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Why No Artists Vend Work in Public Here in Chicago

map-of-banned-areas-2013-WEB

The map above is not even all the banned areas for peddling in Chicago; it is just all of the ones I was able to get through today.  I have one more location to fill in: the Maxwell Street Market, which I’m not too sure where that is located and the streets are not given.  Anything I drew on this map in black or hot pink ink is off limits: peddling is banned there subject to fines and possible arrest.  The two boxes on the right-hand, detailed view of Chicago’s downtown area is the core of the city and the Magnificent Mile shopping district where 99% of all tourists throng in droves.  Whole neighborhoods are banned, including mine in the 47th Ward and the entire 50th Ward north of me, age old bastions of white money.  I once saw squad cars drive across the baseball diamonds at Welles Park to round up and arrest ice cream sellers, poor old Mexican grandpas were shoved into the backs.

This does make the peddler’s license I paid $100 for mighty useless.  All sports arenas are banned, the main core of downtown is banned, all city sponsored events are banned and alleys at night are banned which is going to cut in my crack cocaine sales, lol.  You can read the complete legal verbiage below if you are a real stickler for details. Chicago has a gauntlet of barriers to trying to use public space for any commercial reason and this is on top of the weeks it took me to get a state tax ID to apply for a peddler’s license that is so severely restricted it is really disgusting.

I see a few niches I might be able to work within to try and sell paintings, photography, zines, hats I made and the like.  I spoke with an attorney today and I am going to speak to two more tomorrow.  There are different angles on what may possible be challenged or changed in the current laws.  This summer a tiny handful of street musicians with permits have appeared for the first time in my life.  They have much simpler and less restrictive rules.  Artists and people vending general merchandise are screwed under the current city code.  If you think of New York City with it lively and cosmopolitan street sellers of food, art and merchandise, know that absolutely none of that goes on here.  The few food trucks that exist skirt the city and cling to the suburbs and downtown is prolific with beggars because the laws making panhandling illegal were overturned as First Amendment violations.  I walked three blocks and over a dozen people begged me for money but if I tried to sell a painting in the same place, I would be in violation of the law.

UPDATE 7/11/2013: I started this process on 5/22/2013, got my peddling license in 6/10/2013 and I have not gotten out to sell for one day and not even single minute yet. Still meeting with attorneys and doing research. My entire 47th Ward / whole neighborhood is banned, entire nearby 50th Ward is banned, all of downtown, Mag Mile, Millennium Park, all sports arena neighborhoods and the tourist areas are banned. I may need to apply for another permit! I met with my Alderman last night and he wants a month to review the laws and restrictions. I spent another 4 hours compiling research and writing letters today. Cost of peddler’s license: $100. Amount of art and crafts sold: $0.  I have totally lost track of all the hours I have put into this since May.

BookmarkCHAPTER 4-244
STREET PEDDLERS AND STREET PERFORMERS*

Editor’s note – Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 116, renamed, amended, and inserted articles into Ch. 4-244.

Article I.  General Provisions

4-244-010     Definitions.

4-244-020     Reserved.

Article II.  Peddlers

4-244-030     License – Required.

4-244-040     License – Application.

4-244-041     Issuance of license; when prohibited.

4-244-060     License – Fee.

4-244-070     Reserved.

4-244-080     Identification on peddlers’ vehicles.

4-244-090     Vehicle emblems.

4-244-100     Badges.

4-244-110     Assistants on vehicles.

4-244-120     Hours of business.

4-244-130     Peddling in vicinity of Wrigley Field.

4-244-140     Prohibited districts.

4-244-141     Speech peddling – Additional area allowed.

4-244-145     Peddling in vicinity of Comiskey Park.

4-244-146     Peddling in vicinity of New Maxwell Street Market.

4-244-147     Peddling in vicinity of United Center.

4-244-150     Flower peddling prohibited.

4-244-160     Reserved.

Article III.  Street Performers

4-244-161     Permit – Required.

4-244-162     Permit – Conditions.

4-244-163     Permit – Display.

4-244-164     Duties – Prohibited Acts – Other requirements.

4-244-165     Acceptance of contributions.

Article IV.  Enforcement

4-244-170     Violation – Penalty.

4-244-175     Special events.

ARTICLE I.  GENERAL PROVISIONS

Bookmark4-244-010  Definitions.

As used in this chapter:

“Commissioner” means the commissioner of business affairs and consumer protection or the commissioner’s designee.

“Department” means the department of business affairs and consumer protection.

“Licensee” means any person holding or required to hold a license under this Chapter 4-244.

“Millennium Park” has the meaning ascribed to the term in Section 10-36-140.

“Peddler” or “street peddler” means any individual who, going from place to place, whether on private property or on the public way, sells, offers for sale, sells and delivers, barters or exchanges any goods, wares, merchandise, wood, fruits, vegetables or produce from a vehicle or otherwise.  The term “peddler” does not include (1) a “grower” or “producer” as defined in Section 4-12-010 of this Code, or (2) any class of peddler specifically defined and licensed or required to be licensed under other chapters of this Code, including, but not limited to, (i) any junk peddler within the meaning of Section 4-6-150; (ii) any merchant within the meaning of Chapter 4-212 of this Code, or (iii) any mobile food dispenser within the meaning of Chapter 4-8 of this Code.

“Perform” means and includes, but is not limited to, the following activities: acting, singing, playing musical instruments, pantomime, juggling, magic, dancing or reciting.

“Performer” means any person holding or required to hold a street performer permit under this chapter.

