This service request allows for Chicago residents to report street surface potholes. Please include the location of the pothole when making the request.
Potholes are typically irregularly shaped pavement holes. If the problem appears to be a utility cut (usually a square cut for water or sewer repairs) or a sinkhole (usually a dip in the pavement or a void, often near a manhole or catch basin), please call 311 directly.
What is a pothole?
A pothole is formed when street surfaces freeze and thaw and crack, allowing water to seep under the pavement. As that water freezes and thaws, it causes an expansion in the surface crack, creating what we see as potholes. Potholes usually occur in a traffic lane of roadways and are normally irregular in shape and size. They also tend to be relatively shallow holes unless ignored, and the base of the street is still observable.
What is a cave-in?
Cave-ins can occur when utility services housed underneath the roadway are damaged and are usually found near a manhole or catch basin. Cave-ins, sometimes called sinkholes, can range from a slight dip in the roadway to a deep hole in the pavement that requires immediate attention.
Who fixes potholes and cave-ins?
CDOT has inspectors in neighborhoods across the city and construction crews assigned to repair potholes throughout the year. Because most potholes occur during the winter and spring, CDOT schedules crews to work every day, including weekends during ‘pothole season’.
When a cave-in or sinkhole is reported, CDOT inspectors will assess the degree of damage to the roadway and determine what caused the problem. It will then forward its assessment to the agency or utility company that needs to make the repairs. Depending on what caused the cave-in, work under the roadway might need to be completed before the road repairs are made.
Residents are asked to report potholes and cave-ins they encounter to 311.