Today’s Headlines for Friday, January 26

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  • F. Hayek 69

    Because metra and the CTA would rather compete than coordinate, the red line extension will waste billions and billions of tax payer money.

  • Chicagoan

    Wisconsin’s new advertising campaign is kind of funny, honestly. One of my favorite parts of living in Chicago is that I don’t own a car and I never find myself in need of one. Perhaps Wisconsin’s commutes are shorter, but they all include car usage and that’s not appealing to me. I enjoy my commute on the L from Uptown to the Loop. I can listen to music, read a book, read the newspaper, or an underrated option, I can just sit there and enjoy some peace of mind. It just seems that the firm they selected to create the campaign failed horribly in their research. We have a lakefront as well and it’s far more pleasant than the ones in Madison or Milwaukee, where millennials are likely to move. Those two cities both have their merits, but each fails to compare to Chicago in terms of the traits I seek in a city.

  • Jeremy

    Chicago should put a velodrome at the Finkl Steel site, instead of a soccer stadium.

  • johnaustingreenfield

    I agree on almost all points, put one major edge Milwaukee’s lakefront has over Chicago’s is that it doesn’t have an eight-lane highway cutting off residents from the shoreline.

  • Jeremy

    If Illinois had a governor that would do the exact opposite of Scott Walker, the state would be in good shape.

  • Courtney

    Awww man. That DCP article very much epitomizes most American politicians. Such short-sightedness.Scott Walker rejected a high-speed rail line that could have DIRECTLY appealed to Millenials but instead wants to invest the $7 million (same amount as the annual operating costs for the high-speed rail) in an ad campaign to Millenials who love public transportation……

    On another note, is it too late to encourage the CTA to take a serious look at BRT instead of extending the Red Line to 130th? I just don’t think the South side has the density or layout to maximize ridership on rail. BRT could be implemented much faster and at a lower cost.

  • Jeremy

    The Baffler column barely mentions the reason car culture has proliferated all these years: corporate profits.

    Car manufacturers, oil companies, banks, insurers, car dealers, and advertisers all make a lot of money from people feeling obligated to drive a personal automobile.

  • Kevin M

    I sure love passenger rail, but I’m no fan of this planned Red Line extension. BRT would be a fine improvement for a fraction of the cost. An even bigger bang for the buck would be to convert the ME into rapid transit. Geezus! Its right there, already built and running trains (infrequently), just 1 mile to the east of this new Red Line extension. Why are our elected leaders and their appointed “professional planners” (CMAP) ignoring this? Why wasn’t even one of the viable alternatives?

  • Kevin M

    I predict the Red Line extension will not be implemented any time soon–if ever–due to the federal government’s lack of interest in funding mass transit or investing in urban infrastructure. By the time some future version of our federal government possibly gets behind this idea, the current Red Line extension study will be as old and out-dated as the Yellow and Orange Line extension studies. Soon, all three will be collecting digital dust in the CTA’s web-archives.

    Orange Line extension: http://www.transitchicago.com/orangeeis/default.aspx
    Yellow Line extension: http://www.transitchicago.com/yelloweis/

    Pitching this Red Line extension just buys Emanuel some temporary positive news on the South-side.

  • planetshwoop

    Also, people like to drive. It’s not just about profits, people like it.

  • Chicagoan

    If the Red Line extension is such a waste of money, why are so many in the neighborhoods that’d receive the service so excited? I know people in the southern part of Roseland and Altgeld Gardens who are absolutely thrilled in regards to the possibility. It kind of feels like North Siders telling South Siders what they deserve (Nothing).

  • Kevin M

    That’s not true. All of the legit criticism I’ve read (most of which I agree with) has said that there are better, more cost-effective ways to increase transit service to the far south-side.

  • Jeremy

    And they can be finished sooner.

  • Chicagoan

    One thing that South Siders have discussed is that making the Electric District into a rapid transit line serves people in Hyde Park, Kenwood, Pullman, areas that South Siders consider to be either established or up-and-coming. Also, saying that ‘We should just convert the ED!’ isn’t of help b/c the CTA and Metra seem keen to continue competing and there’s no real discussion about making the ED into a rapid transit line besides this site and the one guy who talks about the Gray Line. Perhaps South Siders are more pragmatic about this thing, but there’s a contingent who feels as if the people who don’t like the idea don’t live on the South Side.

    You can say it’s not true, but have you spoken to people from Altgeld Gardens, Riverdale, and Roseland?

  • Courtney

    One has to wonder if people genuinely like it or if they’ve been so steeped in car culture that they don’t question it.
    Unfortunately for decades oil companies and car companies have been a major impediment to expanding and improving mass transit in this country.
    In this day and age it is shameful that we don’t have a nationwide high-speed rail line and that most people in the country HAVE to drive because public transportation is so crappy.

  • what_eva

    Because their 4-lane version in Lincoln Memorial Dr is any better? The Lake Freeway is worse.

  • johnaustingreenfield

    Yep, I’ll take a four-lane surface road over an eight-lane limited-access highway any day.

  • what_eva

    Much of its length there are no crossings whatsoever. It’s as much of a barrier for most of its length as LSD is.

  • Dennis McClendon

    A little quick-and-dirty math applied to census maps shows that no more than 20,000 people live within a quarter-mile walk of the four proposed new Red Line stations. The last mile runs through a sewage treatment plant. So where do we get 42,000 new passengers a day? If they’re arriving on buses, why not instead create a busway to 95th St.?

  • johnaustingreenfield

    Seems like a half-mile, a ten-minute walk, is a more accurate estimate of the distance most people are willing to travel to rapid transit. What are the numbers at that distance?

  • rohmen

    Germany has a very, very robust rapid transit system within cities, and very good rail links between other cities (and countries).

    Still, Germany has a car culture that comes close to reviling us—with the caveat that they don’t use cars as much for inner-ring in-city travel.

    Lack of transit options doesn’t help, but it’s not all just a lack of transit options here driving the culture.

  • Dennis McClendon

    You might get up to 30,000 souls, counting everyone in every household.

  • Robert Kania

    The Metra Electric does not go to 130th street, only has two stops in the Loop, and does not go through the Loop. The Red Line extension is the better option.