Today’s Headlines

  • Speed Cams Bring Less Revenue Than Expected, Which Is a Good Thing (Sun-Times)
  • Neighbors Angry About Land by ‘L’ Stop Being Turned Into Restaurant Parking Lot (DNA)
  • Details on Bloomingdale Bridge Reconstruction at Milwaukee (DNA)
  • $3 Million TIF Deal for Wilson Station Rehab Reaffirmed (DNA)
  • Is a Good Idea for Illinois to Give More Transit Authority to the Governor? (Next City)
  • City to Increase Street Resurfacing by One-Third in Response to Pothole Plague (Tribune)
  • Taxi Driver Runs Red, Seriously Injures Senior (Tribune)
  • Wrong-Way Driver on Skyway Causes Diesel Spill, Lane Shutdown (Tribune)
  • DUI “Strike Force” Scheduled for Near South Side This Weekend (DNA)
  • Cop Who Badly Injured Cyclist in Hit-and-Run DUI Gets Slap on Wrist (DNA)
  • The Solution to Wrigley’s Car Traffic Nightmare? A Crackdown on Bicyclists (DNA)
  • Heavy January Snowfall Has Chilling Effect on CTA Budget (RedEye)

Get national headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • I see that, too. The speed cameras’ effect, based on studies of the systems in other cities and countries, remains the same regardless of the “take”: people drive slower, and fewer crashes and injuries occur.

  • BlueFairlane

    I think bicyclists taking it upon themselves to correct other people makes bicyclists look bad. This can be an extremely bossy, self-righteous group of people.

  • Fred

    Bicyclists correcting other bicyclists makes bicyclists look bad to whom?

  • BlueFairlane

    Anybody who hates Lucy Van Pelt.

  • alexfrancisburchard

    Well, I disagree. I think a citywide task force of cycle patrols would be amazing.

  • Fred

    So you’re saying that if you are a driver who hates bikers who run stop signs, if you were to see a biker saying to another biker “hey, don’t run through stop signs!” it would make you hate bikers more?

  • BlueFairlane

    I’m saying that I wouldn’t notice what any biker did other than the one who ran the stop sign. And more than likely if I’m that driver, it doesn’t matter whether the biker ran the stop sign or not, as I have already developed a hatred of bicyclists. Meanwhile, the bicyclists you just mommed just may be pissed enough to come back and confront you about your know-it-all attitude.

    Your attitude doesn’t make the world a better place. Just more annoying.

  • alexfrancisburchard

    I think one look at my hometown – Seattle/King County, WA says that’s not the best plan. KC Metro is countywide. Seattle holds 630,000 people (maybe 640 by now, I dunno its growing hella fast). King County as a whole has 2 million people, (meaning nonSeattle has 1.37 million). Metro until very recently had this rule that 40% of new service had to go to south burbs, 40 to the east burbs, and only 20% to the city of Seattle. Seattle has twice the population density of its suburbs, and 37% of the populace. So obviously Seattle was getting hugely shafted, but because MEtro is a single agency, the suburbs (with their 2/3 majority) outvote the city, end of story.

    Fortunately Metro has done away with that policy, but that’s what can happen with single superagencies. Not the greatest plan.

    Or we get Sound Transit(tri-county), which has to build its rail system with each subarea(North, Seattle, East and South) getting money raised in it spent in it. Which doesn’t necessarily make sense from a transit planning perspective. East King County has as many people as Seattle, but it does not have the urban train needs that Seattle has. Likewise, Chicago obviously needs CTA Rail, Schaumburg? Not really. At least, not before somewhere like 130th red line extension, or Ford City Orange, etc..

  • Ryan Wallace

    As someone you was actually at the meeting, EVERYONE is putting far too much weight behind the Commander’s statements about the cyclists. Stop. Think about who he is speaking to: a group of very ornery neighbors who have made a huge stink about recent crime. The entire time he was speaking he was trying to placate them. The comment about “making sure they are following the bike rules” was mostly just an aside to gain favor with the crowd, and not something I took with any seriousness (I almost laughed). He could barely figure out how to put together the words “bike rules”. Meanwhile he hammered issues like robbery, burglary, public drunkenness and others with sincere vigor.

  • ReverseCommuter

    I agree no arbitrary formula like you say Seattle had should be applied. My broader point is that we have to stop thinking about this in terms of “the city” vs “the suburbs”. That’s poison to creating a regional network.

    I think a person in Palatine trying to get to a job in Wheeling deserves as much access to work via transit as does a person in Roseland trying to get to the Loop. I’m not talking about building a new train line, I’m talking about finding ways to provide efficient and affordable service to people who need and want it all across the region.

