Out-of-market visitors to Chicago’s landmarks are recovering at various rates compared to pre-pandemic levels

Chart shows out of market visitation to Chicago Landmarks from 2017 to 2023
  • According to the Department of Aviation, around 96 million passengers traveled through both Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD) and Chicago Midway International Airport (MDW), which is only 9% lower than the number of passengers in 2019. 
  • Avison Young analyzed data from Placer.ai, focusing on visits to popular tourist attractions in the city by people living more than 50 miles away, to understand how the recovery compares to the average from three years before the pandemic (2017-2019).
  • Main tourist spots like Navy Pier and Millennium Park have bounced back to about 80% of their visitor numbers before the pandemic. However, shopping areas along Michigan Avenue, notably Water Tower Place and The Shops at North Bridge, have faced more challenges in their recovery.
  • Sporting and event venues have experienced a 2% increase in visitors from outside the city compared to before the pandemic. This uptick can be attributed partly to more significant events like Beyoncé and Taylor Swift concerts at Soldier Field and an increased number of concerts at Wrigley Field compared to the years 2017-2019.

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