Metra will again offer weekend express service on the Metra Electric Line from Blue Island to the Chicago Auto Show at McCormick Place to give south suburban residents a fast and easy way to get to the annual car extravaganza. The show runs from Thursday, July 15 to Monday, July 19.
“Providing a convenient way to get to special events like the Chicago Auto Show is just another way we can be My Metra for our customers,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski.
The Metra Electric Line has a station at McCormick Place, providing access to the show. On the weekend of July 17-18, the hourly weekend Metra Electric Line express service from that line’s Blue Island Station will connect with extra weekend trains running between Joliet and the Rock Island Line’s Blue Island-Vermont Street Station. Rock Island Line riders can then transfer at Blue Island-Vermont Street to a Metra Electric Line train that will take them directly to McCormick Place.
Customers can also drive to the Blue Island-Vermont Street Station, where parking is plentiful, and board the Metra Electric express trains. As a further incentive to ride Metra to the auto show, parking fees will be waived at Blue Island during the weekend of July 17-18.
When it’s time to leave the show that Saturday or Sunday, riders can board extra Metra Electric Line trains that will run express every hour from McCormick Place to Blue Island, where they can transfer back to an outbound Rock Island train making all stops from Blue Island-Vermont Street to Joliet. Modified weekend schedules for the Metra Electric and Rock Island lines during the show can be found below:
Customers have a variety of fare options for the special weekend express service. The most convenient is the $7 Saturday or Sunday Day Pass, good for unlimited rides on either weekend day. It can be purchased on the trains or with the Ventra app, which can be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play.
Metra Electric riders on the main suburban line can also take trains directly to McCormick Place. Throughout the Auto Show, most weekday Metra Electric Line trains, including those not normally scheduled to stop at McCormick Place, will make flag stops at the station, which means trains will stop there only if passengers are visible on the platform or riders on the train tell the conductor they want to get off there. See the weekday schedule here. Saturday, July 17, will be the first day that the Metra Electric Line’s Saturday schedule is restored to pre-COVID levels, giving riders even more options.
To get to the show from other Metra lines, attendees should ride to their line’s downtown terminal and transfer to a CTA Green Line train. The Green Line, which requires a separate fare, runs along Lake Street and Wabash Avenue in the Loop and has a Cermak-McCormick Place stop just blocks from the show. The CTA is not operating shuttles from downtown stations to the show.
All attendees can save money by taking advantage of Metra’s Family Fares program, which allows up to three children 11 and under to ride free with an adult. Family fares are available on weekends and summer weekdays.