How to Find Parking in River North

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In This Guide

In this guide, you’ll find everything you need to know to find parking in River North:

About River North

Once an industrial neighborhood, River North is now one of the most happening areas of Chicago. In the 1970s, artists were drawn to the neighborhood for its spacious lofts and cheap rent. Today, the neighborhood is home to luxury apartments, high-end shopping and dining, and the city’s tech scene. It also boasts the densest area of antique stores in Chicago.

All in all, River North is an appealing neighborhood to spend the day exploring. Most attractions are within walking distance from each other, and there’s always a new hot spot to check out. River North is a popular destination for local Chicagoans and tourists alike.

Things to Know About Parking in River North

River North offers a mix of street parking, lots, and garages. This allows for a variety of parking prices. The key is to figure out which parking option best fits your needs and budget.

If you need to park for the entire day, you’ll save money by parking in a garage or lot at a daily rate, rather than parking on the street at an hourly rate.

Most street parking in River North has a time limit. Feeding the meter for more time won’t count if you exceed the maximum amount of time allowed. You have to move your car after the maximum parking time, even if that means moving it one spot down. Otherwise, you’ll risk getting a parking ticket.

Another important factor to keep in mind is the weather. In the winter, look out for signs indicating whether it’s legal to park on the street. This will depend on how much snow is on the ground. If a couple inches of snow have fallen, your best bet is to opt for a parking garage – both for the safety of your car and for the possibility that the street needs to be cleared.

Find more here on general Chicago parking information, like the details of the Chicago vehicle sticker, how to retrieve a towed car, and more.

Top Parking Tips

  • Do your research beforehand. Choose whether to park in a lot, garage, or on the street based on the amount of time you’ll spend in River North. If you need to spend all day in the neighborhood, opt for garage or lot to avoid parking time limits.
  • Always, always look out for signage about parking restrictions when parking on the street. Restrictions typically have to do with weather, time limits, and street cleaning.

Best Places to Park in River North

The Mart Parc Wells Garage at 401 N. Wells Street stands out. It’s in a great location for River North, right next to the Merchandise Mart. Plus, Electric Vehicle (EV) charging is available.

Another attractive option is the lot at 64 E. Hubbard Street. If you’re trying to park a large vehicle like a truck or SUV, a parking lot often offers more space than a garage. This lot is affordable and within walking distance of the Magnificent Mile, one of Chicago’s most popular destinations.

For street parking, check out Chicago Avenue between Orleans Street and LaSalle Street.

Lots and Garages

View the map below or directly on Google for a list of off-street parking lots and garages in River North.

 

310 W Huron Lot

300 N State St Garage

  • 300 N. State St.
  • Reserve parking here
  • Tip: This is a convenient, affordable location if you’re going to House of Blues.

320 W Erie Lot

Hampton Social Valet

Chicago Tribune Lot

641 N LaSalle St

655 N LaSalle St

737 N LaSalle St Valet

365 W Chicago Ave Valet

Mart Parc Wells Garage

  • 401 N. Wells St.
  • Reserve parking here
  • Tip: This garage has a height restriction of 7 feet, which is taller than most garages. If you drive a truck or a tall SUV, this could be a great option for you.

Mart Parc Orleans Garage

Wolf Point Self Park Garage

Sterling Garage

North Bridge Garage

Kinzie-Canal Mart Center Lot

Flair Tower Garage

The Westin Valet Garage

681 N LaSalle Garage

201 E Illinois Garage

  • 201 E Illinois St
  • Tip: If you’re going to Navy Pier, this is a convenient parking garage.

357 W Huron Valet Lot

430 W Ohio Lot

305 W Ontario Lot

301 W Huron Valet

Rainforest Cafe Valet

Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse Valet

318 N State St

33 W Kinzie Valet

316 N Clark Valet

  • 316 N. Clark St.
  • Reserve parking here
  • Tip: This valet location is right next to one of the most popular antique stores in River North, The Golden Triangle.

315 N LaSalle Valet

Imperial Lamian Valet

La Madia Valet

Nonnina Valet

220 W. Illinois Valet

Hilton Garden Inn Valet

  • 10 E. Grand Ave.
  • Reserve parking here
  • Tip: This parking location offers in and out privileges, which is helpful if you need longer term parking.

Greenway Self Park Garage

AMA Plaza Garage

Self Park Ohio Ontario

Street Parking

Street Parking Overview

Street parking in River North depends on a variety of factors: how long you need parking, where you’re going, how far you’re willing to walk, and the weather. Your best bet? Do a little research beforehand to decide if street parking is right for you.

For example, there’s ample street parking if you’re only parking for a couple hours and your destination is northwest River North. But if you’re going to a crowded area, like the Merchandise Mart, you are less likely to find street parking.

