suntimes
SCATTERED 
Weather Updates

City determined to avoid repeat of weather confusion at Lollapalooza

Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration is determined to avoid a repeat of last year’s storm-related confusion at the annual Lollapalooza music festival in Grant Park.
When a severe thunderstorm forced the temporary evacuation of Grant Park on Aug. 4, 2012, scores of drenched concert patrons didn’t know where to go to seek shelter. They huddled in storefronts and in a nearby Metra station.
On Thursday, the city’s Office of Emergency Management and Communications issued a press release alerting music lovers planning to attend the Aug. 2-to-4 extravaganza where to go in the event of an emergency.
Ticket holders were advised to pay attention to the blue and white signs installed to direct them to designated weather shelters in the event of heavy rain, high winds, lightening, hail or tornadoes.
The signs will direct an estimated 100,000 daily patrons to one of three shelters: the Grant Park North Garage, Grant Park South Garage and the East Monroe Street Garage. All three will be accessed through vehicle entrances on Michigan Ave.
“We continue to stress to the public the importance of remaining aware of your surroundings at large-scale events,” OEMC Executive Director Gary Schenkel was quoted as saying.
“OEMC monitors conditions and, as evidenced by last year’s temporary evacuation during storms, is prepared to take appropriate measures to ensure public safety at these group gatherings.”
In the event of extreme heat, Lollapalooza fans were advised to duck into complimentary cooling buses and to take advantage of water stations and misting fans installed by the Chicago Park District.
The current forecast for next weekend calls for temperatures in the upper 80’s and 90’s during the wildly-popular music festival.
Fans will be permitted to bring up to two “factory-sealed, one liter water bottles” into the music festival to avoid becoming dehydrated.
Street closures for Lollapalooza started Monday and will continue through Aug. 7. They include: both Balbo and Jackson from Columbus to Lake Shore Drive; Columbus from Monroe to Roosevelt; and Balbo, Congress and Jackson from Michigan Ave. to Columbus.


© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.