“Public area” means any sidewalk, parkway, playground or other public way located within the corporate limits of the City.  The term “public area” does not include transit platforms and stations operated by the Chicago Transit Authority or the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

“Special event” means any special event conducted by the City of Chicago, including, but not limited to. events conducted with the permission of the Chicago Park District in parks or other facilities operated by the Chicago Park District.(Prior code § 160-1; Amend Coun. J. 10-7-09, p. 72718, § 3; Amend Coun. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 117)

Bookmark4-244-020  Reserved.

Editor’s note – Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 118, repealed former § 4-244-020, which pertained to classifications.

ARTICLE II.  PEDDLERS

Bookmark4-244-030  License – Required.

(a)     It shall be unlawful for any person to engage in the business of a peddler without first having obtained a street peddler a license under this chapter.

(b)     Any person violating this section shall be fined not less than $50.00 nor more than $200.00 for each offense.  Each day such violation continues shall constitute a separate and distinct offense.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 119)

Bookmark4-244-040  License – Application.

An application for a street peddler license under this chapter shall be made in conformity with the general requirements of this Code relating to applications for licenses.  Such application shall identify the type of commodity or merchandise that such peddler desires or intends to sell, offer for sale, sell and deliver, barter or exchange.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 120)

Bookmark4-244-041  Issuance of license; when prohibited.

(a)     The commissioner of business affairs and consumer protection shall issue a peddler’s license to an applicant who tenders a completed, accurate application and the appropriate fee, unless issuance of a license is prohibited under subsection (b) of this section.

(b)     No peddler’s license shall be issued (a) to any natural person who is under the age of 16 years on the date of application; (b) to any applicant whose license under this chapter has been revoked within one year immediately preceding the date of application; or (c) to any applicant who already holds a license under this chapter, while the pre-existing license is suspended.

(Added Coun. J. 3-5-03, p. 105167, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 7-27-05, p. 53211, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 11-19-08, p. 47220, Art. V, § 5)

Bookmark4-244-060  License – Fee.

The fee for peddlers’ licenses shall be as set forth in Section 4-5-010.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. J. 11-15-06, p. 92532, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 1-13-10, p. 83191, § 1)

Bookmark4-244-070  Reserved.

     Editor’s note – Coun. J. 11-15-06, p. 92532, § 1, repealed § 4-244-070, which pertained to license term.

Bookmark4-244-080  Identification on peddlers’ vehicles.

Every wagon, cart or other vehicle used by a licensed peddler in or about his business shall have the name of the owner and his address plainly, distinctly and legibly painted in letters and figures at least two inches in height in a conspicuous place on the outside of each side of every such wagon, cart or other vehicle, and such name and address shall be kept so painted plainly and distinctly at all times while such wagon, cart or other vehicle is in use during the continuance of the license covering the use of such wagon, cart or other vehicle.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465)

Bookmark4-244-090  Vehicle emblems.

Every peddler whose license entitles him to use a wagon, motor vehicle, handcart, pushcart or other vehicle shall obtain from the city clerk, at the time such peddler’s license is issued under this chapter, a metal plate or other suitable emblem for each such vehicle to be used by such peddler to conduct his or her business.  Such plate or emblem shall be of a different color and design for every license period and shall have stamped thereon a number corresponding to the number of such peddler’s license.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 121)

Bookmark4-244-100  Badges.

Every individual licensed under this chapter as a peddler, while engaged in the business of peddling, shall wear conspicuously on the outside of his or her outside coat a metal badge or shield indicating that such individual is licensed as a “Chicago Street Peddler”.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 122)

Bookmark4-244-110  Assistants on vehicles.

Upon each wagon or other vehicle for which a vehicle emblem has been obtained under Section 4-244-090, only one helper or assistant to the driver or operator of such wagon or vehicle shall be allowed.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 123)

Bookmark4-244-120  Hours of business.

No one licensee under this chapter shall peddle any article or thing in any public alley on any day in the week between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.  Any person who violates this subsection shall be subject to a fine  of not less than $50.00 and not more than $200.00 for each offense.  Each day such violation continues shall constitute a separate and distinct offense.  Provided, however, that this section shall not apply to any licensee under this chapter operating in accordance with Section 4-244-130.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 124)

Bookmark4-244-130  Peddling in vicinity of Wrigley Field.

Notwithstanding the limitations of Section 4-244-120 but subject to the limitations of Section 4-244-140(b) and Section 4-388-175(h), a person licensed as a peddler may peddle merchandise within 1,000 feet of Wrigley Field; provided that only a peddler selling from packs, baskets or similar containers may peddle merchandise on the public way. A peddler operating under this section shall be mobile, and shall not set up tables, stands or other structures, or obstruct or block the public way with his wares or merchandise. However, a peddler operating under this section may peddle merchandise from a cart, table or temporary stand on private property without obstructing the public way, if the peddler possesses written permission from the property owner to do so.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. J. 3-1-06, p. 71708, § 1)

Bookmark4-244-140  Prohibited districts.

(a)     No one having a peddler’s license shall peddle any merchandise or any other article or thing whatsoever, at any time, within districts which have been or shall be hereafter designated by the city council. A description of such districts shall be kept in the office of the city clerk.

(b)     Peddling is prohibited as described in the following indicated areas:  No person shall peddle any merchandise on the sidewalk immediately adjacent to Wrigley Field; such sidewalk consisting of the north side of Addison Street, the east side of Clark Street, the south side of Waveland Avenue, and the west side of Sheffield Avenue. For purposes of this subsection (b), the term “sidewalk” shall mean that portion of the public way extending from the perimeter of the Wrigley Field stadium structure to the street curb or curb line.

