November 17, 2023

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Alderman Reilly Reports

Alderman Reilly votes "No" on 2024 Budget

On Wednesday, November 15, Alderman Reilly cast votes against the 2024 City Budget, proposed by Mayor Johnson. Although the proposed budget did not include a property tax increase, it also did not create new revenue streams, reduce spending, or deploy cost-saving strategies. 

The Mayor’s budget fills a $538 million shortfall by declaring a surplus of Tax Increment Financing (TIF). Historically, TIF funding is used to promote public and private investment throughout the City. Since this is a one-time funding source, the Mayor’s reliance on the TIF surplus to “balance” the budget means that next year he will undoubtedly have to raise taxes. 

Additionally, the Mayor’s budget allocates $150 million (four months of spending) to house, feed, and care for new arrivals. Mayor Johnson has admitted that this amount is not enough to cover the cost, given the influx of people arriving in Chicago on a daily basis. In order to continue supporting new arrivals in 2024, the Mayor’s Administration will need to reallocate funding from City services.

Despite Alderman Reilly’s opposition, the final vote on the tax levy was 40-9, with the budget passing 41-8. Alderman Reilly could not support this fiscal irresponsibility, however, he is hopeful that the Mayor will start to work collaboratively to craft future budget proposals with an eye toward building a smaller, less costly and more efficient city government.

Thank you to the many hundreds of neighbors who called and emailed to share feedback and express concerns about the 2024 City Budget.

2023 Holiday Festivities begin November 17

The Holiday season kicks-off next weekend with the annual City of Chicago Christmas Tree Lighting, Christkindlmarket opening, and Magnificent Mile Lights Festival.

Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony - Millennium Park; November 17th

The 110th Annual City of Chicago Christmas Tree, a 45-foot Colorado Blue Spruce was donated by the De La Cruz family of Darien, IL. The Colorado Blue Spruce will be illuminated during the Tree Lighting Ceremony on November 17, which will be emceed by Irika Sargent and Joe Donlon of CBS 2 Chicago. This year’s Tree Lighting Ceremony, presented by Powering Chicago with leadership support from the Millennium Park Foundation and the Pritzker Foundation, will include multiple viewing locations with screens and concessions in the Park. To prepare for the ceremony, Washington Street between Michigan Avenue and Wabash Avenue will be closed from 10 AM to 11 PM on Friday, November 17th. Garland Court will also be closed to the public between Washington Street and Randolph Street. 

Nov. 17, Tree Lighting Ceremony Schedule:

  • 5-6pm      Pre-Show
  • 6-6:30pm Tree Lighting Ceremony & Fireworks
  • 6:25pm     Christmas Tree is illuminated
  • 6:30-7pm Post Show

For more information on DCASE holiday festivities, please visit

Wintrust Magnificent Mile Lights Festival - Michigan Ave; November 18th

Wintrust Magnificent Mile Lights Festival will occur on Saturday, November 18. The parade will step-off this year at 5:30pm from Oak and Michigan and proceed south to Wacker Drive. The parade concludes with a fireworks show over the Chicago River at Michigan Avenue. For public safety, spectators are not allowed to view fireworks on any of the Chicago bridges.

Traffic Impacts (on Saturday, November 18th):

  • Closed 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. 
  • Clark Street (Oak Street to Delaware Street, east curb lane only)
  • Delaware Street (Dearborn Street to Clark Street, north curb lane only)
  • Oak Street (Clark Street to State Street)
  • Dearborn Street (Delaware Street to Maple Street)
  • Walton Street (State Street to Clark Street)
  • Closed 3 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
  • Oak Street (State Street to Michigan Avenue)
  • North Michigan Avenue (Oak Street to Wacker Drive)
  • Upper Wacker Drive (Michigan Avenue to east turnaround)
  • Closed 3:30 p.m. – 9 p.m. 
  • Upper Columbus (Curb lanes from Wacker Drive to Randolph Street)
  • Randolph Street (Curb lanes from Michigan to Columbus)
  • Closed 5:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. 
  • Upper Columbus (Wacker Drive to Randolph)

Click here for the 2023 Lights Festival Guide & Map.

Chriskindl Market - Daley Plaza, 50 W Washington St; November 17 – December 24:

The Christkindlmarket celebrates its 27th season at Daley Plaza, beginning on Friday November 17th. The Christkindlmarket Chicago is the most authentic traditional holiday market of its kind outside of Europe, offering a unique shopping experience, family-friendly events & intercultural activities.

  • Regular Hours: 
  • Sunday – Thursday: 11am – 8pm 
  • Friday – Saturday: 11am – 9pm 
  • Special Hours: 
  • Thanksgiving (Nov. 23): 11am – 4pm
  • Christmas Eve (Dec. 24): 11am – 4pm

For more information, visit

Election Judges Needed

Alderman Reilly is looking for qualified applicants to serve as Election Judges in the 42nd Ward for the upcoming March 19, 2024 Presidential Primary Election, and the subsequent November 5, 2024 Presidential Election.

