To edit the Wiki, please login with the same username and password as WME and the forum. Visit the forum for editing guidelines and discussions.


From waze
Jump to: navigation, search

USA Illinois.png

This page serves as the primary resource for editors of Illinois. Review all the sections to better understand how the guidelines for this state might deviate from the overall USA or worldwide guidelines. If you have any comments or questions about this page or state refer to the community links below.

You are only seeing modifications of this page made up until Fri, 21 Oct 2016 14:52:41 UTC, make sure to log in to the wiki to see the latest updates.


Illinois is a part of the Great Lakes region, which includes the states and/or territories of:

Illinois / Indiana / Michigan / Ohio / Wisconsin.

Thank you for your interest in editing Waze maps in the State of Illinois. Please note Illinois follows the US national guidance with a few exceptions. Be sure to click on and read every link from this page for in-depth tips, guidance and advice.

All editors should have a real username, not a usa_username and are required to have their private messaging turned on.

Refer to the Glossary for common Waze related terms.

Tip: Editors are strongly encouraged to download & install the Waze Validator Plugin. This tool will identify map errors and offers guidance on how to fix them. Use this to identify issues in areas you are working on but make sure not to be distracted by errors that do not pertain to you.

Mapping resources


Before editing the maps in Illinois, be sure to fully review and understand the editing manual.

The Waze user community follows the Waze etiquette guidelines discussed in the Wiki. Be sure to familiarize yourself with these guiding principals while editing the maps and this Wiki, as well as when communicating with other Waze users.



The Waze forum is a great place to find answers to previously asked questions and also a place to ask new ones. Below are links to the forums specific to Illinois.

Area Managers for Illinois can be found in the table below.

New editors should consider checking into the formal mentoring program available at no charge.

Cities and towns


One of the most common errors when editing the maps is when an editor creates a road and does not confirm the road by setting the city and road name (or stating it has none).

Duplicate cities can be caused by incorrectly named segments and should be corrected following the guidelines in the duplicate cities article.

Some states and territories manage a separate page on cities and towns to identify the specific city names that should be entered, and no others. For states that do not have a separate page to track the names, see this Wikipedia link and find the state or territory in question.

Major roads

4lane road icon.png

Illinois follows the general road naming and road type guidelines of the USA.

US, State, and County Route Naming

Exceptions to the USA road naming linked to above within Illinois are:

  • In July,2013, all US Hwy XXX have been changed to US-XXX.
  • State Rte XXX is being changed to SR-XXX format.
  • CR-XXX will be used where applicable. Most have a Primary Street name, so this would only apply to an Alternate Field entry.

Road Type (Functional Classification)

Illinois follows standard USA guidance for assignment of road type assignment. It is important to remember that the interactive IDOT map used a base map that may have yellow colored roads that are not collectors. Minor collectors are bright yellow.

Road Lock Standard

Illinois follow the Great Lakes Region road locking standard with elevated locking standards in the Chicago Loop.

Minimum Road Lock Standard

Minimum Road Lock Standard
Lock Level
Segment Type Direction Illinois Loop Zone
 Freeway  5 5
 Ramp  HCS* HCS*
 Major Highway  3 3
 Minor Highway  3 3
 Primary Street  One-way 3 3
Two-way 2 3
 Private Road 
One-way 2 3
Two-way 1 2
 |-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-| Railroad |-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|  2 2
 • • • • Ferry • • • •   2 3
 ||||||||        ||||||||        ||||||||        |||||||| Runway ||||||||        ||||||||        ||||||||        ||||||||  5 5
Other Named Types 1 3
Segment Group Illinois Loop Zone
Construction Areas
(changes without aerial images)
3 3
Multi-Level Streets
(i.e. Lower Wacker)
N/A 3


HCS - Highest Connecting Segment
Chicago Loop Zone
The Chicago Loop Zone is bordered by Lake Michigan on the east, the Chicago River on the north and west and Polk on the south.

Turning Restrictions

The provisions for turning in Illinois are defined in Rules of the Road, in Illinois Compiled Statutes 625 ILCS 5/11. In this wiki section we cover two specific situations: Left turns across medians and U-Turns.

Left Turns across Medians

Left turns across paved non-curbed medians are allowed in Illinois, defined in 625 ILCS 5/11-708 (e).

The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) defines several types of medians in Bureau of Design and Environment Manual Ch. 34, Cross Section Elements:

  • Flush - A median which is adjacent to traffic lanes and on the same plane as the lanes. These are painted on the pavement surface.
  • Depressed - The median between opposing traffic lines is slightly below the elevation of the traffic lanes. It is also designed for drainage and storage of plowed snow.
  • Raised-Curb - The curb on these medians is greater than two inches in height.
  • Traversable - This type of median has a curb two inches in height.

A Two-Way Left Turn Lane (TWLTL) is typically a flush median. IDOT allows a traversable median to be used as a TWLTL in place of a flush median.


In Illinois, U-Turns can be performed unless specifically prohibited by law. Illinois statute defining the limitations on U-Turns is 625 ILCS 5/11-802 and can be reviewed in the Illinois Secretary of State Rules of Road booklet.