(1)     Peddling is prohibited on both sides of North Milwaukee Avenue, between North Kedzie Avenue and West Belmont Avenue and on intersecting streets between North Kedzie Avenue and West Belmont Avenue within 100 feet of the closest right-of- way line of North Milwaukee Avenue.

(2)     Peddling is prohibited on North Cicero Avenue (west side) to West Fullerton Avenue (north) to North Lamon Avenue (east side) to West Clybourn Avenue (south). Peddling is prohibited on West Le Moyne Street (south side), North Lawndale Avenue to West North Avenue (south side) to North Central Park Avenue.

(3)     Peddling is prohibited at any time within the following designated district:

Beginning at the intersection of West Belmont Avenue and the centerline of the north branch of the Chicago River; thence northerly on the centerline of the north branch of the Chicago River to West Wilson Avenue; thence east on West Wilson Avenue to North Western Avenue; thence north on North Western Avenue to West Gunnison Street; thence west on West Gunnison Street to North Rockwell Street; thence north on North Rockwell Street to West Winnemac Avenue; thence east on West Winnemac Avenue to North Western Avenue; thence north on North Western Avenue to West Foster Avenue; thence east on West Foster Avenue to North Winchester Avenue; thence south on North Winchester Avenue to West Winona Avenue; thence east of West Winona Avenue to North Wolcott Avenue; thence north on North Wolcott Avenue to West Foster Avenue; thence east on West Foster Avenue to North Ashland Avenue; thence south on North Ashland Avenue to West Lawrence Avenue; thence east on West Lawrence Avenue to North Dover Street; thence south on North Dover Street to West Montrose Avenue; thence west on West Montrose Avenue to North Clark Street; thence southerly on North Clark Street to West Byron Street; thence west on West Byron Street to North Greenview Avenue; thence south on North Greenview Avenue to West Grace Street; thence west on West Grace Street to North Ravenswood Avenue; thence south on North Ravenswood Avenue to West Addison Street; thence west on West Addison Street to North Western Avenue; thence south on North Western Avenue to West Belmont Avenue; thence west on West Belmont Avenue to the place of beginning.

(4)     Except where otherwise allowed under this chapter, peddling is prohibited at any time within the following designated district, which may be referred to as the “Central District”:

Beginning at the intersection of the south bank of the Chicago River and Lake Michigan; thence west to the north side of Lake Street; thence west to the west side of Halsted Street; thence south to the south side of Depot Street; thence east on Depot Street and Depot Street, extended to the centerline of the south branch of the Chicago River; thence north to the south side of Roosevelt Road; thence east to the west side of State Street; thence south to the north side of 13th Street; thence east to the west side of Michigan Avenue; thence south to the north side of Cermak Road; thence west to the centerline of Clark Street; thence north to the north side of Cullerton Street; thence west extended to the centerline of Grove Street; thence southwest to the Pennsylvania Central Railroad; thence south to the south side of Cermak Road; thence east to the west side of Princeton Avenue; thence south to the south side of 24th Place; thence east to the east side of Wentworth Avenue; thence north to the south side of Cermak Road; thence east to the west side of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive; thence south to the north side of 24th Street; thence east extended to Lake Michigan; thence north along Lake Michigan to the place of beginning.

(5)     Peddling is prohibited at any time within the following designated areas:

South Ewing Avenue (both sides) between south 9400 and 10900;

East 106th Street (both sides) between South Mackinaw Avenue and South State Line Road;

South Baltimore Avenue (both sides) between 13000 and South Brainard Avenue;

South Brandon Avenue (both sides) between 13200 and South Brainard Avenue;

East 132nd Street between South Houston Avenue and South Burley Avenue;

East 133rd Street between South Houston Avenue and South Burley Avenue;

East 134th Street between South Houston Avenue and South Burley Avenue; and

East 135th Street between South Houston Avenue and South Burley Avenue.

(6)     Peddling is prohibited at any time within the following designated areas:

The area known as:

Beginning at the intersection of North Western Avenue and West Cornelia Avenue extended; thence north on North Western Avenue to West Addison Street; thence east on West Addison Street extended to the northwest corner of West Addison Street and North Ravenswood Avenue; thence south extended to the northwest corner of North Ravenswood Avenue and West Cornelia Avenue; thence west extended back to the northeast corner of North Cornelia Avenue and North Western Avenue.

and

The area known as:

Beginning at the intersection of the northeast corner of North Ravenswood Avenue and West Addison Street extended north to the southeast corner of North Ravenswood Avenue and West Grace Street; thence east extended to the northwest corner of North Ashland Avenue and West Grace Street; thence south extended to the northwest corner of West Addison Street and North Ashland Avenue; thence west extended to the northwest corner of West Addison Street and North Ravenswood Avenue.

and

Beginning at the intersection of the northwest corner of West Wilson Avenue and North Western Avenue extended to the southwest corner of North Lincoln Avenue and North Western Avenue; thence continuing north to the southwest corner of North Lincoln Avenue and West Gunnison Street; thence west extended along West Gunnison Street to the southeast corner of the intersection of West Gunnison Street and North Rockwell Street; thence south extended to the southwest corner of West Lawrence Avenue and North Rockwell Street; thence west extended to the Chicago River; thence south along the Chicago River extended to West Wilson Avenue; thence east extended to the northwest corner of West Wilson Avenue and North Western Avenue.

