Chicago marathon route: Street closures in effect as city welcomes economic boost from race

Chicago Marathon 2022 map embedded in the story below

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Friday, October 7, 2022
Chicago marathon street closures in effect as city preps for big race
Chicago Marathon street closures are already in place. The 2022 marathon route snakes across the city but starts and ends in Grant Park.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Thousands of runners are getting ready for Sunday's Chicago Marathon and street closures for the big race are now in effect around Grant Park.

Jackson from Columbus to DuSable Lake Shore Drive closed Thursday morning, and Balbo from Columbus to DuSable Lake Shore Drive closed earlier this week. And even more street closures are coming.

READ MORE | Bank of America Chicago Marathon 2022: Full list of street closures in Grant Park area

It is one of the premiere athletic events in the world. But for the city, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is also a premiere economic event.

Tens of thousands of runners and their families are expected to come to Chicago for the weekend, and they spend plenty of money on hotels and restaurants.

"This equates to 2,592 jobs and $127 million worth of wages, salary and income," said Glenn Eden, with Choose Chicago.

READ MORE | Bank of America Marathon in Chicago adds nonbinary division for 1st time ever

The marathon attracts runners from all 50 states and 100 countries. Jason Robinson came from Detroit for his first marathon.

"Eighteen weeks of pain," Robinson said. "We're at the finish line now. (Now is the fun part.) Yessir."

The health and fitness expo at McCormick Place alone brings in about $32 million in sales.

"They want a t-shirt, sunglasses, something that says 'I did Chicago 2022,'" said Dave Zimmer, of Fleet Feet Sports. "It's a huge economic boon for the city."

Chicago Marathon 2022 Route

This is the 44th running of the marathon in Chicago. Starting in Grant Park, it heads north to Wrigleyville, south to Loop, west to Damen, then south to Bridgeport before returning to Grant Park for the finish.

Last year, with the nation still recovering from the pandemic, there was a scaled down version of the race. But this year it is back to full capacity with 40,000 runners.

"This is my marathon of choice because it's put on by runners for runners," former marathon world record holder Joan Benoit Samuelson said. "They totally get our game."

"It's thousands of people who have come to Chicago and they're gonna discover themselves and discover an amazing community," Bank of America marathon director Carey Pinkowski said.