  • alexfrancisburchard

    I agree that that’s a good goal, but where it falls apart is that, the person in palatine chose to live somewhere based on cars. they don’t deserve the same 10 minute transit service someone who lives on Belmont&Broadway does.

    But the reality of trying to pay for the person in palatine to have good transit, means that places that have it now and depend on transit will be defunded to pay for it in nowhere land, where fewer people will use it anyways, even if it IS good service.

    There is a finite pool of money, and the current distribution of it among city and suburbs is barely cutting it for the city. Giving suburban interests more vote over that money ensures the dismantling of the urban transit system.

    The various agencies need to be better at coordination, merging them is not the answer to that.

  • Lisa Curcio

    In any criminal case the burden of proof is NEVER on the defense. It is ALWAYS on the prosecution.

  • Matt F

    I’m not a lawyer. so….. .thank you :)

  • Lisa Curcio

    You are welcome. Let me stay up here on my soap box for a second and say that the “presumption of innocence” has been held to be a fundamental right flowing from the common law and the U.S. Constitution and every citizen should be aware of it, regardless of legal training. Thank you. I am getting down now.

  • ReverseCommuter

    I’m definitely not advocating for decreasing funding for anywhere in the region. Expanding funding is as critical as governance reform. But an attitude like yours ignores the reality of where people and employers are locating.

    That’s not to we shouldn’t look at land use and encourage more density and reevaluate what type of jobs we’re helping create. But that stuff happens much, much slower than reorienting suburban transit service.

  • Wewilliewinkleman

    “The person in Palatine chose to live somewhere based on cars…don’t deserve…” Hmmmm. Do you know how many people who live in Palatine actually made their residential decision based on their car ownership?

    This is such a gross and ugly attitude. Maybe people live in Palatine because they are working families where one parent may work downtown and another parent in another suburb. Do they have children or elders they have to take care of? Are the schools better options for their children (maybe they don’t have money for a private school). Maybe the cost of the home was more affordable, with enough bedrooms for their children was a consideration. Not everyone can fit their whole family into a studio or one bedroom apartment at Belmont & Broadway.

    Who are you to determine what people deserve or don’t deserve?

    People make the decision where they live mainly by what they can afford. And the city can be a pricey place to live, especially if you have children.

  • Jim Mitchell

    Assuming there are sufficient staffing resources on the CPD force to do it, then yes, I agree cycle patrols would be more effective, more efficient, and safer at pulling over cyclists than are cops in squad cars. At least that is my intuition.

  • ohsweetnothing

    He didn’t say people that live in Palatine made the decision based on their car ownership. He said they chose to “live somewhere based on cars”…which is a different statement that just so happens to not fit your rant so well.
    It’s not about punishing people because of where they live. It’s about how are we going to spend x transit dollars in the most efficient manner possible.

  • ohsweetnothing

    Guess that makes them more like their patrol car bound brethren than I gave them credit for, haha.

  • alexfrancisburchard

    Pace is best suited to reorient suburban transit, CTA is not. You just argued for keeping them separate.

  • alexfrancisburchard

    That’s part of the decision to live in palatine though. When they bought the house, they knew it didn’t come with a bus ride to work.

    When the person in Lakeview bought the house, or rented the apartment, they knew full well it came with a bus or a train ride to work.

  • ReverseCommuter

    Hardly. Pace’s primary mission and expertise is providing paratransit service. Their fixed route service is a small fraction of their budget. There’s good people there, and they try, but they don’t succeed in proving broadly usable suburban transit service.

  • alexfrancisburchard

    I still fail to see how combining the agencies will do anything to improve things for the suburbs in any way except that they would now have a greater funding pool to draw from (at the expense of the city).

  • ReverseCommuter

    The point is that the stark city/suburb dichotomy doesn’t make much sense. Consider that half of Chicagoans drive to work alone. Where do you think that they’re going?

    The problem with the current system is that the different boards are dominated by appointees of elected officials accountable only to a single group of voters. But not only city dwellers use the CTA and suburbanites aren’t the only ones riding Metra and Pace.

    A unified system and a broader funding pool could provide the will and the resources that reflect the reality of the region’s transportation needs.

  • alexfrancisburchard

    You need to just openly admit that what you want is for the pace district to be able to pillage CTA’s already very limited funding.

  • ReverseCommuter

    That’s not at all what I said or what I want.

  • Wewilliewinkleman

    But maybe the Palatine family thought about Metra, which you haven’t mentioned. Metra needs dollars too, and I never commented about expanded bus services in the suburbs. However for reverse commuters it would be great to team with large suburban employers about running bus service from suburban Metra stations to their complexes.

    Seems like you’re are stuck in the anti-car mode, which doesn’t make for expansive ideas.