U-Turns can be enabled when editing by enabling the U-Turn flag or at box (#) and partial-box (H) intersections when the median segment is more than 15m in length (See Avoiding U-turns in box and partial box intersections).

When considering enabling a U-Turn, do so only if there is a strong potential to provide improved routing. Some examples of U-Turn implementations are:

  • Where driveways or parking lots are connected to a median-divided roadway and doing so would eliminate complex routing to reach the proper side of the road.
  • At both connected end-points of a single segment parking lot or gas station to provide an optimal exit route.

Before enabling a U-Turn on public streets, these conditions should be met:

  • No traffic control devices posted prohibiting the movement.
  • The movement may not be performed on a curve.
  • The movement may not be performed on a hill or incline.
  • A driver must be able to see in all directions on all roadways a at least 500 feet (153 meters).
  • The turn must be able to be completed as a single continuous movement. While not a legal requirement, is best practice for safer navigation.
  • At least 15 meters (49 feet) exist from the left edge of the legal departure lane to the right edge of the destination lane, including any median to the left of the departure lane, to allow single continuous movement.

Municipal U-Turn Ordinances

The following municipalities or counties have ordinances that vary from State law (ILCS).

Changes or additional ordinances can be submitted using Illinois U-Turn Ordinance Submission form.

Speed Limit 70.png

Speed limits

Illinois follows the general speed limit guidelines for the USA with this local guidance.

In addition to posted speed limits, Illinois has several default speed limits that are applicable in different circumstances. These are defined in Illinois Compiled Statutes 625 ILCS 5/Ch. 11 Art. VI (Speed Restrictions) with supporting information in 625 ILCS 5/Ch. 1 (Definitions). The maximum speed limits to be used are for private passenger vehicles.

The default speed limits that should be added to the Waze map in Illinois are:

  • Interstates and tollways — 70 mph.
  • Highways with four lanes, having a separation between roadways moving in opposite directions — 65 mph.
  • Other highways, roads and streets (non-urban areas) — 55 mph.
  • Other highways, roads and streets (urban districts) — 30 mph.

The counties of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, Madison, McHenry, St. Clair, and Will, may set maximum speed limits lower than the state defaults.

An urban district is "The territory contiguous to and including any street which is built up with structures devoted to business, industry or dwelling houses situated at intervals of less than 100 feet for a distance of a quarter of a mile or more." [625 ILCS 5/1-214]

Illinois default speed limits not currently applicable and not to be added to the Waze map:

  • Alleys — 15 mph.
  • School Zones — 20 mph (on school days between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. when children

are present and signs are posted).

School and park speed limits

These special zones are not added to the map. At the present time there is no way to support the time- and condition-based aspects of speed zones at schools and parks. The speed limit before entering one of these zones should be carried through, in the direction of travel, to the point the special speed zone ends.

Work zone speed limits

Mbox construction yellow.png
Work zone SL.png

A work zone (WZ) may have a lower advisory speed limit (SL) posted in black on orange Advisory Speed Plaque.png, or a regulatory speed limit posted in black on white with an orange "Work Zone" banner across the top Work zone SL.png.

We only consider the regulatory signs, and never map advisory speed limits.

  • Only add Work Zone speed limits (WZSL) if they are anticipated to persist more six months.
  • For projects expected to last less than six months:
    1. Use the regular underlying SL on affected segments.
    2. Document the WZSL as a [CONSTRUCTION] UR with the keyword WZ: mph included in the text. Also include area under construction and expected completion date.
  • For projects scheduled to continue for more than six months:
    1. Document the construction in a [CONSTRUCTION] UR, including: Area/segments involved, expected completion date, original speed limit using SL: mph, and work zone speed limit using WZ: mph (example: SL: 45 / WZ: 35).
    2. Update affected segments with posted WZSL.
  • Projects of shorter duration may be added as well, IF the editor has access to frequent status updates on the project, and is willing to monitor and adjust as soon as the SL is restored.

Where speed limits change

In Illinois, speed limit changes are mapped at the point nearest the posted speed limit sign with these considerations:

  • Changes should be mapped at or before the sign in the direction of travel..
  • Changes should be mapped at definite changes in roadway characteristics: urban boundaries, intersecting roadways, or driveways, etc.
  • Changes should not be mapped less than 200 feet from an existing junction. This can have a negative impact on turn delay calculations.

If an editor has any questions regarding the placement of a speed limit change or feels discussion is needed regarding an exception to these guidelines, please reach out to area managers.

Municipal Speed Ordinances

The following municipalities or counties have ordinances that vary from State law (ILCS).

Changes or additional ordinances can be submitted using the Illinois Speed Ordinance Submission form.

Special roads

Drivable roads

Illinois follows the standard USA guidelines for all of the following special road types.

Non-drivable roads

Review the Wiki guidelines for non-drivable roads to ensure compliance with the general guidelines.


Alleys are driveable roads that often provide access to the rear of a business or residence. They can be an important part of the map for routing purposes especially for places with rear access only and for drivers starting a route from an alley.

