Wicker Park Bus Stop Hasn’t Been ADA Accessible for Months
For the past three months, #56 Milwaukee bus drivers have had a tough time picking up passengers, especially those with disabilities, from a temporary bus stop in the heart of Wicker Park.
The bus stop was formerly located on the northwest leg of the bustling junction of Milwaukee, North, and Damen, in front of a Walgreens. In order to accommodate construction at the iconic Northwest Tower, the Chicago Transit Authority relocated the stop to the southeast leg in July.
The temporary stop is located at a corner dotted with newspaper boxes, trash bins, and signs, so instead passengers often wait within the 15-minute standing zone in front of the Bank of America branch. When cars are standing there, they block the bus from pulling all the way up to the curb. This forces those boarding the bus at this busy transit interchange to step off the curb. That isn’t an option for people in wheelchairs, and they also can’t access the nearby Damen Blue Line station because it doesn’t have an elevator.
I alerted the CTA about the situation a month ago, and reminded them earlier this week. Spokesman Brian Steele told me the agency had been working with the bank’s property managers on the issue ever since the stop was relocated.
Steele provided another update on Wednesday. “CTA and [the Chicago Department of Transportation] have spoken to the property managers for the Bank of America building, and will be removing this 15-minute standing zone, and installing bus stop signs (heavy coated signs, not just paper signs) to clearly identify the stop,” he wrote. However, he couldn’t provide an ETA for the change.