Regional Transit Connections

How-To Guide: 
Making Regional Transit Connections

The Chicago area has several different public transportation providers, all of which connect conveniently with CTA services. The primary local and regional transit providers are CTA, Metra, and Pace.


CTA (that's us) runs buses (routes 1-206), and elevated and subway trains, serving the city and dozens of nearby suburbs. Most routes run daily through late evening, every 10 to 20 minutes. Sunday schedules apply on New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Learn more about our services at our Service Overview or System Guides.


Metra (Metropolitan Rail) runs 12 suburban commuter train lines from several downtown Chicago terminals. Rush hour service is frequent; otherwise every 1 to 2 hours. Most routes run daily. Fares are separate, but a Link-Up Pass is available to Metra monthly ticket holders for use on CTA.

Downtown Metra terminals include Chicago-Union Station (near Jackson/Canal), Chicago-Ogilvie Transportation Center (near Madison/Canal), Chicago-LaSalle Street Station (near LaSalle/Van Buren), and Chicago-Millennium Station (near Randolph/Michigan).

Learn more about Metra and get Metra schedules, maps, and more at


Pace (suburban bus) runs buses throughout the suburbs (routes 208 and above) and many routes connect with CTA. Major routes run daily through mid-evening, every 30 to 60 minutes. You can use your Ventra Card to ride.

Pace connects with CTA and Metra in dozens of locations.

Learn more about Pace at

Regional Trip Planning

You can plan your trip on all three of CTA, Metra and Pace using the RTA Trip Planner on the Web or by calling (312) 836-7000.

For full details, including TTY information and info about using Google Maps with transit, see our guide to Finding your way.


RTA System Map (icon)Regional System Map

The Regional Transportation Authority map shows city and suburban transit provided by CTA, Metra, and Pace.

RTA System Map Brochure (.pdf)

See also: CTA Maps

RTA Train Connections (icon)RTA Train Connections Map

This Regional Transportation Authority map shows a diagram (not to geographical scale) map of all CTA and Metra rail lines and indicates opportunities for connections between them.

RTA Train Connections Map (PDF)



Other transportation provider links:

Other public transportation providers that provide service to Chicago include Amtrak and the South Shore Line.

  • NICTD/South Shore Line (Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District)
    Operates service from downtown Chicago to South Bend, IN.
  • Amtrak
    Operates cross-country service to/from Chicago-Union Station. 


System Status



Red Line Normal Service
Blue Line Normal Service
Brown Line Normal Service
Green Line Normal Service
Orange Line Normal Service
Purple Line Normal Service
Pink Line Normal Service
Yellow Line Normal Service


Routes with Current Alerts (View All):
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