And don’t forget about Chicago winters, which makes street parking impossible at times.

 

Best Bets for Street Parking

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W Huron St and W Erie St

  • Find ample meter parking on both sides of Huron between Orleans and Wells, as well as on Erie between Kingsbury and Orleans.
  • This parking stretch is close to some of Chicago’s most popular restaurants and bars.

N Dearborn St

  • Free street parking is available on the east side of Dearborn between Hubbard and Kinzie.
  • This area is in the heart of River North, only a couple blocks west of the Mag Mile and walking distance to the Merchandise Mart.
  • There’s no parking allowed between 11 p.m.-5 a.m.

W Ohio St

  • There’s free street parking on the south side of Ohio between Clark and Dearborn.
  • There’s no parking allowed between 7 a.m.-9 a.m. and 4 p.m.-6 p.m.

 

River North Parking Meter Locations and Rate Areas

Chicago Meters Map Demo

All metered parking in River North costs $4 per hour. Click here for an interactive version of the map above.

Find more information about metered parking in River North, like disability parking and pay station hours, here.

 

Paying for Metered Parking in River North

You can pay for metered parking in River North at the pay stations located in the parking zone where you are parking. You should see a sign pointing to the direction of the pay station. Quarters, credit/debit/pre-paid cards are all accepted.

Another option is to download the city’s street parking app, ParkChicago, which allows you to pay from your smartphone. But its best feature is the ability to extend the time on your meter without having to go back to your car, especially in the winter!

 

River North Residential Parking Zone

River North Residential

Residential parking is available in central and northwest River North. Click here to see Chicago’s residential parking map.

To park in a residential zone, you need either a Chicago City Vehicle Sticker with Residential Zone Parking or a Daily Residential Parking Permit for guests. Some zones require a residential permit at all times, while others only require permit at certain times of day or night. Find more information about city vehicle stickers here.

 

Snow Regulations

Snow plows clear snow almost daily to maintain River North’s streets in the winter. That being said, street parking is prohibited when there’s over 2 inches of snow. Don’t carry a ruler with you? Your best bet is to avoid street parking altogether when it’s snowing or when snow is on the ground. Park in a parking garage or lot instead.

The city also puts overnight parking bans in place during the winter so that the streets can be plowed at night. Check the City of Chicago website in the winter for more information about when exactly those bans are in place.

Parking Near Top Attractions

Merchandise Mart: Built in the 1930s, the Merchandise Mart is the largest commercial building in the world. Popular tech companies, major wholesalers, restaurants, and shopping can all be found under this one roof. It’s estimated that 25,000 people visit the Mart every business day.

Visiting the Merchandise Mart can be a little overwhelming if you don’t have a game plan. We suggest checking out one of the scheduled shows or events to get the most out of your experience.

Affordable garage or lot parking within walking distance of the Merchandise Mart include:

Wolf Point Garage

300 N LaSalle Valet Stand

 

Eataly: Eataly is your one-stop shop for all things Italian. The massive two-floor retailer is home to several restaurants and cafes, a market with fresh and unique ingredients, and tasting counters (picture delicious wines and hundreds of cheeses). In other words, show up hungry.

Located just west of the Mag Mile, Eataly offers a special dining option in a sea of restaurant chains.

For parking, Eataly has a valet service located at 43 E. Ohio St. and 44 E. Grand Ave. The closest self-park garage is at 10 E Grand Ave. With a purchase of at least $20 at Eataly, the first hour of parking in the garage is free. Reserve parking in this garage here. *Note: If you reserve parking, the Eataly discount for one free hour no longer applies.

 

House of Blues: The House of Blues, located along the Chicago River on Dearborn Street, hosts some of the top performers making their way through Chicago. Built in 1967, the building itself is something to behold, inspired by the “Estavovski” Opera House in Prague.

Click here to check out upcoming performances.

Affordable garage or lot parking within walking distance of the House of Blues include:

300 N State Street Valet

350 N State Street Valet

Resources

  • CTA – Chicago’s public transportation site with parking information near city trains and buses.
  • River North Neighborhood Guide: Where to Eat, Drink, Park, and More – Learn about even more River North attractions with convenient parking.
  • Parknav – Helps parkers find the best street parking with real-time predictive data.
  • ParkMe – Helps parkers find off- and on-street parking using full-time researchers and a predictive algorithm.
  • Cityofchicago.org – City website with parking information, such as laws, restrictions, permits, and more. 
  • SpotHero – Find and reserve parking in advance with this free on-demand parking app.
  • Parkopedia – Browse street and off-street parking rates with an interactive map.