Chicago Photography Guide Part 3 - CDOT Trains and Parking Garages
Written and Photographed by Mike Lindle
Heading out to Chicago but don’t know where to shoot? Are you feeling a little more adventurous? This guide maps out some hidden gems in the city from a few uncommon vantage points. These views are courtesy of Chicago Department of Transportation and the local Self-Parking Garages. This is Part 3 of a 4 part series on the best photography locations in Chicago:
Part 3 - CDOT Trains & Parking Lots
I’ve also included a few tips, the gear I used, and how to get to each location through Google Maps
L Train S-Curve at Wells Kinzie Garage
Chicago’s S-Curve is a popular location among Chicago night / long exposure photographers. It has become a hotspot for touring photographers throughout the world when they visit Chicago. It’s a unique view to catch a long exposure of the L Train passing through the S shaped curve in the tracks.
Double Q-Loop Parking Deck
Hidden in the heart of the Chicago Loop, this parking garage provides a unique look-down on their parking spiral, dubbed the “Double-Q”. Head straight into this parking deck and head up to the top floor to catch the view.
Adams & Wabash Train Station Pedestrian Bridge
Adams & Wabash is an L station serving the CTA's Brown, Green, Orange, Pink, and Purple Lines. There are pedestrian bridges to cross the tracks at both ends of the platform. The north facing pedestrian bridge overlooks the tracks and Trump International Hotel. Make sure to time your shots with the passing trains! They run frequently during rush hour.
View of Metra Railway Transfer from Lake Wells Self-Park
Another unassuming parking garage in The Chicago Loop. The views from this parking deck overlook the 4-way Metra Railway Transfer and is truly a unique subject to photograph.
Skyline Reflection at 200 N Clark St Parking Garage
Practically hidden to the naked eye, this parking garage sits at the bottom 11-or-so floors of a taller office building with glass siding. Head inside head up to the parking garage, you’ll need to stand on the siding and poke your head over the ledge to enjoy the view! Make sure you time your shots to photograph the passing trains, or bring a subject to shoot with! (or both)
Jackson Station Pedestrian Tunnel from Red to Blue Line
Surreal looking nearly Tron-themed pedestrian tunnel allows pedestrians to connect between the Red and the Blue Lines at Jackson Station. Bring a friend and frame up some cool portraits if that’s your thing!