Today’s Headlines for Tuesday, October 5

  • Reilly Announces That Construction Is Resuming on Long-Delayed Navy Pier Flyover (DNA)
  • Editorial: Thanks to Feds & State Stiffing Metra, Riders Will Pay More, Get Less Service (Sun-Times)
  • Driver Broke Cyclist Trajan Vivens’ Jaw With a Drum During Racially Charged Altercation (DNA)
  • (Warning: Graphic Photo) Crowdfunding Page Launched to Cover Vivens’ Medical Expenses
  • Man Charged With Battery After Attacking Woman on Austin Ave. Blue Line Platform (Tribune)
  • Police: Man Who Pushed Stranger Onto Blue Line Tracks Has Been Caught & Charged (DNA)
  • CTA 31st Street Bus Pilot Will Run at Least Until March (Gazette)
  • RTA: Extending Devon Bus to Edgebrook Unlikely Due to “Low-Density” Environment (DNA)
  • Jackson Park Watch Looks to Expand Its Influence on Obama Center Planning (Curbed)
  • 33-Unit TOD Cleared for Lots at Sheridan and Agatite, Near Wilson Station (Curbed)
  • Hit-and-Run Driver Knocks Over Light Pole in Front of Wicker Park’s Robey Hotel (DNA)

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  • Carter O’Brien

    The Navy Pier Flyover is most certainly not behind schedule. It was always slated to be completed in 2018, and this has been clearly communicated at, even if updates have not been as forthcoming as we’d all prefer in an ideal world.

    I continue to be at a loss as to why so many in Chicago’s bike community are looking this gift horse in the mouth. This is the most substantial infrastructure improvement CDOT has *ever* made for the Lakefront Trail. This will absolutely reduce the serious collisions with motor vehicles that have been a problem at Grand Avenue due to the blind spot with Lake Point Tower, as well as provide an attractive high visibility route that will encourage new people to commute downtown by bicycle.

    I give CDOT grief where it’s due, but this is not one of those times. This is one of those projects that actually makes me proud to be a Chicagoan.

  • Jacob Wilson

    It’s not so much CDOT many are expressing frustration with but the fact that non-auto oriented projects have to play silly games to get funded which is why the timeline is so long.

    The flyover (or reconfiguration of the LSD bridge which has 12!! lanes of auto traffic + ramps) and separation should have been done decades ago but we had to wait for a billionaire handout and a 4 year long schedule for something that would be done in months if it were a highway project.

    It’s not a gift when something is built using the taxes you pay and cyclists have the right to demand it be done efficiently just like motorists would. Imagine if the I55 ramps took 4 years and traffic was detoured onto local streets! lol

  • johnaustingreenfield

    The flyover is “long-delayed” in a couple of senses.

    “We at the city have discussed this, we have debated it, we have *deferred it for decades*, and now it’s time to build it,” Emanuel said at the 2014 groundbreaking.

    It also appears that the project is no longer on schedule for the planned 2018 completion — look for an update later today.

  • Carter O’Brien

    I think my point is that while we can say these projects should have been done years ago, the fact is they weren’t. So now that we are actually, finally, moving the needle, let’s be sure we acknowledge the heavy lifting that is happening behind the scenes to make these projects happen.

    The vast majority of people driving on LSD do not see this as a worthwhile investment, and they vote.

    I also hear you on the efficiency issue, but there is a difference between budgets and funding cycles and worker efficiency. If you start slamming this project as inefficient, who do you think is going to feel the burn? The engineers and guys actually building the flyway, not a budget director who is physically far removed from the project.

    btw, there is a reason they say we have two seasons in Chicago, “winter and construction.” Ask your average motorist if they think road repair is done efficiently and they will bite your head off, pointing out that CDOT doesn’t generally work at night, that CDOT fixes roads only to see utility companies come and tear them up do to a lack of coordination, etc. I am sure CDOT would argue night shifts cost more and are detrimental to morale, and that people want steady access and so they waste a lot of time setting up traffic controls to protect the workers and equipment. We are the City that Works, but that comes with the challenge of also not wanting to be the City that Shuts Down.

  • Carter O’Brien

    Well, a delay would be a bummer. But given that this is a few decades too late for me personally, at this point I am just glad to see that the next and future generations will have it.

  • planetshwoop

    The extension of the Devon bus east of Kedzie is kind of an interesting idea. On the face of it, there is no reason to do so. The “gap” in coverage has frequent service 1/2 mile south on Peterson, which eventually joins to Devon in Edgebrook. And Edgebrook (and Sauganash) are decently served by Metra, for some commuting.

    So I wonder what drove the request? In theory bus service would be great (as would extending the pulaski bus #53 further north) but there are limited resources.

  • Cameron Puetz

    I’d assume the goal of extending the Devon bus would be to link the residential areas west of the river to the vibrant commercial corridor along Devon east of the river.

  • Jared Kachelmeyer

    Possibly, although I’m not sure how much demand there is for a bus where everyone owns a car.

  • planetshwoop

    Along Cicero there are A LOT of apartments (and maybe everyone owns a car there too, but the density is a lot more than the SFHs in the area).

    It just seems like a weird request bc the Peterson bus does connect to Devon at the terminus. Besides the church, there isn’t a lot of “stuff” along the route that would make a bus relevant.

    A DNA info article mentioned an Elston bus. Given the bus barn, retailers, and employers along the route, this seems like a more interestesting possibility.