(7)     Peddling of any merchandise or other articles whatsoever within the following designated areas is prohibited:

South Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive (both sides) between 7500 and 9500 south;

South Cottage Grove Avenue (both sides) between 7100 and 7900 south;

South Cottage Grove Avenue (west side only) between 7900 south and 9200 south;

South Lafayette Avenue, between 6900 south and 7900 south;

South State Street, between 6900 south and 9500 south;

East 69th Street, between South Wentworth Avenue and South Cottage Grove Avenue;

East 71st Street, between South Vincennes Avenue and South Cottage Grove Avenue;

East 75th Street, between South Perry Avenue and South Cottage Grove Avenue;

East 79th Street, between South State Street and South Cottage Grove Avenue;

East 87th Street, between South State Street and South Cottage Grove Avenue;

East 95th Street, between South State Street and South Dr. Martin King, Jr. Drive.

(8)     Retail sales of any article shall be prohibited along the right-of-way of the City of Chicago or on any vacant lot within the 50th Ward boundaries which are:

The southwest corner of West Howard Street to the southwest corner of North Western Avenue traveling south on North Western Avenue to West Touhy Avenue; east on West Touhy Avenue to North Ridge Boulevard, proceeding southeasterly on North Ridge Boulevard to a point at West Columbia Avenue; thence east on West Columbia Avenue to North Ravenswood Avenue, south on North Ravenswood Avenue to West Granville Avenue, west on West Granville Avenue to North Oakley Avenue, south on North Oakley Avenue to West Glenlake Avenue, west on West Glenlake Avenue to North Campbell Avenue, south on North Campbell Avenue to West Peterson Avenue, west on West Peterson Avenue to North Lawndale Avenue, north on North Lawndale Avenue to West Granville Avenue, west on West Granville Avenue to North Ridgeway Avenue, north on North Ridgeway Avenue to West Devon Avenue, east on West Devon Avenue to North Kedzie Avenue, north on North Kedzie Avenue to West Howard Street, east on West Howard Street to the place of beginning.

The commissioner of business affairs and consumer protection is herewith authorized to enforce the restriction against peddlers in the prescribed areas and is granted the authority with the aid of the police department to close any peddling operation, to cease and desist upon discovery within the above described zone.

(9)     Peddling of any merchandise or other articles whatsoever within the following designated areas is prohibited:

South Stony Island Avenue (both sides) between 6700 and 7500 south;

East 71st Street (both sides) between South Yates Avenue and South Cottage Grove Avenue.

(10)     Peddling of merchandise or other articles whatsoever within the following designated areas is prohibited:

On  75th Street between Stony Island Avenue and Paxton Avenue;

On Stony Island Avenue between 79th Street and 95th Street;

On the south side of 79th Street between Cottage Grove Avenue and Drexel Avenue;

On 79th Street between Drexel Avenue and Blackstone Avenue;

On the south side of 79th Street between Blackstone Avenue and Stony Island Avenue;

On 79th Street between Stony Island Avenue and Paxton Avenue;

On 95th Street between Cottage Grove Avenue and Stony Island Avenue;

On the north side of 95th Street between Stony Island Avenue and Jeffery Boulevard.

(11)     Peddling of any merchandise or other articles whatsoever within the following designated areas is prohibited:

On Clark Street, between Diversey Avenue and Armitage Avenue;

On Stockton Drive, between Fullerton Avenue and LaSalle Drive.

(12)     Peddling of any merchandise or other articles whatsoever within the following designated area is prohibited:

beginning at the intersection of United States Highway 14 and Illinois Route 50; thence south on Illinois Route 50 to West Lawrence Avenue; thence east on West Lawrence Avenue to North Elston Avenue; thence southeast on North Elston Avenue to West Montrose Avenue; thence west on West Montrose Avenue to North Kedvale Avenue; thence south on North Kedvale Avenue to West Cullom Avenue; thence west on West Cullom Avenue to North Keeler Avenue; thence north on North Keeler Avenue to West Montrose Avenue; thence west on West Montrose Avenue to North Knox Avenue; thence southeast on North Knox Avenue to the centerline of the Soo Line Railroad; thence south and southeast on the centerline of the Soo Line Railroad to the centerline of the Chicago and North Western Railroad; thence southeast on the centerline of the Chicago and North Western Railroad to West Irving Park Road; thence west on West Irving Park Road to Illinois Route 50; thence south on Illinois Route 50 to West Waveland Avenue; thence west on West Waveland Avenue to North Laramie Avenue; thence north on North Laramie Avenue to West Montrose Avenue; thence west on West Montrose Avenue to North Central Avenue; thence north on North Central Avenue to West Windsor Avenue; thence west on West Windsor Avenue to North Major Avenue; thence north on North Major Avenue to West Eastwood Avenue; thence west on West Eastwood Avenue to North Austin Avenue; thence north on North Austin Avenue to West Lawrence Avenue; thence east on West Lawrence Avenue to North Mason Avenue; thence north on North Mason Avenue to West Gunnison Street; thence west on West Gunnison Street to North Nagle Avenue; thence north on North Nagle Avenue to West Devon Avenue; thence east on West Devon Avenue to the centerline of the north branch of the Chicago River; thence southeast on the centerline of the north branch of the Chicago River to the centerline of the Soo Line Railroad; thence northwest on the centerline of the Soo Line Railroad to North Central Avenue; thence northeast on North Central Avenue to West Tahoma Avenue; thence southeast on West Tahoma Avenue to North Minnehaha Avenue; thence southwest on North Minnehaha Avenue to West Devon Avenue; thence east on West Devon Avenue to North Spokane Avenue; thence southwest on North Spokane Avenue to West Leoti Avenue; thence southeast on West Leoti Avenue to North Le Mai Avenue; thence northeast on North Le Mai Avenue to West Hiawatha Avenue; thence southeast on West Hiawatha Avenue and West Hiawatha Avenue extended to the centerline of the Edens Expressway (I-94); thence south on the centerline of the Edens Expressway (I-94) to United States Highway 14; thence east on United States Highway 14 to the place of beginning.

