Chicago suburbs empty during governor's shelter-in-place order for COVID-19

CHICAGO SUBURBS (WLS) -- Illinois Governor JB Pritzker's shelter-in-place order went into effect on Saturday, March 21, at 5 p.m., and the Chicago suburbs have since appeared nearly deserted.

ABC7 visited 5 different suburbs north, west and south of the city to see what the downtown areas look like during the order.

In north suburban Evanston, most business downtown were shuttered with only a few exceptions. The bakery Patisserie Coralie, which is open for pick-up and curbside service, posted a sign outside that read, "Don't be a fool. Buy pastries, not T.P."

Northwestern University's flagship campus in central Evanston was empty as well, except for a few individuals and couples walking dogs. Only a handful of residents were enjoying the Lake Michigan lakefront walking paths.

The west suburbs of Wheaton, Elmhurst and Naperville were also mostly abandoned in their respective downtowns. Long-time family owned businesses were temporarily closed, and only a small number of people were going for walks outside.

Metra commuter rail services have reported that ridership is down around 90 percent.

Throughout Naperville, someone had posted handwritten yard signs that read "STAY HOME."

In south suburban Joliet, this photographer only saw one person outside during a full hour in the city. Parks were empty, and major businesses were closed.

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