Metra will be adding service on most of its lines and offering a special one-day only $5 unlimited ride ticket to accommodate Chicago Blackhawks fans attending the downtown parade and rally on Thursday, June 18, 2015, to celebrate the team’s success in winning the 2015 Stanley Cup.
The events will begin at 10 a.m. with a parade along Monroe Street from Jefferson to Michigan, followed by a rally at Soldier Field.
The events are expected to draw large crowds and Metra will be adding as many trains as possible and expanding capacity on scheduled trains. Details about extra service and schedule changes on each line are available here. Those schedules are subject to change so riders should check the website before travel.
Riders should be aware that:
- Morning and evening rush-hour trains, as well as trains immediately before and after the event, are likely to be very full.
- Heavy passenger loading is likely to delay trains at least 10 minutes.
- Inbound trains are likely to reach capacity before they reach closer-in stations, and riders from those stations may want to consider leaving earlier.
- Outbound trains may depart early if they reach capacity so riders are advised to allow adequate time to arrive at the station and board the train.
- If necessary, Metra may implement its Union Station south concourse overcrowding plan, which routes passengers to a holding area near the south concourse and to the Great Hall.
Due to the event, bikes and alcohol will be banned from all trains on Thursday. In addition, Quiet Car rules will be suspended during both rush hours.
Starting Wednesday, Metra will be selling a special $5 unlimited ride ticket that will be valid on all trains on Thursday only. The ticket will be available for sale from all ticket agents (but not from ticket vending machines). The ticket can be combined with Metra’s “Family Fares” program, which allows three children age 11 or younger to ride free with each fare-paying adult. Metra highly encourages anyone who is planning to attend the rally to buy the special ticket in advance.
Metra sold nearly 85,000 tickets for the Hawks rally in 2013, representing about 170,000 rides. In total, Metra carried about 425,000 passengers on the day of the 2013 rally, the second highest daily total in Metra’s history and about 46 percent higher than a typical Friday in June.
Metra also will be adding security and increasing its police presence on trains and stations Thursday. Due to the large crowds that are expected for this event, Metra asks riders to limit the number and size of carry-on items.