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Parking Your Commercial Truck In Chicago

The City of Chicago has a law restricting the parking of commercial trucks and junk vehicles on city streets. For several years, the City has prohibited trucks weighing over 4500 lbs, (18 wheelers) from parking on City streets. The City also prohibits all commercial trucks from parking on City streets, however, there are a few exceptions to the rule, as described below.

The benefits:

  •  To maintain safety in residential neighborhoods. 
  • To preserve the residential feel in our neighborhoods.
  • To improve parking in densely populated areas.

The laws were NOT enacted to impact businesses that provide services to Chicagoans.

What is a "Commercial Truck"?

A commercial truck is a vehicle that is represented as being used for the transportation of property for any commercial or industrial business, or vehicles carrying merchandise or supplies of a commercial or industrial nature, or junk vehicles (text taken from chapter 9-64-170).

What is a "Junk Vehicle"?

A junk vehicle is any truck or automobile or motorized vehicle that is used in the collection, disposition or transportation of junk from one place to another.

The following information applies to both commercial trucks and junk vehicles.

Can a commercial truck park on a business street?

  • Yes, but only while the commercial truck is providing deliveries or services to customers. For example: contractors, electricians, plumbers, or delivery persons may park the commercial trucks when they are providing services to customers.  Or if there is any other expeditious loading or unloading.
  • Commercial truck owners who park on business streets that are not providing services to customers may have their vehicles booted.
  • Can a commercial truck park on a residential street?

  • Yes, but only while the commercial truck (regardless of weight) is providing deliveries or services to customers. For example: contractors, electricians, plumbers, or delivery persons may park the commercial trucks when they are providing services to customers.  Or if there is any other expeditious loading or unloading.

Or

  • When a residential truck permit is displayed, and the truck is parked near the residence of the owner. This exception only applies within participating wards (Ward information is listed below).
  • What are the consequences for parking in an area that does not permit commercial truck parking?

  • Your vehicle can be booted immediately, and the penalty includes a $60 boot fee and a $125.00 parking violation. For trucks over 4500 lbs, however, the boot fee is $400 (the parking violation is the same $125.00). Booted vehicles may be towed and are subject to additional towing and storage fees.
  • When can my commercial truck be booted?

  • When your commercial truck is parked on a business street, and you are not providing services.

Or

  • When your commercial truck is parked on a residential street in a ward that does not permit trucks to park, and you are not providing services.

Or

  • When your commercial truck is parked on a residential street within a ward that does permit trucks to park, but your commercial truck is not displaying a valid residential truck permit, and you are not providing services.

Or

  • When your commercial truck is eligible for the boot.  Your commercial truck is eligible for the boot when: the commercial truck has 3 or more outstanding final determination parking/red-light tickets of any age; or the commercial truck has two outstanding final determination parking/red-light tickets older than one year. Parking/red-light ticket payment plans are available to eligible motorists and can prevent your vehicle from being booted.  Please call 312.744.PARK for more information.
  • What does the Residential Truck Permit allow?

  •  The Residential Truck Permit allows commercial trucks, weighing less than 4500 lbs., to be parked in residential areas near the residence of the registered owner of the vehicle. This only applies within certain wards that allow parking of commercial trucks.  Those wards are:

1,9,10,12,13,14,15,16,18,19,21,22,23,24,26,27,28,29,32,33,35,37,40,42,43,44,46,49 and 50. Ward participation is subject to change, so please check with the City Clerk's office for the most up to date ward information.

What are the requirements for obtaining a Residential Truck Permit?

  • The vehicle must weigh less than 4,500 lbs.

And

  • The vehicle does not have any outstanding City of Chicago parking violations.

And

  • You must present proof of a current city vehicle sticker.
  • Where can I obtain a Residential Truck Permit?

Applications are available from aldermanic offices in participating wards. There is no charge for the permit.  Please call 312.744.1528 for more information, or visit www.chicityclerk.com/

More About Trucks

Size and Weight Standards:

Trucks traveling in Chicago are required to be in conformity with size and weight regulations described in the Chicago Municipal Code Chapter 9-72-070, and the Illinois Vehicle Code Chapter 15-111. To find out more, please contact the City of Chicago, Department of Consumer Services at 312.744.4006. Vehicles traveling overweight are subject to fines; and the fines vary depending on the weight.

Oversized & Overweight Truck Permits:

Special permits may be required to operate in the City of Chicago for vehicles that are not in conformity with the standard size and weight regulations. For special permit information, please contact the Office of Emergency Management and Communications at 312.744.4652.

Viaduct Clearance

Viaduct clearance information is available on the City's website and intended to provide users with clearance information posted along the streets in Chicago. For viaduct information, please visit www.cityofchicago.org/transportation or contact the Chicago Department of Transportation at 312.744.3520.

Restrictions on Boulevards

Commercial vehicles (any vehicle that is designed for and being used for carrying freight or other goods and merchandise for commercial purposes) are prohibited from operating on any boulevard. However, in cases where it is impossible to access the building while delivering or receiving merchandise from an alley or side street, the commercial vehicle is permitted to enter the boulevard from the nearest cross street to access the building. For more information, please contact the department of transportation at 312.744.3600 (Municipal code section 9-72-020).

Business License requirements for Trucks:

Depending on the nature of your business, you may require a business license to operate in the City of Chicago. To find out more, please contact the Department of Business Affairs and Licensing at 312.74G.OBIZ.

Here are a few pointers:

  •  A Junk Peddler License is required to travel from place to place for the purpose of collecting, transportation or disposing of junk.
  • A Scavenger License is required to provide private garbage collection service. Annual inspections of trucks are required and conducted by the department of Streets and Sanitation.
  • A Mobil Food License is required to sell food items directly from a vehicle, such as a catering or ice cream truck. All food must be prepared and pre-packaged. Mobile food vehicles are prohibited in some wards of the City.