(13)     Peddling of any merchandise or other articles whatsoever within the following designated area is prohibited:

beginning at the intersection of the centerline of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad and West 71st Street; thence south on the centerline of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad to the centerline of the Belt Railway of Chicago; thence east on the centerline of the Belt Railway of Chicago to South Honore Street; thence south on South Honore Street to West 79th Street; thence east on West 79th Street to South Wood Street; thence south on South Wood Street to West 81st Street; thence east on West 81st Street to South Marshfield Avenue; thence south on South Marshfield Avenue to West 83rd Street; thence east on West 83rd Street to South Ashland Avenue; thence south on South Ashland Avenue to West 87th Street; thence west on West 87th Street to South Cicero Avenue; thence north on South Cicero Avenue to West 83rd Street, thence east on West 83rd Street to South Pulaski Road; thence north on South Pulaski Road to West 74th Place; thence east on West 74th Place and West 74th Place extended to the centerline of the Grand Trunk Railway; thence north on the centerline of the Grand Trunk Railway to West Marquette Road; thence east on West Marquette Road to South California Avenue; thence south on South California Avenue to West Lithuanian Plaza Court; thence east on West Lithuanian Plaza Court to South Maplewood Avenue; thence south on South Maplewood Avenue to West 70th Street; thence east on West 70th Street to South Campbell Avenue; thence south on South Campbell Avenue to West 71st Street; thence east on West 71st Street to the place of beginning.

(14)     Peddling of any merchandise or other articles whatsoever within the following designated bounded area is prohibited:

Beginning at the intersection of Laflin Street and Monroe Street; thence south on Laflin Street to Jackson Boulevard; thence west on Jackson Boulevard to Paulina Street; thence north on Paulina Street to Monroe Street; thence east on Monroe Street to Laflin Street.

(15)     Peddling of any merchandise or other articles whatsoever within the following designated bounded area is prohibited:

Beginning at the intersection of Newland Avenue and Belden Avenue; thence east on Belden Avenue to Oak Park Avenue; thence south on Oak Park Avenue to Shakespeare Avenue; thence west on Shakespeare Avenue to Newland Avenue.

Beginning at the intersection of Sayre Avenue and Cortland Street; thence east on Cortland Street to Newland Avenue; thence south on Newland Avenue to Bloomingdale Avenue; thence west on Bloomingdale Avenue to Sayre Avenue.

Beginning at the intersection of Newcastle Avenue and George Street; thence east on George Street to Oak Park Avenue; thence south on Oak Park Avenue to Diversey Avenue; thence west on Diversey Avenue to Newcastle Avenue.

Beginning at the intersection of Newcastle Avenue and Barry Avenue; thence east on Barry Avenue to Oak Park Avenue; thence south on Oak Park Avenue to Wellington Avenue; thence west on Wellington Avenue to Newcastle Avenue.

Beginning at the intersection of Nora Avenue and Addison Street; thence east on Addison Street to New England Avenue; thence south on New England Avenue to School Street; thence west on School Street to Sayre Avenue; thence north on Sayre Avenue to Cornelia Avenue; thence west on Cornelia Avenue to Nora Avenue.

Beginning at the intersection of Oleander Avenue and Addison Street; thence east on Addison Street to Osceola Avenue; thence south on Osceola Avenue to School Street; thence west on School Street to Oleander Avenue.

Beginning at the intersection of Panama Avenue and Addison Street; thence east on Addison Street to Orange Avenue; thence south on Orange Avenue to Cornelia Avenue; thence west on Cornelia Avenue to Panama Avenue.

Beginning at the intersection of Paris Avenue and Grace Street; thence east on Grace Street to Panama Avenue; thence south on Panama Avenue to Addison Street; thence west on Addison Street to Paris Avenue.

(16)     Plaza Tenochtitlan, located south of the intersection of South Blue Island Avenue and South Loomis Street.

(17)     The area bounded by and including Schubert Avenue, Meade Avenue, the north side of Wrightwood Avenue, and Narragansett Avenue.

Also, on the east side only of Meade Avenue, between Wrightwood Avenue and Fullerton Avenue; and also on both sides of Altgeld Avenue, between Meade Avenue and McVicker Avenue.

(18)     Peddling is prohibited at any time within the following designated district:

Beginning at the intersection of North Michigan Avenue and East Erie Street; thence northerly on both sides of North Michigan Avenue to East Chestnut Street; thence west on both sides of East Chestnut Street to North State Street; thence southerly on both sides of North State Street to West Chestnut Street; thence westerly on both sides of West Chestnut Street to North Dearborn Street; thence southerly on both sides of North Dearborn Street to West Erie Street; thence easterly on both sides of West Erie Street to an intersection of West Erie Street and North State Street.

(19)     On North Central Avenue (both sides) between West Fullerton Avenue and West Diversey Avenue.

(20)     Peddling of any merchandise or other articles whatsoever is prohibited at any time within the following designated areas:

West 79th Street, on the south side of the street, from South Lafayette Avenue to South Damen Avenue;

West 83rd Street, on both sides of the street, from South Lafayette Avenue to South Damen Avenue; and

West 87th Street, on both sides of the street, from South Lafayette Avenue to South Damen Avenue.

