CDOT Developing Divvy Relocation Procedures

Ronnie Harris
Ronnie Harris talks about Go Bronzeville. Photo: Justin Haugens.

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.”

  • Brian Chang

    If I’m reading this correctly, zero bikes have been permanently lost/stolen? That’s great.

  • Essentially, yes, but the Divvy bike ridden by a member who was crashed into by an IDOT worker driving a work truck was “demolished”.

  • Scott Sanderson

    I hope IDOT will not insist on excessively long turn lanes for every street on Clybourn. Some of those turn lanes have room for 8 cars, are rarely used, and I’ve never seen one full even though I ride on that street every day. It seems unnecessary to crowd out the bike lane for these things every time there is a cross street.

  • I’m skeptical that a bike lane will be added to the short portion of Clybourn between North and Halsted because it’s (sort of) part of a six-way intersection and the middle parts are made wide so that more cars can be accommodated without having a trail of them backing up from the middle part into the parts on the other side of the intersection (and in the intersection) before the ahead light changes green.

    Wow, describing traffic situations is really difficult.

  • Jin Nam

    I was super bummed when they moved the Divvy station from Monroe near Halsted which was located right across the street from the grocery store Mariano’s to Madison and Halsted. It was on Monroe so briefly I had to confer with my friend whether we were both imagining having seen it there. I’m finding I am getting lazier and lazier from years of utility riding, i.e. the idea of walking (egads!) a block instead of riding right to the door is such a drag. Hahaha!!

  • Anonymous

    Off all the new work being done, only a scant 3 miles of re-stripping was reported by Nathan Roseberry at the meeting. Focusing on new lanes and work gets attention and press attention but ignoring the lanes that are disappearing is doing a lot to offset the gain.

    In particular, Lawrence Avenue – between Western and Milwaukee is badly in need of re-stripping. I did talk with Nathan about this, and he said “it was in the schedule.”

  • Disappearing bike lanes is an unfortunate aspect of the bikeway network that CDOT has failed to adequately address in a decade. It relies on resurfacing projects and aldermen willing to didn’t their discretionary funds to restripe bikeways.

    I agree that out bikeway mileage statistics are severely overstated because of this problem.

  • I find walking awkward myself sometimes. The only kind of walking I’m used to is *with* my bike.

  • Anonymous

    That is a question I can’t seem to find an answer to.

    Is re-stripping financed by the city and/or the Chicago Dept. of Transportation, or is re-stripping financed by the alderman and menu money?

    If a road is re-surfaced must the cost of resurfacing include the cost of re-stripping, either by the CDOT or IDOT?

    Is this a case of everybody wants something done, but wants somebody else to pay for it?

  • Anonymous

    I like the part with the zero bikes being permanently stolen. When I was living in NYC , I have my 28”er MTB stolen. That was a disaster for me given that I did not have the Velosurance Bicycle Insurance policy yet.

  • Side note…

    I attended and during the questions and comments section I inquired about the Sheridan Road sidewalk bike ordinance that Harry Osterman in the 48th ward has sponsored. From what I read, the ordinance would stiffen the fine for sidewalk biking and be higher than what the city imposes elsewhere.

    Luann Hamilton instantly pressed her thoughts and knowledge only to be proven wrong when I returned home to verify. The fine Osterman is seeking is $250 while the maximum fine for a bicycle violation is listed as $200 under Rahm’s ordinance.

    At the time, I didn’t have the firm knowledge to respond more aggressively. She also mentioned that Harry Osterman’s desire is to improve signage to direct bikers to Winthrop or Kenmore since those are designated as routes.

    Here’s the problem, THEY HAVE SPEED BUMPS. I don’t know about anybody else but this is incredibly inefficient and can be damaging to wheels over time. I am very frustrated by her lack of knowledge regarding this as it pertains directly to what the individuals at the table are responsible for.


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