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CTA, Metra increase service for St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Updated: March 14, 2014 5:32PM



More than 1 million people are expected to attend the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations downtown Saturday, and both the CTA and Metra are increasing service to accomodate revelers.

The parade steps off at noon at Columbus and Balbo drives, and is held in conjunction with the dyeing of the Chicago River at 9:30 a.m., according to the city’s Office of Emergency Management and Communications.

Officials expect more than 1 million spectators will be in the area, the OEMC said in a statement.

Columbus Drive will be closed between Randolph Street and Roosevelt Road, as will other east-west streets on that area, OEMC said said. Drivers should use Lake Shore Drive or State Stret as alternatives.

Parade organziers highly recommend attendees take public transit to the parade and river dyeing.

Metra is adding seating capacity to all of its trains Saturday, and no alcohol will be allowed on any line, according to the rail agency.

On the CTA, the Blue, Brown, Green, Orange, Purple and Red Lines will have more frequent rail service with increased capacity between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m., according the CTA.

Changes are as follows:

• Red Line trains will operate every 5 to 8 minutes from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

• Longer Brown Line trains will operate in both directions between Kimball and the Loop from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

• Longer Blue Line trains will operate in both directions between O’Hare and Forest Park from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

• Longer Green Line trains will operate in both directions between Harlem/Lake and 63rd Street from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

• Longer Orange Line trains will operate in both directions between Midway and the Loop from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

• Longer Purple Line trains will operate in both directions between Linden and Howard between 8 a.m. and 12 p.m.



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