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  • Charlene Stark

Streamline Your Project: The Benefits of Hiring a Permit Expediter for CDOT Street Closure Permits




Obtaining a street closure permit is a crucial step for any construction project in Chicago. Whether you're building a new office tower, renovating a residential building, or working on a public infrastructure project, closing a street or sidewalk can have significant impacts on local businesses, residents, and traffic patterns. That's why it's important to understand the process for securing a street closure permit and to be prepared for the potential challenges you may face.


To help you navigate the process, we've compiled a list of five things you need to know before applying for a street closure permit in Chicago:

  1. The types of construction projects that require a street closure permit: Any project that involves closing a street or sidewalk, or that will significantly impact traffic flow, will likely require a street closure permit. This includes projects like building a new structure, digging a trench, or installing utility lines.

  2. The specific streets and areas that are eligible for street closure: Not all streets in Chicago can be closed for construction. You'll need to check with the City of Chicago to determine which streets are eligible for closure and whether your project meets the criteria.

  3. The required documentation and application process: The City of Chicago has specific requirements for the documentation and information you'll need to provide when applying for a street closure permit. This may include a project proposal, traffic management plan, and liability insurance information.

  4. The timeline for obtaining a permit: The process for obtaining a street closure permit can vary depending on the complexity of your project and the workload of the City of Chicago. It's important to plan ahead and allow plenty of time for the permit process. A permit expediter can be helpful in streamlining the process and ensuring that your application is completed properly and in a timely manner.

  5. The potential costs and fees associated with the permit: There may be fees associated with obtaining a street closure permit in Chicago, including fees for traffic control and other necessary services. It's important to budget for these costs in advance and to be prepared for any additional expenses that may arise.


Now that you have a basic understanding of the process, let's dive into a step-by-step guide to obtaining a street closure permit for your construction project in Chicago:


Step 1: Determine if your project requires a street closure permit The first step in the process is to determine whether your construction project requires a street closure permit. As mentioned above, any project that involves closing a street or sidewalk or that will significantly impact traffic flow will likely require a permit. If you're unsure whether your project falls into this category, it's best to err on the side of caution and assume that you'll need a permit.

Step 2: Gather the necessary documentation Once you've determined that your project requires a street closure permit, the next step is to gather the necessary documentation. This may include a project proposal, traffic management plan, liability insurance information, and any other documents required by the City of Chicago. It's important to be thorough and organized in your application to avoid delays or issues later on in the process.

Step 3: Submit the application to the City of Chicago With your documentation in hand, it's time to submit your application to the City of Chicago. You can do this online or in person, depending on your preference. It's important to follow all instructions and deadlines carefully to ensure that your application is processed smoothly.

Step 4: Wait for approval (and be prepared for possible delays or objections) Once you've submitted your application, the City of Chicago will review it and determine whether to grant your request for a street closure permit. This process can take anywhere from a few days to several weeks, depending on the complexity of your project and the workload of the City. It's important to be patient and to follow up as needed to ensure that your application is being processed.

It's also important to be prepared for the possibility of delays or objections. If the City has concerns about your project or the impact it will have on the community, they may request additional information or modifications to your proposal. It's important to be responsive and to address any concerns in a timely manner.

Step 5: Coordinate with local businesses and residents Once you've received approval for your street closure permit, it's important to coordinate with local businesses and residents to minimize disruption and ensure that everyone is aware of the closure. This may involve providing advance notice, offering alternative routes or parking options, or offering compensation for any inconvenience caused by the closure.

Step 6: Secure any necessary additional permits or approvals In addition to a street closure permit, you may need to secure other permits or approvals for your construction project. This may include building permits, zoning approvals, or permits from other agencies. It's important to research and understand all of the necessary permits and approvals, and to allow sufficient time to obtain them.

Step 7: Hire a traffic control company and develop a traffic management plan To ensure the safety of workers and the public during your construction project, it's important to hire a traffic control company and develop a comprehensive traffic management plan. The traffic control company will be responsible for setting up and maintaining detour signs, barricades, and other traffic control measures, while the traffic management plan will outline the specific steps and procedures that will be followed to ensure the safety of all involved.

Step 8: Finalize the permit and begin construction Once you've secured all necessary permits and approvals, and developed a traffic management plan, you'll be ready to finalize your street closure permit and begin construction. It's important to follow all guidelines and procedures outlined in the permit to avoid any issues or delays during the construction process.

As you can see, obtaining a street closure permit for your construction project in Chicago is a multi-step process that requires careful planning and coordination. To make the process as smooth as possible, it's important to be organized, follow all instructions and deadlines, and be prepared for the possibility of delays or objections.


To help you navigate the process, we've compiled a list of frequently asked questions about street closure permits in Chicago:

  • How long does the permit process take? The timeline for obtaining a street closure permit can vary depending on the complexity of your project and the workload of the City of Chicago. In general, it's best to allow several weeks for the permit process, and to be prepared for the possibility of delays.

