Today’s Headlines

  • Ventra Cards Go On Sale at Stations and Retail Outlets Today (Tribune, Sun-Times, CBS)
  • Wrong-Way Driver on Eisenhower Who Killed 2 Women charged With DUI (Sun-Times)
  • Pickup Driver Strikes 2 Cars, Killing 1 and Injuring 3, Flees Scene in Humboldt Park (DNA)
  • Motorcyclist Fatally Injured After Striking another Biker in South Deering (DNA)
  • Preckwinkle Speaks Out Against Illiana Expressway (Transitized)
  • Emanuel Taps Ex-Alderman Oberman, a Bike Commuter, for Metra Board (Tribune, Sun-Times)
  • Man Who Applied to Be DuPage Board Member Was Ignored By County Chairman (Tribune)
  • CTA Working to Solve Ventra Glitch at Auxiliary Station Entries (RedEye)
  • 111th Street Bus Service Stops Short of New Pullman Wallmart (DNA)
  • MPC holds roundtable on bus rapid transit Wednesday (MPC)
  • Steinberg Finally Take His Maiden Voyage on Divvy (Sun-Times)

Get national headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • The Steinberg-rides-Divvy story continues online, but they didn’t provide a link. Here it is: http://voices.suntimes.com/news/the-divvy-diaries-volume-1-making-the-thing-work/

  • Katja

    Thanks for the link; the rest of the story really helps.

    Does he know that you don’t have to put your fob in when you dock your bike? It seems like he doesn’t know that. Regardless, maybe he’s caught the Divvy bug.

  • Re: Metra appointee: “while he doesn’t have an extensive background in transportation”

    Just what we need… Oh, and he’s an “avid” cyclist!

  • Maybe he’ll read our posts about bike access on Metra and decide to push the Metra CEO and staff to do something about it:

    http://chi.streetsblog.org/2013/04/19/bike-access-on-metra-two-steps-forward-one-step-back/

    http://gridchicago.com/2012/metras-inconsistency-makes-me-want-to-drive-am-i-the-only-one/

  • That would be nice. Metra’s bike policy is all over. I always get nervous that I’ll forget there’s a Cubs game or something and get booted off the train or denied boarding with a bike. That’s an issue.

  • Re Ventra: we are long-time Chicago Card Plus holders, and our household Ventras arrived in the mail … today. It proved impossible to register them using only the website — we could do the data-entry there and then had to call the phone number (getting a long and very intrusive sales pitch for the debit-card function).

    Oh, and no sign of any way to transfer our pre-existing Chicago Card balances; the documentation says it transfers ‘automatically on activation,’ but that’s not the case. There’s also no sign that our billing info (set up to auto-fill when hitting a set low balance point) has transferred, and we’re not sure yet how to re-set it up in the new system.

    Incredibly disappointing; we are enthusiasts and early-adopters, we should’ve had them in our hands since early August to be experienced users who know from tap cards to help them troubleshoot the system. Instead they’re confusing and pissing us off royally, late in the same day everyone else in the city could get one out of a machine.

  • Anna Schibrowsky

    We are long-time Chicago Card Plus holders, and our household Ventras have not yet arrived. After reading about your troubles, I’m no longer eager to get them :(

  • I was going to the stop at Ravinia in Highland Park and I was afraid, based on the number of people waiting at Ravenswood with their Igloos and strollers that I would not get access to the bike space.

    Every conductor told me to move on to the next car and I kept running with my bike on the narrow (under construction) platform and found a spot that only had 1 bike in it.

  • Anonymous

    At least you have received yours. No sign of ours yet.

    On the upside, by November RTA will be changing the way they distribute transit benefits to employees, forced to do so by the introduction of Ventra. In the past I had to choose between a CTA magnetic card or a Metra check ( to be exhcanged for tickets at a ticket counter). Since I use both occasionally, I ended up taking no advantage at all.

    It will be replaced by a transit specific debit card that will be re-loaded every month, and will give me the freedom to use it as a touch-less card on the CTA (it can supposedly be pre-loaded with monthly products), as well as buy Metra tickets.
    It’s too soon to tell, but I may end up not needing the Ventra card at all.

    Welcome to the 21st Century, RTA!