Forms & Resources
How do I apply for an assignment in the harbors?
In order to obtain any type of mooring in the Chicago Harbors, a completed application with a deposit of $15.00 per foot of the size of the boat that will be moored must be submitted to our office.
How do I get an Application, Transfer Form, Change Form or other official paperwork?
Contact us at (312) 742-8520 and we would be more than happy to send the requested material via: mail, fax or e-mail. You can also obtain official paperwork at your individual harbor or on this website under Applications. Please note that all paperwork must be submitted to the main office, not to your harbor manager.
Is there a waiting list?
Yes, there are two lists that are used for the assignment process. The waiting list consists of applicants that do not already have a mooring of any type in our system and the transfer list which consists of individuals who have a buoy, stardock or slip and are waiting to be transferred to another location.
How long is the waiting list?
The waiting list increases with each person that applies for entry into our system and varies in length depending on the time of year. In December 2010, there were over 540 people on the New Applicants List and 570 on the Transfer List.
I have been on the waiting list for a slip, why is it taking so long to get one?
It is impossible to predict how long the wait time will be to obtain a slip. According to the code of the Chicago Park District governing the use of the harbors, those individuals who are on the transfer list will receive priority of available slips before those who are on the waiting list. Therefore, we highly recommend that you accept the first available assignment and then apply for a transfer to the assignment you want. This may mean that an applicant first accept a mooring can and then put in a transfer to a slip.
I have been waiting for a slip but know people who applied after me getting slips?
We first assign all available transfers and only then do we assign the remaining spaces from the waiting list. It is quite possible for someone who applied after you to accept an available mooring can or an available slip in another harbor and then put in a transfer to a higher demand location. As a current permittee, they would then have preference over all new applicants. This is especially true if your application is for high demand harbors such as DuSable, Belmont, Diversey or Burnham or if you are a larger boat. Again, that is why we highly recommend that you accept the first available assignment and then apply for a transfer to the assignment you want.
When do you make assignments?
Our assignment process begins in mid March. According to the Chicago Park District Code governing the use of the harbors, we first assign transfers and then we begin our assignments from the waiting list. We periodically continue assignments and transfers through the summer depending on availability
Do you pro-rate if I get transferred later during the summer?
If you are transferred to a higher priced mooring, you will be invoiced for the full difference in price between your current and new mooring. If you do not want to be transferred immediately, when filling out the transfer form, please select the year for which you want the transfer or specify in the comments that you do not want a mid-season transfer.
What determines availability in the harbors?
We mail our invoices by December 15th of every year to those who have any type of assignment in our system. Our customers have until February 28th to make payment for the upcoming season. Those individuals who have not returned payment by that date forfeit their assignment and we then reassign that location.
If I purchase a boat from an individual who has an assignment in our system, can I assume ownership of their assignment as well?
No – This is a violation of the code of the Chicago Park District. Only the original permittee is entitled to that location.
I was added on as a partner. Who is entitled to the assignment?
The individual(s) who were on the original mooring application are entitled to the use of the assignment. Other parties may be added so long as the ownership does not change more than 50% from the original. Please refer to the Rules and Regulations.
When does the season begin/end?
The official boating season is from May 1st until October 31st.
I am going out of town. Can my friend just put his/her boat in my slip/mooring/star dock until I come back?
Mooring assignments are not transferable. The harbor manager may allow your friend to moor his/her boat provided that the location is not given to a transient boater and your friend must pay all transient fees.
Can I keep my wave runner, jet ski or raft in my slip?
Yes, provided that they will fit into your slip and we have issued an auxiliary permit. We will determine what can or will be allowed in your slip. You will be required to submit proof of ownership and registration. If you do not obtain an auxiliary permit, you will be subject to harbor fines based on your violation. You cannot use or place a wave runner in the harbor to get to/from your mooring or stardock.
I have received a violation. Who can I contact about this?
If you have received a violation, contact your harbor manager to discuss the violation and payment of the fine.
I am interested in buying a bigger boat. What do I do about my assignment?
If you are already assigned to a slip, you are allowed 2 feet of overhang into the fairway. If your new boat is more than 2 feet longer than your slip, you must apply for a transfer to a larger slip. If you have a mooring and your boat size is larger than the mooring in any way, you must apply for a transfer to a larger mooring. If you do not apply for a transfer then we will automatically move you to a different location. If you outsize yourself we are not required to move you to a slip or to move you to a location in your current harbor. We are required to find “space”, if available, for you somewhere in the harbor system. You also may be subject to an outsize fee. We do not allow for overhangs for new applicants or transfers.
I have a buoy/stardock assignment. How do I get out to my boat?
If you are moored in Monroe Harbor, the tender service will bring you to and from your boat. If you are moored in our other harbors, you will be required to obtain your own dinghy for this purpose.
I have sold my boat, can I get a refund?
You can get a full refund of your mooring fees until March 1st. After that you can get an eighty percent refund until May 1st and a half-refund of your mooring fees until July 1st. Parking cards are not refundable. There are no refunds after July 1st. To get a refund, you need to submit a request for the refund in writing or by email to the Chicago Harbors main office. Note that if you get a refund, any transfers on file will be cancelled and if you wish to renew, you must submit a new application.