A New Years snowstorm began to sweep through the Chicago area, resulting in dangerous travel conditions that disrupted hundreds of flights and triggered closures in the city as it threatened to dump several inches of snow .
Here is the latest news on what is happening in the area as the heaviest snow begins to fall:
4:20 p.m .: Evanston reminds residents of off-street parking options
With several inches of snow expected in the area, the town of Evanston has reminded residents of the free parking options available.
As the city expects to see 5-7 inches of snow, off-street parking is encouraged to provide additional space for the snow plows.
The free parking options are listed below:
- Downtown parking garage, located at 1800 Maple Avenue, until Thursday, January 6 at 11:59 p.m.
- Township of Evanston High School Parking Lots 1 and 1A. Drivers must enter the lots from Davis Street east of Dodge Avenue.
- AMITA Health provides free parking for residents of Evanston in its parking lot, located on Sherman Avenue and Austin Street.
The following municipal car parks are also included:
- Lot 3, 1700 Chicago Ave.
- Lot 4, rue Central at avenue Stewart (spaces with meters only)
- Lot 16, 800/900 Noyes St. on the slopes of CTA
- Lot 24, 727 Main Street
- Lot 25, 1614, avenue Maple (measured spaces only)
- Lot 27, 1621 Oak Ave.
- Lot 51, 927 Noyes St. (meter spaces only)
- Lot 54, Central Street Tube Station
4:06 p.m .: Chicago officials issue alert regarding travel conditions
3:50 p.m .: Chicago Street Department moves to new phase of snow program
As snow hit the city of Chicago on Saturday afternoon, the Department of Streets and Sanitation activated its Phase 3 snow program, bringing the number of salt spreaders citywide to 287.
MAS staff will continue to monitor weather and ground conditions and adjust snow resources as and when necessary, according to a press release from department officials.
Residents are advised to stay in their homes, but if travel is required, they are encouraged to drive according to conditions and reduce speed.
3:00 p.m .: Winter weather warning begins for some counties in Northwest Indiana
A winter weather advisory is taking effect in some counties in northwest Indiana, including Newton and Jasper.
The advisory, which remains in effect until 6 a.m. Sunday morning, warns of accumulations of 1-4 inches as rain turns to snow throughout the afternoon and evening.
2:50 p.m .: Huntley implements a parking ban with more than 2 inches of snow on the ground
2:17 p.m .: Chicago Park District closes parts of the Lakefront Trail
2:00 p.m .: The heaviest snow should begin for some counties
For counties with the first winter storm warning, the heaviest snow is expected to fall between 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.
This includes McHenry, DeKalb, Kane, LaSalle, Kendall, Grundy, and Will counties in Illinois.
2 p.m .: Thousands of canceled flights
More than 1,000 flights were canceled in Chicago on Saturday afternoon as a New Years snowstorm made its way through the area.
As of 2 p.m., O’Hare International Airport had reported 844 cancellations, while Midway Airport had registered an additional 273.
Chicago was reportedly among the worst in the country for vacation cancellations due to winter weather.
12h. More counties now on winter storm warning
The warning begins at 12:00 p.m. CT in Lake, DuPage and Cook counties in Illinois, as well as in Lake and Porter counties in Indiana. Kenosha County in Wisconsin also has a winter storm warning at this time.
The snow, sometimes abundant, could also turn into blowing snow, making travel dangerous, according to the alert. Total accumulations of 5 to 9 inches are expected along with wind gusts of up to 40 mph in the afternoon and evening, particularly along the lake.
The warning remains in effect until 6:00 a.m. CST Sunday.
A winter weather advisory is also in effect for LaPorte County, Indiana at this time. The advisory, which remains in effect until Sunday noon, warns of snow accumulations between 5 and 7 inches, with some places experiencing higher amounts, especially those near Lake Michigan.
9 a.m .: Winter storm warning went into effect
A winter storm warning began at 9 a.m. in McHenry, DeKalb, Kane, LaSalle, Kendall, Grundy and Will counties in Illinois.
It warns of total snow accumulations between 4 and 8 inches with wind gusts of up to 35 mph in the afternoon and evening.
“Travel could become very difficult,” said the alert. “Blowing snow after sunset on Saturday could drastically reduce visibility, especially in open areas.”
The warning remains in effect for these counties until midnight.
8:30 a.m. Chicago Transportation Department deploys hundreds of salt spreaders
At 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, the Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation announced it would activate its “Phase II snow program, deploying 211 salt spreaders in response to a winter system that will bring snow all the way through. day and night “.
The salt spreaders will focus on Chicago’s arteries and Lake Shore Drive before moving to side streets, the department said.