Today’s Headlines for Wednesday, July 10

  • Schwieterman: How Congestion Pricing Can Help Chicago’s Infrastructure (Crain’s)
  • Man Charged in DUI Crash That Injured 2 Police Officers in Austin (ABC)
  • Sun-Times Editorial on Scooter Safety Quotes SBC Crash Stats, John’s WTTW Interview
  • Experts Weigh in on the Environmental Impact of the Chicago Scooter Program (ENN)
  • City Officials Are Seeking Feedback on the Scooter Pilot (Curbed)
  • The City Is Implementing Chicago’s Second Pedestrian Scramble at Harrison/Morgan (Sun-Times)
  • U of C Maroon op-ed: Reducing Metra Electric Fares to CTA Rates Would Burden Taxpayers
  • Gator Spotting in Humboldt Park Leads to Outbreak of… People Having Fun in Public Space (BCC)

Get national headlines at Streetsblog USA

Note: Streetsblog Chicago will be on vacation next week, except for “Today’s Headlines.”

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  • ardecila

    Pedestrian scramble on Harrison is a nice idea, but I’m a little salty that construction crews did not provide any bikeable detours while closing north-south bike routes on Morgan and Peoria (my daily bike commute). I am forced to dismount and walk through a flower bed. Also, since the UIC-Halsted station only has an elevator at the Peoria entrance, this basically cuts off the best ADA access from the Blue Line to UIC. Seems like it would have been a simple matter to provide a few wooden curb ramps…

  • Kevin M

    Agreed that CDOT really failed to serve the existing bike, pedestrian, and wheel-chair users that still require access through the Morgan-Peoria-Harrison corridors. Yes, the majority student population is not currently on campus, but there are still thousands of staff, faculty, and summer-students who are on campus every day this summer. Very disappointing and frustrating to see this lack of care by CDOT.

  • Vector

    The city’s first scramble intersection chokes off all vehicle traffic, not allowing adequate vehicle throughput:

    https://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20130531/loop/pedestrians-warm-new-all-way-crosswalk-at-loop-intersection/

  • Jeremy

    “Adequate” is subjective, not objective.

  • Vector

    1. In the linked article, it is the CDOT Commissioner who makes the “objective” statement that vehicle throughput at the intersection is not satisfactory.

    2. If “all” cars are being slowed down or halted when they are going through the State and Jackson intersection, then “all” traffic is being choked off.

  • Jeremy

    1. Your first comment said the pedestrian scramble prevented “adequate vehicle throughput”. The article you cite was written on the first day it was open, not providing any detail to back up your claim. The CDOT Commissioner is quoted as saying the scramble “will improve the pedestrian environment and vehicular timing”. I don’t know if it actually did, but the quote doesn’t back up your claim. Is there another quote that you are referring to?

    2. “Chokes off”, synonymous with strangulation, implies preventing cars from passing altogether. The scramble, according to the article, only added a 35 second all direction crossing period to the light cycle. That is hardly as catastrophic as you are trying to make it seem.

  • Vector

    1. Quote: “We’re going to evaluate how well people take to it,” said Klein. “We’re going to do some on street polling and I’D LIKE TO SEE BETTER VEHICLE THROUGHPUT. I want to see if getting rid of turns and adjusting the intersection will reduce conflicts.”

    2. To the extent that the CDOT Commissioner stated that vehicle throughput was inadequate, that supports the notion that traffic through the intersection was being “choked,” which is defined (in pertinent part) as:

    “to make movement difficult or impossible”

    http://googledictionary.freecollocation.com/meaning?word=choke

    “Choked” does not imply that nothing can pass at all.

  • Austin Busch

    If you read for context:

    Gabe Klein was referring to the removal of turns allowing for more vehicle throughput once the pedestrian scramble was added. The problem the redesign intended to solve was that cars waiting to turn blocking other cars getting through the intersection.

    Basically, the quote you refer to is how they designed the intersection to get even more cars through. So, find the data after the fact? Was the CDOT Commissioner right in his prediction that vehicle throughput would increase after the changes?

  • rduke

    Oh, they tried to provide wooden curb ramps, and there is one, and its even 5 ft wide.

    Too bad the only way to get from that ramp to the statio or vice versa is a 2ft wide gap between the fence and the flowers.

  • Vector

    Haven’t seen anything about whether or not CDOT was able to improve vehicle throughput at the State and Jackson scramble. In my own anecdotal observations, I have not seen any vehicle traffic flow improvement.

    Note that CDOT and CTA are notoriously reluctant to produce data that makes them look bad. For example, the editor of this site had to hound CTA before they finally released data showing the the 3 mph speed of the Loop Link buses had not improved in any significant way:

    https://chi.streetsblog.org/2018/10/17/foia-ed-documents-show-loop-link-has-provided-only-modest-speed-gains/

    Similarly, this site reported on how CDOT apparently fudged crash data to obscure the reason for a street closure in Jefferson Park:

    https://chi.streetsblog.org/2015/08/03/what-does-crash-data-say-about-the-reasons-for-closing-wilsonlamon/