September 26, 2020

Traffic jams possible during public safety drill enacted for 3 hours in city’s central business district tonight

City officials warned of traffic disruptions on Thursday night, due to a public safety drill taking place in Chicago’s downtown business district and Near South Side.

The drill, which had been planned “for weeks,’’ will be from 6 to 9 p.m., according to a statement from Ald. Brian Hopkins, of the 2nd Ward.

It’s not clear exactly what the drill entails or what the public should watch out for, but the statement said the focus of this exercise is to “ensure the safety and well-being of residents, workers, businesses and peaceful gatherings.”

“Critical infrastructure assets” will be staged at “various access points” and the drill will cause traffic headaches within these boundaries:

1/4 u00b7 Division Street on the North

1/4 u00b7 18th Street on the South

1/4 u00b7 Clark Street on the West

1/4 u00b7 Lake Shore Drive on the East

Access to these areas is not restricted but residents may experience “traffic disruptions,’’ according to the statement.

The drill, implemented by city personnel to ensure the safety of large public gatherings and heavily trafficked pedestrian areas, is part of ongoing efforts to engineer security measures in order to mitigate risk to the central business district, according to the city.

Agencies participating in the drill include the Office of Emergency Management and Communication, police, fire, Department of Transportation, Streets and Sanitation and Water Management, among others.

rsobol@chicagotribune.com

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