Election Judges are assigned to local polling places in the 42nd Ward and are responsible for ensuring polling places open and close on time, and that voting operations run smoothly.

Election judges earn $230 for their services, provided they complete a brief training session prior to Election Day.

To apply online to become a Judge of Election, in the 42nd Ward, with the Chicago Board of Elections Commissioners, visit A paper main-in application is also available for download here.

Should you have additional questions, please contact Robert at [email protected] or 312-744-3062.

CAPS Meetings

18th District: (312-742-5778 / [email protected])

  • Beat 1831 CAPS Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, November 21st, at 5PM.
  • Beat 1832 CAPS Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, November 21st, at 6PM.
  • Beat 1833 CAPS Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, November 22nd, at 5PM.
  • Beat 1834 CAPS Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, November 22nd, at 6PM.

1st District: (312-745-4381 / [email protected])

  • There are no CAPS meetings scheduled for this district for the remainder of the month.

42nd Ward Traffic Closures & Construction Projects


Christy Schmid Productions

On Saturday, November 18 to Monday, November 20, Christy Schmid Productions, LLC will be filming scenes for an upcoming television series inside 325 North Wells Street. During the filming, parking at the following locations will be prohibited:

  • Both Sides of Wells from Kinzie to Hubbard
  • Both Sides of Lower Carroll from Wells to 150 W Carroll
  • NORTH Side of Kinzie from Wells to LaSalle St

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Ben Miner (location manager) at 574-707-5255.

Helicopter Lift: 225 N Wabash

On Saturday, December 2, there will be a helicopter lift at 225 N Wabash Avenue. During the lift, pedestrian and vehicular access will be prohibited at the following locations:

  • North Wabash, from Wacker Drive to Lake Street.
  • Wacker Place, form Garland to State

CDOT Construction: Pin & Link Plate Assembly and Expansion Joints

The Department of Transportation will begin a project to replace pin and link plate assemblies and expansion joints associated with the bridge structures of upper and intermediate Columbus Dr., Randolph St., and Stetson Ave. Pin and link plate assembly work will be performed from the underside of the bridge decks while expansion joint replacements will occur from above.  The work is anticipated to begin on Monday, November 13th, 2023 and progress to completion (anticipated Fall 2024).  

Work is to start along upper, intermediate, and lower levels of the following roadways: 

  • N. Columbus Drive between E. Wacker Drive and E. Randolph Street
  • E. Randolph Street between N. Michigan Avenue and N. Field Boulevard
  • N. Stetson Avenue between E. Wacker Drive and E. Lake Street

During construction, portions of these bridge structures will be barricaded off to prohibit vehicles and pedestrians directly over the active work. 

  • Vehicles will be shifted and/or detoured to allow the work to progress. 
  • The sidewalk on at least one side of the roadway and crosswalks at roadway intersections will remain open for pedestrians. 
  • Coordination of temporary access restriction may be required with private properties directly adjacent to the project.  

Helicopter Lift: 57 E Delaware

Midwest Helicopter was hired by 57 E Delaware to lift HVAC units onto their roof. The lift will occur on Sunday, November 19, from 9am to 11am. During the lift, the following will be closed to vehicular and pedestrian access:

  • Delaware, from State to Ernst Ct. 
  • Wabash, from Chestnut to Delaware 
  • Rush, from Chestnut to Walton

Street Resurfacing

The following resurfacing projects will begin at the beginning of November 2023:

  • New Street, between East North Water and East Illinois
  • New Street, between East North Water and River Drive
  • River Drive, between North New Street and North McClurg Court
  • McClurg Court, between River Drive and East North Water
  • Huron, between Hudson and Sedgwick
  • Erie, between Hudson and Sedgwick

Crews will grind away the top layer of asphalt first and return within two weeks to install new asphalt. The entire process can take 3 weeks to complete (weather dependent).

Canal Street Viaduct Project:

The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) is performing viaduct repairs on Canal Street, between Jackson and Adams.

Vehicle access is prohibited to this stretch of Canal Street throughout the project. Since the viaduct is over Metra/Amtrack train tracks, this project is required to be conducted during the overnight hours.

The project is expected to be completed by early 2025.

PGL River North Project

Peoples Gas began a gas main project in River North. PGL will be working at the following locations:

  • Franklin, from Huron to Chicago
  • Superior, from Wells to Orleans
  • Chicago, from Orleans to LaSalle

The project will be completed at the end of 2023.

Murphy Auditorium Renovation

Driehaus Museum purchased the Murphy Auditorium (50 E Erie) in June 2023, and began the following interior renovations:

  • Offices are going to be renovated
  • Stage has sunken – leveled out; fix accessibility issue
  • New elevator to go all the way to the top floor

Throughout the project, the following will be in-place:

  • Pedestrian canopy over the sidewalk in front of 50 E Erie
  • 100' of curb lane will be closed in front of 50 E Erie for material deliveries and small crane

They will need to use a small crane periodically throughout the project to lift materials onto the roof that can't fit through the doorway. 

