Loading Zones

Loading zones are designated areas in the parking lane for the loading and unloading of deliveries to buildings. These zones are for commercial vehicles or vehicles which hold a valid Non-Commercial Loading Zone Permit only and are not designated to reserve parking for business patrons or employees. Any commercial vehicle may park in any loading zone for the purpose of loading and unloading for a set period of time.

Loading zones are intended for businesses and areas experiencing a high level of commercial activity. Traffic congestion, parking availability, business hours, requested hours of use and scope of deliveries will all be used to determine the length of the zone and the restriction times. Please provide this information in the relevant section of the application.

Additionally, given the premium on parking spaces throughout the 46th Ward, businesses may be asked to share loading zones. If businesses require space for both commercial deliveries and patrons, we may recommend a standing zone.

Standing Zones

Standing zones are designated areas in the parking lane for temporary parking. Vehicles parking in standing zones must have their hazard lights flashing while the driver is away from the vehicle. The process for determining a standing zone and approval is similar to that of a loading zone. Active hours of the zone will be limited to your hours of operation. Note that even though the standing zone is placed adjacent to your business, vehicles standing in the zone for the allotted time are not obligated to patronize your business. Nearby businesses may be asked to share their standing zones.

Valet Zones

Valet zones are special loading zone areas in the parking lane for the operation of a valet service. The process for determining a valet zone and approval is similar to that of a loading zone. Active hours will be limited to the hours of operation of your valet service.

If your business establishment wishes to conduct valet services independently on an incidental basis, you must obtain a valet parking service license from the Department of Consumer Services. Otherwise, you must contract a licensed valet operator. A list of valet operators licenses in the City of Chicago is available here. Valet operating procedures are outlined in Chapter 4-232 of the Municipal Code of Chicago.

Application Process

To apply for a standing, loading or valet zone, please submit a completed application, a letter on company letterhead formally requesting the signage and two photos of the proposed location. Further requirements are detailed in the application. New standing zones and new loading zones require aldermanic input and further review by the Department of Transportation. Initial installation fees and annual maintenance fees are based on the distance of the zone.

All loading zone application are reviewed with the considerations that the installation of loading zone signs reduces the amount of available parking in the vicinity. If your primary business activity does not depend on having a standing, loading or valet zone, your application may be denied. If there is a high concentration of zones in your area, the 46th Ward office may consolidate zones or ask businesses to share spaces.

As of January 2015, the Department of Transportation has greatly streamlined the process and cut out some of the previous steps to the previous application. With the new process, the applicant will have to:

  • Complete the below application
  • Contact our office for approval
  • Email or drop off the application and pick up approval or disapproval letter from our office
  • Applicant will take the invoice sheet and approval letter to any City of Chicago payment center
  • After the $55 price is paid at the center, the applicant send the receipt and approval letter to CDOT
  • The location is surveyed and CDOT either recommends or does not recommend the installation

If you have any questions regarding this process, please contact the Ward office via email at Info@James46.org or by calling (773) 878-4646.


Municipal Code Regarding Loading Zones

Non-Commercial Loading Zone Permit Information

Forms and Files

The new loading Zone application can be accessed below:

New Loading Zone Application (2016)


Licensed Valet Operators List