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Best Route: Cincinnati to Oak Brook, IL (Chicago west suburb)

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Skye:
I'll be traveling from Cincinnati to the Chicago western suburb of Oak Brook (near junction of I-88 and I-294) for a wedding this summer, and am debating on what is the best route to take. Is it better to take I-74 from Indianapolis to Champagne, then I-57 to I-294 or I-65 from Indy to Gary then I-80 to I-294.

Every time I've been to Chicago it was always to the city center and I've always noticed a lot of traffic on I-80/I-94 between Gary and the state line which makes me wonder if I-57 is a better approach.

hbelkins:

--- Quote from: Skye on April 21, 2021, 07:35:13 PM ---I'll be traveling from Cincinnati to the Chicago western suburb of Oak Brook (near junction of I-88 and I-294) for a wedding this summer, and am debating on what is the best route to take. Is it better to take I-74 from Indianapolis to Champagne, then I-57 to I-294 or I-65 from Indy to Gary then I-80 to I-294.

Every time I've been to Chicago it was always to the city center and I've always noticed a lot of traffic on I-80/I-94 between Gary and the state line which makes me wonder if I-57 is a better approach.

--- End quote ---

My recollection of I-65 is that it's rough as a cob and full of trucks. There will be a lot less traffic on I-74.

Flint1979:
I'd take I-65 between Indy and Gary then take I-80/94 to the Tri State and then go that way. The Tri State is I-294 it's a toll road but it's worth it to take it.

CtrlAltDel:
According to the Google, heading through Champaign will add 67 miles and an hour and four minutes to the trip. But, you get to avoid the heavy truck traffic on I-65 and the heavy traffic overall on I-80/I-94.

When I drive from Tennessee to the western suburbs of Chicago, which I did twice a year in the before times, I took the shorter route, but I was usually traveling in this area fairly late at night, so I didn't really have to deal with any of the downsides.

And the shorter route is what I would recommend, unless you really don't like trucks or unless you are coming at the height of rush hour or unless you really like driving.

That said, I have gone the I-57 route once in the reverse direction, to add in some variety, but I didn't take I-74, but rather two lane roads between Kankakee and I-65. It was very corn-fieldy, which I like, but many others don't. That added about 20 miles and half an hour to the trip.

cabiness42:
If you want the fastest route, 74->465->865->65->80/94->294 is going to be the fastest, even in bad traffic.

However, I absolutely loathe driving I-65 because of all the trucks. If you want a much, much less stressful alternative that will add only add about 30 minutes (less if traffic is bad on 80/94), then go 74->US 41->109th Ave->Calumet Ave->101st Ave/Exchange St->IL 394->294

Also, I used to commute to Oak Brook daily and still do so occasionally. If you are unfamiliar with the area and have any questions, feel free to PM me.

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