** Crane lift planned on Tuesday, Oct 31 and Wednesday, Nov 1 (backup Thu Nov 2) from 9am to 4pm. While the lift is occurring, vehicular access to East Erie, between North Wabash and North Rush. The cane will remain up overnight. That said, the outriggers will be pulled in to allow for one lane of eastbound traffic.

Water Main project: Superior, from Orleans to Kingsbury

In Mid-October 2023, the Chicago Department of Water Management (DWM) began a water main project on West Superior Street, between North Orleans Street and North Kingsbury Street. This project will be completed in three phases. 

Phase 1 will include prep work, utility locating, tree trimming, and infrastructure trenching. The trenching will begin at West Superior and North Kingsbury and move eastward.

DWM is coordinating all water shut offs with each affected building property managers. Work hours will be 7:30am to 7:00pm, Monday through Friday. All work is expected to be completed by the end of February 2024 (weather dependent).  If you have any questions related to this project, please contact Bobby Lyons (project manager) at 773-724-1594 or John Bania (site foreman) at 773-663-8648.

LSD Bridge & Viaduct Project - September 25 to Summer 2024

The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) began working on the Lake Shore Drive Bridge and Viaduct Network between Monroe and Ontario. This work will include removing and replacing link plates, stainless steel pins, and Teflon bushings and expansion joint rehabilitation.  

Upper Level Lake Shore Drive will have one permanent lane closure in each direction and an additional lane closure during off-peak hours.

Intermediate Level Lake Shore Drive will have two permanent lane closures in each direction.

This project is expected to be completed summer of 2024.

Temporary Bus Stop Elimination

Until March 2024, the westbound bus stop at Grand and St. Clair will be temporarily removed.

  • Stop ID Number: 761
  • Route Stopping: #29 – State, #65 – Grand, #120 – Ogilvie/Streeterville Express, #121 – Union/Streeterville Express

State & Lake Utility Relocations

Utility companies began relocating utilities in advance of the State and Lake CTA project. Train services will not be disrupted during utility relocations. 


At least 1 lane of traffic will remain open (1 lane each direction on State St) at all times, but other driving and parking lanes may be closed. 

Construction equipment and materials will be stored on the street, including during time periods between active work. Work will primarily occur 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM on weekdays and 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM on Saturdays, but there will be limited work during nights. Utility companies are aware of and required to abide by the Chicago noise ordinance, which limits noisy work during overnight hours.

150 E Ontario Construction

W.E. O'Neil began construction of a 23-story building at 150 East Ontario Street. Work hours will be Monday-Friday, from 9am-5pm (8pm during caisson pours). Some weekend work will occur.  

Throughout the project, the following will be closed:

  • 150' of sidewalk in front of 150 East Ontario
  • 150' of curb lane in front of 150 East Ontario 

Pedestrians will be directed to the sidewalk on the south side of the street at Ontario/Michigan and Ontario/St. Clair. The entire project is expected to take 23 months to complete. 

Street Sweeping

During street sweeping season (April 1 to mid-November) the Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation uses mechanical street sweepers to remove debris and litter from streets, weather permitting. Throughout the season, DSS deploys mechanical street sweepers at regularly scheduled times to clear debris from Chicago streets. Starting this week, dozens of street sweepers have begun clearing the debris and leaves that have accumulated during winter months on both residential and arterial streets. 

On weekdays, from 9am to 2pm, this Sweeper Tracker map will show real-time locations of city street sweepers. For more information, please review the 42nd Ward Map and street sweeping schedule. Residents can also call 311 to find the dates and locations of street sweeping in their area.

Please check for the bright orange signs announcing temporary parking restrictions. These signs are posted two days prior to scheduled street sweeping events. Some streets also have permanently posted signs that specify a once-per-week period when parking is prohibited for street sweeping.

Kennedy Expressway Bridge Rehabilitation

In 2023, IDOT began rehabilitating the Kennedy Expressway (Interstate 90/94), from the Edens Expressway (I-94) junction to Ohio Street.

The estimated $150 million project consists of rehabilitating 36 bridges and the Reversible Lane Access Control system, replacing overhead sign structures, installing new signage and modernized LED lights, pavement patching, and structural painting. Additionally, Hubbard’s Cave, from Grand Avenue to Wayman Street, will be painted and new LED lighting installed.

The work will take place over three consecutive construction seasons, broken down into the following stages:

  • 2023 – Inbound Kennedy: Click here for stage 1 fact sheet.
  • 2024 – Reversible Express Lanes: Click here for stage 2 fact sheet.
  • 2025 – Outbound Kennedy: Click here for stage 3 fact sheet.

The Kennedy Expressway officially opened in November 1960, with the last major rehabilitation completed in 1994. The project will improve safety, traffic flow and reliability for the more than 275,000 motorists who use the expressway each day.

Click here for a project overview.

Click here for a FAQ

Click here to see photos and videos of the project.