CHICAGO - There were huge lines Tuesday as the City of Chicago opened up a new testing center for COVID-19.
The pop-up site is near Midway Airport in a part of the city that is being ravaged by the pandemic.
With jet planes thundering overhead, hundreds of people waited for hours as the city’s newest COVID testing facility opened at noon.
The line of cars stretched more than a half-mile at times, with many taking the day off work to wait.
“I’m ready. I got a couple audiobooks here, some podcast. I came prepared to spend a couple hours here,” said Martin Corral.
The new mobile testing site is in a city-owned parking lot a block west of Midway, in the heart of one of Chicago’s hardest hit areas.
“The fact is this part of the city is experiencing upwards of 30% positivity rates. We needed a static testing site in this area of the city and I’m glad we are able to get one here,” said Alderman Michael Rodriguez.
While most people who were in line said they don’t feel sick, they want to be sure especially with the holidays coming.
The city says about 26 percent of the people coming to these sites are testing positive. But with such heavy demand, they’re asking that people who have insurance or access to medical care use their doctors instead.
“We really are trying to target and prioritize the capacity of our sites for those who don’t have insurance or don’t have another means to get tested,” said Tina Anderson, Chicago Department of Public Health deputy commissioner.
The testing site near Midway will be open again Thursday from noon to six and on Saturday from 10 to 4.