(c)     Any person who shall be found in violation of this section shall be fined not less than $200.00 nor more than $500.00 for each offense, and each day such violation shall continue shall be deemed a distinct and separate offense.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. J. 6-9-93, pp. 33609, 33610, 33612; 7-13-95, p. 4599; Amend Coun. J. 6-10-96, p. 23875; Amend Coun. J. 6-4-97, p. 46440; Amend Coun. J. 5-12-99, p. 2313; Amend Coun. J. 7-29-03, p. 5693, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 7-29-03, p. 5695, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 10-1-03, p. 8863, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 6-29-05, p. 52172, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 9-14-05, p. 54713, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 12-14-05, p. 67159, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 3-1-06, p. 71708, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 6-28-06, p. 79234, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 6-11-08, p. 29426, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 6-11-08, p. 29429, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 11-19-08, p. 47220, Art. V, § 5; Amend Coun. J. 4-22-09, p. 58303; Amend Coun. J. 4-22-09, p. 58588; Amend Coun. J. 5-13-09, p. 61290, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 6-3-09, p. 63970, § 2; Amend Coun. J. 6-30-10, p. 95368, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 10-5-11, p. 8808, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 9-12-12, p. 33056, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 10-3-12, p. 35385, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 11-8-12, p. 38872, § 124; Amend Coun. J. 1-17-13, p. 45347; Amend Coun. J. 3-13-13, 48630, § 1)

Bookmark4-244-141  Speech peddling – Additional area allowed.

(a)     Definitions.  For purposes of this section, “speech peddling” shall mean where a licensed peddler sells or exchanges for value anything containing words, printing or pictures that predominantly communicates a non-commercial message.

For purposes of this section, a “non-commercial message” may include, without limitation, a message relating to political, religious, artistic, and/or any other non-commercial idea(s). Where the words, printing and/or pictures do nothing more than identify a product, such as a brand name or logo, or identify the peddled item’s origin or place of manufacture, or otherwise do nothing more than advertise or promote the product itself, the item shall be not be deemed to communicate a “non-commercial message”.

For purposes of this section, “predominately communicates” shall mean that the non-commercial message is the primary purpose of the item which is being sold. Factors that should be considered in determining whether an item predominantly communicates a non-commercial message include: (i) the percentage of the item containing non-commercial printing and/or pictures, (ii) the size of the lettering or pictures, and (iii) any other factor otherwise indicating that the primary purpose of the item being sold is to communicate a non-commercial message. In no event may there be any commercial message which occupies more space on the item than does the non-commercial message.

For purposes of this section, items that may, under the relevant criteria, predominantly communicate a non-commercial message may include T-shirts, books, audiotapes, videotapes, compact disks, posters, flags, banners, signs, buttons, toys, balloons or any other item.

(b)     Speech peddling locations.  There shall be at least ten locations within the Central District, where peddling is otherwise prohibited under Section 4-244-140 above, including at least four locations within Grant Park, where speech peddling by up to five peddlers per location shall be allowed by permit; provided that no site in Millennium Park, or any site on any sidewalk that abuts Millennium Park, as that term is defined in section 10-36-140, shall be selected as a location in the Central District.  Such locations shall be selected by the department of business affairs and consumer protection with the advice of the department of housing and economic development, the department of transportation, and the police department, regarding pedestrian and vehicular traffic flow, use, density and public safety; provided that, for locations in Grant Park near special events sponsored by the city, the department of cultural affairs and special events shall select the sites during the relevant time periods and the number of Grant Park sites may change.  In addition, because of anticipated high demand for speech peddling during special events, permits shall be issued for four- hour time slots and may be issued for more than five persons at a time per location.  No person shall be allowed to engage in speech peddling within the Central District without a speech peddling permit, and doing so without such a permit shall be a violation of this section.

(c)     Speech peddling permits.

(1)     All licensed peddlers who wish to apply for a speech peddling permit must complete and submit to the department of business affairs and consumer protection a written permit application, which shall require the following information:

A.     Name and peddler’s license number.

B.     Any preferred location(s).

C.     A description of the item(s) he or she will be selling that “predominantly communicates a non- commercial message”, including description of the type of item(s) to be sold, the nature of the communication, and a picture or graphic depicting the item(s).  This information is requested solely for purposes of determining that the item is within the definition of “speech peddling”, and it shall not be used for evaluating the message itself.

(2)     Speech peddling permit applications shall be accepted by the department of business affairs and consumer protection on a monthly basis for speech peddling in the following month.  Permits issued shall pertain only to the item(s) described in the permit application.  Where the application shows that the “speech peddling” definition has been met, then the permit request shall be granted, unless the demand for permits is greater than availability.  Where demands exceed availability, the department shall assign permits on a lottery basis and may not be able to fulfill requests for specific locations.  There shall be a preference lottery for applicants who failed to receive permits in prior permit lotteries. Applicants shall be notified of the permit grant or denial within a reasonable time, as further specified by regulation.

(3)     Applicants who were denied a speech peddling permit because of heavy demand may make a request, at the time of their next application, that their application be put in a preference lottery.  Applicants who were denied a speech peddling permit (i) because their request was outside the scope of the “speech peddling” definition, or (ii) after not receiving a permit after two consecutive applications, may appeal to the commissioner of business affairs and consumer protection, or his or her designee, on a form provided by the department.  Any such appeal must be filed within ten calendar days of such denial.  The appeal form, together with the relevant application(s) and denial(s), shall be reviewed by the commissioner, or his or her designee, and he or she shall issue a written determination within one week whether to uphold or reverse the denial or to grant an alternative permit date.

(d)     Identification.  All speech peddlers must carry identification and permit authorization from the department, in a form to be further described by regulation.

(e)     No pushcarts.  A peddler selling in a speech peddling location pursuant to permit may only sell from packs, baskets or similar containers, shall be mobile, shall not set up tables, stands or other structures, and shall not use pushcarts, place items on the sidewalk or street, or otherwise obstruct or block the public way with his wares or merchandise.

