CHICAGO — Anyone taking to the streets Thursday should expect a potentially difficult commute as snow continues for a third day, meteorologists said.
Since snow started falling Tuesday, some North Side neighborhoods have seen nearly a foot of accumulation, National Weather Service meteorologist Eric Lenning said.
Additional accumulation Thursday could be anywhere from 3 to 10 inches depending on the area of the city, according to the weather service.
A full fleet of 287 city trucks were continuing to salt and plow streets in the morning. Chicagoans can follow the city's snow-clearing efforts via Plow Tracker.
A high of about 24 degrees is expected for the day, with temperatures likely to hover between the mid-teens to low 20s, according to the weather service. Wind chills could be below zero.
High winds could gust up to 30 mph, according to the weather service.
The weather service has issued a lake effect snow in effect until 6 p.m. and warned that periods of heavy snowfall could make visibility difficult for drivers. But Lenning said much of the snow would head toward Indiana in the afternoon and could slow down a bit for the Chicago area.
"It's just going to be kind of a persistent, moderate snow," Lenning said.
The storm let to the shutdown of the Divvy bike-sharing program as of noon. In an email, Divvy officials said the shutdown is temporary and is being done "to protect the safety of our members and staff."
The snow also led the Chicago Park District to close the city's outdoor ice rinks Thursday. The rinks, which are typically open seven days a week during the winter, are expected to reopen Friday.
And the weather prompted the Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago to close all 18 clubs Thursday. According to an emailed announcement, the clubs are expected to be open Friday, though club members are urged to call their local club or check online to be sure before going to a club on Friday.
As of 10:30 a.m., airlines at O'Hare Airport had canceled about 300 flights for the day due to the weather, and delays averaged about 45 minutes, according to the city's Aviation Department. Midway Airport reported delays of about 15 minutes with fewer than 10 cancelations. The agency cautioned travelers to check in with their airlines before heading to O'Hare or Midway.
By Friday, temperatures could dip, with a high of 16 degrees predicted. Wind chill could drop to as low as 12 below zero, according to the weather service. The day is expected to be a clear one, though there's about a 40 percent chance that flurries could return Saturday afternoon.
This week's temperatures are nothing compared to next week, when the high could be 2 degrees below zero on Monday and zero degrees Tuesday.