Today’s Headlines for Thursday, August 8

  • Lightfoot names Maurice Cox as the new planning department commissioner (Crain’s)
  • Ambulance driver critically injures man, 86, crossing the street in Des Plaines (CBS)
  • Driver charged with DUI for fatal August 3 Crash on the Bishop Ford (Sun-Times)
  • Possible bomb threat shut down CTA trains at Roosevelt last night for 45 minutes (NBC)
  • BRT opponent Romanelli: Truckers are destroying the new Fulton streetscape (Block Club)
  • A honey of an interview: WTTW checks in with biking beekeeper Jana Kinsman
  • John discusses bike initiatives at the Chicago Cycling Club meeting on 8/14 at 6:30 PM at Earth Rider

I’d like to give a big thanks to everyone who has donated so far this year to help us raise $50K by our December 1 deadline in order to win the $50K challenge grant from the Chicago Community Trust. Can you help us win the grant by chipping in? You can make a tax-exempt donation here.

Thanks for your support, and enjoy the rest of your summer.

– John Greenfield, editor, Streetsblog Chicago

  • ardecila

    LOL at the Fulton Market article. Why are we blaming the city for a literal army of trucks and heavy equipment that descend on the street every day for the MANY construction sites there? This is why we can’t have nice things…

    Also, WTF was with that comment about Casper? The streetscape phase 1 was finished before Casper moved in. It’s their own fault if they chose a retail space that is inconvenient for their customers…

    Last – since many of the construction sites have removed streetscape elements, I’m sure the city has collected security deposits from all of them. If there is damage to the streetscape, the security deposits can be used to fix the damage… but they will probably wait another 2-3 years until most of the big projects on Fulton are completed.

  • Tooscrapps

    Some of the statements are definitely absurd, but the fact is that the bollards are supposed to protect people on the sidewalk. If they just get knocked over from a turning truck, they certainly are not resilient enough. Would you line these around a Federal building?

  • rohmen

    Agreed. A lot of the comments are absurd, but the streetscape was poorly designed and implemented. The two intersections where they have added rough cobblestones make cycling on that stretch tougher than it should be, and I’m curious to see what happens with pedestrians in the winter given that they can’t really easily be plowed and cleared of snow and ice given the uneven nature.

    Also, the City knew that area was going to be an active construction site for a long time, with multiple buildings being torn down, and the streetscape has made navigating the area for everyone much tougher during the construction. I think the City really should have held off and did the streetscape once the big, already permitted construction projects were done, and the only alternative now is to hope the City is going after the developers for the damage to the current infrastructure.

  • ardecila

    The city already has money from the developers – the “landscape deposits” charged by the city are pretty steep and they only go up when you build on a street-scaped block like Fulton.

    I also love the cobbles, even as a cyclist riding through here daily… it forces cars to move slowly instead of gunning through intersections like they normally do. That’s a safer setup even if the pavement is a little rough on your butt.

  • rohmen

    I have no clue on the deposits, so I’ll take your word, and good to hear there’s some mechanism for it.

    To each there own on cobblestones, but I personally hate them in this type of scenario as a cyclist. I also can’t imagine they’re easy on anyone with walking mobility issues or in a wheelchair. They very markedly decided not to do them on the intersections further west, so not sure if that was a concession on the backlash (and I know Active Trans complained about them) or was always planned.

    To be honest, the Fulton Streetscape has made cycling down Fulton so bad IMHO that I’ve diverted to Lake, which is saying something given how bad Lake is for cars cutting into the bike lane. Fulton is just way over capacity, however, and it doesn’t feel great to ride as a cyclist. I hope the pedestrian experience turns out much better when it’s all done to justify the changes made.

  • Random_Jerk

    Fulton Street “improvements” can hardly be called streetscape. Nothing really exciting as for the hottest neighborhood in Chicago/US. Comparing to some places I’ve seen abroad, it looks primitive, cheap and its really poorly executed. Navy Pier streetscape is way better. The Fulton Market should be a true woonerf or better, it should be closed to the traffic altogether. Why would city green light the project knowing that there will be so much construction going on. I think it would be OK if they waited year or two. Now fixing it will probably cost another 10 mil. City that works.