(f)     Regulations.  The department of business affairs and consumer protection has the authority to, and shall, promulgate regulations governing speech peddling permits and activities under this section.  The department of cultural affairs and special events has the authority to, and shall, promulgate regulations governing the locations, time, and manner of speech peddling during all city-sponsored special events, including during their set-up and cleanup.

(g)     Violations.  Any person who shall be found in violation of this section, including the implementing regulations, shall be fined not less than $50.00 nor more than $200.00 for each offense, and each day such violation shall continue shall be deemed a distinct and separate offense.

(Added Coun. J. 5-12-99, p. 2313; Amend Coun. J. 7-27-05, p. 53211, § 1; Amend Coun. J. 5-9-07, p. 104052, § ; Amend Coun. J. 5-9-07, p. 104052, § 5; Amend Coun. J. 11-19-08, p. 47220, Art. V, § 5; Amend Coun. J. 11-17-10, p. 106597, Art. VII, § 2, and Art. IX, § 4)

Bookmark4-244-145  Peddling in vicinity of Comiskey Park.

No person shall peddle merchandise of any type on any portion of the public way within 1,000 feet of Comiskey Park. A person holding a valid peddler’s license may peddle merchandise while on private property within 1,000 feet of Comiskey Park only from a cart, table or temporary stand on private property without obstructing the public way, and pursuant to prior written permission from the property owner to do so. The provisions of this section shall be in addition to any other limitation on or regulation of peddlers. Any person who violates any provision of this section shall be fined not less than $200.00 nor more than $500.00 for each offense, and each day such violation shall continue shall be deemed a distinct and separate offense.

(Added Coun. J. 3-8-93, p. 29484)

Bookmark4-244-146  Peddling in vicinity of New Maxwell Street Market.

No person shall peddle merchandise of any type on any portion of the public way within 1,000 feet of any portion of the New Maxwell Street Market, as set forth in Section 4-11-010.

(Added Coun. J. 4-13-94, p. 49201)

Bookmark4-244-147  Peddling in vicinity of United Center.

No person shall peddle merchandise of any type on any portion of the public way within 1,000 feet of the United Center. A person holding a valid peddler’s license may peddle merchandise while on private property within 1,000 feet of the United Center only from a cart, table or temporary stand on private property without obstructing the public way, and pursuant to prior written permission from the property owner to do so. The provisions of this section shall be in addition to any other limitation on or regulation of peddlers. Any person who violates any provision of this section shall be fined not less than $200.00 nor more than $500.00 for each offense, and each day such violation shall continue shall be deemed a distinct and separate offense.

(Added Coun. J. 10-2-95, p. 8258)

Bookmark4-244-150  Flower peddling prohibited.

No person licensed hereunder shall have the privilege of peddling flowers, growing plants, or floral bouquets or designs; provided, however, that nothing in this section prohibits the peddling of flowers within a duly licensed tavern or restaurant, with the consent of the licensee of the tavern or restaurant.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. J. 9-4-02, p. 92885, § 1)

Bookmark4-244-160  Reserved.

Editor’s note – Coun. J. 10-3-01, p. 68139, § 2, repealed § 4-244-160, which pertained to National Kids’ Day peanut sales.

Article III.  Street Performers

Bookmark4-244-161  Permit – Required.

No person may perform in a public area without first having obtained a permit issued under Section 4-244-162 of this chapter.

(Added Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 125)

Bookmark4-244-162  Permit – Conditions.

(a)     A permit shall be issued by the commissioner to each applicant for such permit in exchange for a completed application and a permit fee in the amount set forth in Chapter 4-5 of this Code.

(b)     A completed application for a permit under this section shall contain the applicant’s name, address and telephone number and shall be signed by the applicant.

(c)     The permit required under this section shall contain (1) the name and permit number or department account number of the permit holder; (2) a clear photograph of the permit holder; and (3) the year in which the permit was issued.  The permit shall be in a form that can be displayed.

(d)     The permit required under this section shall be nontransferable.

(e)     Upon issuing a permit under this section, the commissioner shall also issue to the performer named in such permit a printed copy of this chapter.

(Added Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 125; Amend Coun. J. 11-8-12, p. 38872, § 125)

Bookmark4-244-163  Permit – Display.

A performer shall carry and display a permit on his or person at all times while performing in a public area, and shall wear the permit in a manner that is clearly visible to the public.

(Added Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 125)

Bookmark4-244-164  Duties – Prohibited Acts – Other requirements.

(a)     A performance may take place in any public area, but only between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. on Sundays through Thursdays and 10:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

(b)     A performer may not block the passage of the public through a public area.  If a sufficient crowd gathers to see or hear a performer such that the passage of the public through a public area is blocked, a police officer may disperse that portion of the crowd that is blocking the passage of the public, or may order the performer to cease performing at that location until the conditions causing the congestion have abated.

(c)     A performer may not perform on the public way so as to obstruct access to private property, except with the prior consent of the owner or manager of the property.

(d)     (1)     A performer shall comply in all respects with the relevant portions of the noise and vibration control provisions of the Chicago Noise Ordinance, Chapter 8-32 of the Municipal Code, and all other applicable Code provisions, which prohibit a street performer from generating any sound by any means so that the sound is louder than an average conversational level at a distance of 100 feet or more, measured either horizontally or vertically from the point of generation. Failure to comply with these noise control limitations shall constitute a violation of this subsection (d)(1) and shall subject the violator to the penalties set forth in subsection (e) of this section and to the fine set forth in Section 4-244-170(b).

