A List of the busiest streets and traffic in Illinois

The heavy traffic in Illinois, especially in and around the Chicago metropolitan area, is often cited as one of the state’s most frustrating issues. With a high population density, outdated infrastructure, and harsh winters, drivers in Illinois often face heavy congestion and long delays.

The large population of Illinois, concentrated in the Chicago area, contributes to the high volume of cars on the roads, resulting in long lines of traffic and bottlenecked highways during rush hour. Additionally, some roads and highways in Illinois are in need of repair, leading to construction projects and lane closures that further disrupt traffic flow.

Traffic Volume:

  • Interstates:
    • I-90/I-94: This stretch, particularly from the Dan Ryan Expressway junction to Pershing Road and from Claybourn to West Division Street, carries over 300,000 vehicles daily.
    • I-290: This interstate sees around 220,000 vehicles daily between South Pulaski Road and South Sacramento Boulevard.
    • I-294: Another heavily used route, averaging 212,000 vehicles daily from O’Hare Way to Irving Park Road.
  • Non-Interstate:
    • North Lakeshore Drive/US 41: This scenic route combines with US 41 to see a combined 160,000 vehicles daily from West Fullerton to North Cameron Drive.
    • North McCormick Boulevard: This street carries around 142,000 vehicles daily between West Touhy Avenue and West Devon Avenue.
    • US 53: This route experiences roughly 150,000 vehicles daily from Palatine Road to IL 62.

Pedestrian Foot Traffic:

  • Chicago: As a major metropolis, Chicago naturally holds several contenders for busiest streets for foot traffic:
    • State Street: This iconic shopping destination, particularly the corner of State and Madison, is said to be one of the busiest in the world, seeing millions of pedestrians annually.
    • Michigan Avenue: Another renowned shopping district, attracting large crowds year-round.
    • Lake Shore Drive: Popular for walking, running, and cycling, offering scenic views of Lake Michigan.
    • Other notable streets: Logan Boulevard, North Milwaukee Avenue, Clark Street, West Randolph Street, North Wells Street, Midway Plaisance, and Devon Avenue also see significant foot traffic depending on the specific location and events.