Guidelines for Mapping Alleys in Illinois:

Generally speaking, only residential alleys should be mapped, and only if they are the locally accepted destination for parking at or near a residence. Alleys should only function as a starting point or final destination, not as a thoroughfare.

In the city of Chicago and the suburbs, do not delete already mapped alleys. Outside the Chicagoland area, alleys may be deleted if they are not necessary for proper routing.

If an alley is to be mapped or updated, be sure to nudge the house numbers.

Road type should be set to  Parking Lot Road  and should be named "Alley".


When managing a section of roadway under construction or being closed for a major event, follow the Wiki guidelines on construction zones and Real time closures.

Road Construction


Illinois follows the USA standard for Places. Do not deviate from the guidelines without first obtaining consensus to do so via the state forum linked on this page.

See Illinois/Places for guidance in Illinois that may not be universal to all other states and territories.


Not every camera-looking device at an intersection is a speed or red light camera. Generally speaking:

  • Camera2true.png
    Rlc truvelo speed cam.jpeg
    a speed camera takes a photograph of a vehicle when it passes by the camera at too high a speed.
  • Camera4true.png
    Rlc white.jpeg
    a red light camera takes a photograph of a vehicle that enters an intersection after the light is red. In some areas, it takes the photograph when a vehicle is not clear of the intersection some period after the light turns red.

Be sure to know your cameras before accepting new camera reports.

When adding a camera, be sure to review the camera placement recommendations.

Laws regarding speed and red light cameras vary between the states and territories, so be sure to understand the details of camera legality in Illinois.

Based on information researched at the time this page was created, the limited legality of speed cameras in Illinois is described below, and red light cameras are legal statewide in Illinois.

No other camera types should be mapped in Waze.

  • Mobile speed cameras may be in use in construction zones statewide; these cameras should not be mapped.
  • Municipalities with a population of 1,000,000 or more may use speed cameras in safety zones (one-eighth mile from school or park). The City of Chicago is currently the only Illinois community to qualify for speed camera placement.

To do list

To do list.png

Many states and territories keep an active list of pending or closed actions that need to be done in the state by the editors. All editors are welcome to contribute to the list of activities.

Want to help out with the map in Illinois? Check out the To Do list for the state.

Area Managers

The table below identifies the editors also designated as Area Managers or higher who are editing in Illinois. If you have any questions, please consider contacting them directly as needed. If you are an Area Manager that covers Illinois, or a USA Country Manager that does a lot of work in Illinois, please add yourself to this list (alphabetical by username) in the correct rank section.

The editor who also serves as the Regional Coordinator for Illinois is automatically listed at the top of the table. That editor may not be highly active in this state and therefore may not be listed separately in the table.

Large Area Managers (LAM) help manage large sections of the state working with the local Area Managers. You can also reach out to them for assistance. A map of the areas they coordinate is below.

Interested in becoming an Illinois Area Manager or think you qualify for a promotion? Talk to a State Manager. Then, fill out an area manager application, and speak to a Regional Coordinator.

Illinois — Area, State and Country Managers
Regional Coordinator(s): [RC] GizmoGuy411 (PM) and [ARC] TerryPurdue (PM)
  GHO Display Name
Area Managed Comments
Country Managers (Great Lakes region)
(Add to or edit Country and State sections of table)
TerryPurdue(6) [PM] Profile L6.png
Countrywide Badge LocalChamp.pngBadge Mentor Local Champ.pngBadge CountryManager.pngBadge StateManager.png
Local Champ-US
State Manager-OH
ArlenBystander(5) [PM] Profile L5.png Countrywide Badge CountryManager.pngBadge Mentor.png
roadtechie(5) [PM] Profile L5.png
Countrywide Badge CountryManager.pngBadge StateManager.pngBadge Mentor.png
State Managers (Great Lakes region)
Bigbear3764(5) [PM] Profile L5.png
Avatar bigbear3764.jpg
Countrywide Badge CountryManager.pngBadge StateManager.pngBadge Mentor.png
hawkeygoal(4) [PM] Profile L4.png
Avatar hawkeygoal.png
Statewide Badge StateManager.pngBadge Mentor.png
Area Managers
(Add to or edit this section)
jdeyoung(6) [PM] Profile L6.png Northeastern Illinois Badge StateManager.pngBadge AreaManager.png
ehepner1977(4) [PM] Profile L4.png
Large Area Manager (D5),
Central and South Central IL
Badge AreaManager.png
mike0723(4) [PM] Profile L4.png West Chicago Suburbs Badge AreaManager.png
ruggles76(4) [PM] Profile L4.png
Large Area Manager (D1) Badge AreaManager.png
abright52(3) [PM] Profile L3.png McDonough County Badge AreaManager.png
krikketdoug(3) [PM] Profile L3.png O'Hare Int'l Airport Badge AreaManager.png
lon7171(3) [PM] Profile L3.png Peoria Badge AreaManager.png
rickzabel(3) [PM] Profile L3.png Northeast Illinois Badge AreaManager.png
traffic-adl(3) [PM] Profile L3.png Chicago and Joliet Badge AreaManager.png

Other states and territories

USA CommonState.png
The other states and territories of the USA can be found in the navigation box below. Press the "show" button to open the box.

About this page