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CDOT Developing Divvy Relocation Procedures

Ronnie Harris

Divvy bike-share continues to expand, Assistant Transportation Commissioner Sean Wiedel said at the Mayor's Bicycle Advisory Council on Wednesday, and should reach 300 stations by the end of September. As of today there are 222 stations. Wiedel reported that over 7,700 annual members and numerous 24-hour pass users have made almost 325,000 trips and pedaled almost 950,000 miles since June 28.

"Two-thirds of trips were by 24-hour pass holders," he said, a lower share than the first month, when 24-hour pass holders were taking three-fourths of the trips.

CDOT is working on adjusting the locations of a few Divvy stations. "We have a list of 15 [requests] or so, 20 at the most, that we relocate, shift them slightly, or move them around in some other way," Weidel said. CDOT is cataloging concerns and creating a process to evaluate the requests.

Active Transportation Alliance campaigns manager Lee Crandell asked if the public would have input before any stations are relocated. The answer was basically yes, with Wiedel saying that CDOT is still developing the process. He added that, "for residents who want it relocated, there's probably an equal number of people who use it and would like it to stay." So far, though, CDOT has only heard from people who want a station moved.

Wiedel also mentioned that there has been only a handful of crashes involving Divvy members, one of which caused an injury, which Streetsblog reported yesterday. In addition, he said, two bikes that "disappeared" were recovered; there have been about 10 incidents in which members left a bike at a regular bike rack; and a couple of touch screens have been damaged.

Transportation marketing

At the September 2012 MBAC meeting, CDOT said it would start a transportation demand management program this year in up to three communities to encourage people to reduce their car usage and take transit, bike, or walk. The first community is Bronzeville, in a marketing program called "Go Bronzeville!" operated by Active Transportation Alliance. Wiedel said the city's TDM program would expand to five communities in the next four years but that CDOT hadn't picked the next four communities. Commissioner Gabe Klein added that they would soon issue an RFP.

Maggie Mellin of Active Trans said that Bronzeville was selected "because the organizations and community leaders have shown a great interest in getting people out and about." (Last year, for example, Third Ward Alderman Pat Dowell went on a trip to Copenhagen with Gabe Klein, sponsored by Bikes Belong.) Go Bronzeville has three goals: get people out of their cars, expose them to other forms of transportation, and promote community organizations and businesses in the neighborhood.

Ronnie Harris, a neighborhood-based staffer for Go Bronzeville, said "one of the greatest hurdles in introducing Bronzeville to bikes is wrestling with global perspectives on what it means to ride a bike and use transit." The group would like to "shake form and fashion," he said, and present a new perspective about using non-automotive transportation. He pointed out that any resident who signs up with Go Bronzeville to receive information, resources, and support on how to get around town without a car would get a free 24-hour Divvy pass. There are approximately 12 Divvy stations in Bronzeville.

Bikeway updates and bike parking corrals

Nate Roseberry, a CDOT bikeway engineer, described many of the upcoming and under construction bike lanes, including:

The new bike lane on Clybourn Avenue was not installed between Division Street and North Avenue, said Roseberry, because CDOT is still negotiating a "mutually agreeable design" according with the Illinois Department of Transportation, which has jurisdiction over the road and is preventing CDOT from building protected bike lanes.

Tony Giron, the city's bike parking manager, reported that 11 new on-street bike parking corrals have been installed, in Logan Square, Andersonville, Edgewater, Pilsen, and West Town. This brings the city's total to 15 and Giron added that 15 more are "in the works."

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