Chicago residents on weather: No Windy City jokes today

November 29, 2011

Chicagoans on Tuesday will have to decide whether to direct their ire at Mother Nature or those making Windy City jokes.

Due to high winds, the National Weather Service has issued a gale warning for areas around Lake Michigan and a lakeshore flood advisory for northeastern Illinois and northwestern Indiana.

North to northeast winds will gust to around 40 mph, with winds possibly reaching 50 mph near the lake. Winds were so strong, that waves were reaching 15 to upwards of 20 feet. 

The Chicago Police Department coordinated with the Park District and closed the bike path between 500 North and 1600 North Lake Shore Drive.

The gale warning is in effect until 9 p.m. Tuesday evening, which means there will be sustained winds of at least 30-39 mph, the weather service said.

The high winds were also causing headaches for travelers going in and out of Chicago by plane. “Flights at O’Hare International Airport were experiencing delays averaging 45 minutes,” said Karen Pride, director of public relations for the Chicago Department of Aviation. Midway was experiencing normal operations, she said.

Suburban commuter traffic was delayed significantly this morning after the winds caused a power line to go down along Metra’s North Central Line.

Additionally, portions of northwest Indiana and east central Illinois can expect heavy rains and possibly snow, causing slushy conditions.

Chicagoans took to Twitter and Facebook, with some using the obvious joke. “Living up to the nickname,” was what one Twitter user posted regarding the Chicago weather.

Twitter user Ian Sohn summed up the seemingly mutual city reaction when he posted:

“Permission to give the stink eye to anyone who gives the "You know, Chicago is not called the Windy City because of the wind" speech today.”

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