab at any point prior to Michigan.

The walk all the way back to your hotel is somewhat more than 2.5 miles. Please keep that in mind.

There should be more cabs available to you on Michigan Avenue, the further away you get from the hubbub, but I wouldn't be looking for any until you are north of Jackson.

The point is: Expect that you'll be spending a lot of time getting back to your hotel from that concert and have patience.
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