  • Can I expedite the process? If you need to secure your street closure permit on a tight timeline, you may be able to expedite the process by hiring a permit expediter. A permit expediter is a professional who specializes in navigating the permit process and can help you complete your application efficiently and effectively.

  • How do I coordinate with local businesses and residents during the closure? It's important to be considerate of the impact that your street closure will have on local businesses and residents. This may involve providing advance notice, offering alternative routes or parking options, or offering compensation for any inconvenience caused by the closure.

  • What happens if I start construction without a permit? If you start construction without a street closure permit, you may be subject to fines and penalties, and you may also be at risk of legal action from affected parties. It's important to follow all laws and regulations, and to secure all necessary permits before beginning any construction.

In addition to answering these frequently asked questions, it's also important to understand how to plan for and coordinate with local businesses and residents during a street closure in Chicago. Clear communication and advance notice are key to minimizing disruption and maintaining good relationships with the community. This may involve reaching out to affected parties through door-to-door notifications, public meetings, or other means, and offering alternative routes or compensation as appropriate.

There are many benefits to securing a street closure permit for your construction project in Chicago. In addition to avoiding legal consequences and fines, obtaining a permit ensures that you're following all laws and regulations, and that you're taking steps to ensure the safety of workers and the public. Obtaining a permit also helps to maintain good relationships with the community, which can be beneficial for your company's reputation and future projects.


To illustrate the importance of obtaining a street closure permit, let's look at a case study of how one construction company successfully navigated the process in Chicago:

XYZ Construction was hired to build a new office tower in the Loop. As part of the project, they needed to close a section of a major thoroughfare for several weeks to install utility lines. To ensure that they were in compliance with all laws and regulations, they applied for a street closure permit from the City of Chicago.

The process was not without its challenges. The City had concerns about the impact the closure would have on local businesses and traffic, and they requested additional information and modifications to the traffic management plan. XYZ Construction worked closely with the City and made the necessary changes to their proposal, and after several weeks of back and forth, they were finally granted the permit.

To minimize disruption and maintain good relationships with the community, XYZ Construction made sure to provide advance notice to affected businesses and residents, and they offered alternative routes and compensation as appropriate. They also hired a traffic control company and developed a comprehensive traffic management plan to ensure the safety of workers and the public during the closure.

Despite the challenges, XYZ Construction was able to successfully navigate the street closure permit process and complete the project on time. By following all laws and regulations, and by working closely with the City and the community, they were able to ensure the success of their project and maintain a positive reputation.


To help you avoid common mistakes and ensure the success of your construction project, here are some top tips for communicating with the City of Chicago during the street closure permit process:

  • Be organized and thorough in your application: By providing all necessary documentation and information upfront, you'll be more likely to secure a permit in a timely manner.

  • Follow up and stay on top of the process: If you don't hear back from the City in a timely manner, or if you have questions about the process, it's important to follow up and stay on top of the process.

  • Navigate bureaucracy and red tape: Obtaining a street closure permit can be a bureaucratic process, and it's important to be patient and persistent. If you encounter delays or obstacles, it can be helpful to work with a permit expediter to streamline the process.

Finally, it's important to learn from the lessons of others and avoid common mistakes when applying for a street closure permit in Chicago. Some common mistakes to avoid include:

  • Failing to plan ahead and leave enough time for the permit process: It's important to allow sufficient time for the permit process and to be prepared for the possibility of delays.

  • Skipping steps or submitting incomplete documentation: By being thorough and organized in your application, you'll be more likely to secure a permit in a timely manner.

  • Neglecting to coordinate with local businesses and residents: It's important to be considerate of the impact that your street closure will have on local businesses and residents, and to take steps to minimize disruption.

  • Not hiring a traffic control company or developing a traffic management plan: Ensuring the safety of workers and the public is crucial, and hiring a traffic control company and developing a traffic management plan are important steps in the process.

  • Failing to follow up and stay on top of the process: If you don't hear back from the City in a timely manner, or if you have questions about the process, it's important to follow up and stay on top of the process to avoid delays or issues.

In conclusion, obtaining a street closure permit is a crucial step for any construction project in Chicago. By understanding the process, coordinating with local businesses and residents, and being prepared for the possibility of delays or objections, you can ensure the success of your project and maintain good relationships with the community. A permit expediter can be helpful in streamlining the process and ensuring that your application is completed properly and in a timely manner. By following all laws and regulations, and by working closely with the City and the community, you can ensure the success of your project and maintain a positive reputation.

Don't let the street closure permit process slow down your construction project in Chicago. Let Permit Studio help you navigate the bureaucracy and get your permit approved quickly and efficiently. Our team of experienced permit expediters has a proven track record of success in securing street closure permits for construction projects of all sizes. Contact us today to learn more and get started on your project.

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