Any performer whose performance in the area bounded by Lake Michigan on the east, Oak Street on the north, Congress Parkway on the south and LaSalle Street and Wacker Drive on the west (including both sides of the named boundary streets), has exceeded the noise limitations set forth in Section 8-32-070, and restated in this subsection (d)(1), and who is given notice thereof and requested to move by a police officer, shall move the location of his or her performance at least two city blocks from the location where the noise violation occurred.  Failure to obey such a request to move is a violation of this section.

(2)     It shall be a separate violation of this subsection (d) for a street performer to generate any sound by any means so that the sound is louder than an average conversational level at a distance of 200 feet or more, measured either horizontally or vertically from the point of generation.  Failure to comply with these noise control limitations shall subject the violator to the penalties set forth in subsection (e) of this section.

(e)     Anyone found guilty of two violations of subsection (d)(i) of this section within one calendar year, and anyone found guilty of one violation of subsection (d)(2) of this section, shall have his or her street performer’s permit revoked by the department for a period of one calendar year.  Permit revocations shall be conducted in accordance with procedures established by the department.  In addition to permit revocation and the fine provided for in Section 4-244-170(b), a person violating subsection (d) of this section may also be required to perform up to 24 hours of community service.

(f)     All street performers are prohibited from performing in the highly congested area on both sides of Michigan Avenue, bounded by East Delaware Place on the north and East Superior Street on the south.

(g)     No performer shall, while performing on the public way (1) along that portion of Jackson Boulevard that lies between Columbus Drive and Lake Shore Drive at any time during which a concert is being performed in the Petrillo Music Shell, or (2) along that portion of Randolph Street that lies between Columbus Drive and Michigan Avenue, and along that portion of Columbus Drive that lies between Michigan Avenue and Monroe Street, at any time during which a concert is being performed in the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, emit noise that is audible to a person with normal hearing more than 20 feet away.

(h)     No performance by a performer shall be allowed at any time in Millennium Park, or on any sidewalk that abuts Millennium Park.

(Added Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 125; Amend Coun. J. 11-8-12, p. 38872, § 126)

Bookmark4-244-165  Acceptance of contributions.

A performer who performs and accepts contributions under the provisions of this chapter shall not be committing disorderly conduct under Section 8-4-010 of the Municipal Code of Chicago by virtue of those acts.

(Added Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 125)

ARTICLE IV.  ENFORCEMENT

Bookmark4-244-170  Violation – Penalty.

(a)     Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, and in addition to any other penalty provided by law, any peddler who shall be found liable or guilty of any fraud or misrepresentation, or who shall violate any of the provisions set forth in Article II of this chapter, shall be fined not less than $50.00 nor more than $200.00 for each offense.

(b)     Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, and in addition to any other penalty provided by law, any person who violates any of the provisions of Article III of this chapter, including, but not limited to, the noise control limitations set forth in subsection (d) of Section 4-244-164, or who knowingly furnishes false information on the permit application required under Section 4-244-161, shall be subject to a fine of $300.00 for the first offense and $500 thereafter for any subsequent violations.  Except as otherwise specifically provided in Article III of this chapter, any person found guilty of three or more violations of any of the provisions of Article III of this chapter within one calendar year shall have his or her street performer’s permit revoked by the department for a period of one calendar year.  Permit revocations shall be conducted in accordance with procedures established by the department.

(Added Coun. J. 12-9-92, p. 25465; Amend Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 126; Amend Coun. J. 11-8-12, p. 38872, § 127)

Bookmark4-244-175  Special events.

The mayor, by and through the commissioner of the department of cultural affairs and special events, shall have the authority to promulgate reasonable rules and regulations governing the time, place manner and duration of all performances permitted under this chapter which occur during the course of a special event, including during its set up and clean up.

Such regulations shall include establishing specified areas within, or reasonably near the perimeter of, the grounds of a special event to which performers shall be limited, and such other restrictions as are reasonably necessary to ensure attendees’ enjoyment of planned events, protection of unique public art and landscapes, and public safety and welfare.  Copies of such regulations shall be published and made available both in advance of and at the location of the special event.

(Added Coun. J. 5-9-12, p. 27485, § 127; Amend Coun. J. 11-8-12, p. 38872, § 128)

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This Code of Ordinances and/or any other documents that appear on this site may not reflect the most current legislation adopted by the Municipality. American Legal Publishing Corporation provides these documents for informational purposes only. These documents should not be relied upon as the definitive authority for local legislation. Additionally, the formatting and pagination of the posted documents varies from the formatting and pagination of the official copy. The official printed copy of a Code of Ordinances should be consulted prior to any action being taken.For further information regarding the official version of any of this Code of Ordinances or other documents posted on this site, please contact the Municipality directly or contact American Legal Publishing toll-free at 800-445-5588.© 2013 American Legal Publishing Corporation
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Categories: Chicago, Uncategorized
  1. September 25, 2014 at 4:45 pm

    Hello there, any progress on this? If you are still working on trying to improve the options for street artists and performers, I would like to help if I can!

    • September 26, 2014 at 10:42 am

      It’s an impasse and no one is working on the issue in any coherent way. There is no legal basis to change it unless you got a bunch of Aldermen on board and they took an action to change the laws, I cannot think of a way to bring about legal sale of and vending of merchandise on the street level. My Alderman is liberal / progressive and he never bothered with the issue; he never bothered to call me back. This is the old school Chicago Machine power structure we are looking at in this respect and it’s weighted in favor of the rich and connected.

    • September 26, 2014 at 10:43 am

      Also, if you look here I published further information because I spent my summer working through the only way to sell art downtown legally. It covers the social as well as the legal aspect of that action.

      https://shellielewis.wordpress.com/2013/09/08/artists-reflection-street-art-sales-and-the-peddling-laws-in-chicago/

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