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-   -   CHICAGO: Transit Developments (https://skyscraperpage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=101657)

Chicago Shawn Aug 12, 2010 12:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 4942983)

I'm gonna get a little bit wonkish here, but...


In defense of Sugar Grove Mama, the lack of a complete second orbital highway is really a drag on mobility through the region, placing heavy traffic on the Tri-State and the routes through the city. The 53 extension and the Illiana are two of the three missing segments in that orbital highway, so I support those plans - especially because they would be paid for with toll revenue and not the state's money. The federal contribution would come from the highway "pot" of funds, which is distinct from the transit "pot".

What all that means is that highway construction would NOT be done at the expense of transit. People tend to think that one competes with the other for money, but that just isn't the case here in Chicagoland. The state is broke, of course, so it's not like there's any money to be had from the general fund anyway.

I agree. Building tollway extensions in already developed areas will actually save us money because we can eliminate the need to expand existing state roads that are close to or already at capacity. Since half of Lake County is already built out and will not likely be getting any denser (aside from pockets near Metra Stations), building the 53 extension will really not change land use patterns all that much, and overall traffic amounts probably won't increase all that much either. Meanwhile, traffic demands and the wear and tear it creates can be absorb by a road that will pay for itself.

jpIllInoIs Aug 12, 2010 4:57 AM

There has been some developments in planning what used to be known as the Rte.53 northern extension. The majority of the opposition to the road came from 3 towns: Long Grove, Hawthorne Woods and a small section of Mundelein where a subdivision was built on both sides of the right of way. The northern towns wisely decoupled the projects' northern East-West alignment and formed the 120 Bypass task force. This led to the development of a plan to construct the "Belvidere Boulevard" within the right of way of the former Rt.53 extension. Through many town meetings and consultant drafts the committee has agreed to recommend the building of a state of the art 4 lane limited access boulevard implementing intersection round-abouts and rail/road grade separated under passes rather than a 6 lane elevated highway with cloverleafs. Executive report here. The roadway will use bio-swales and landscaped medians to collect runoff to protect the watershed . The 4 lane boulevard has some more advantages including using less land especially at intersections and being more accessible to transit buses. Website here.

It is very likely that the north-south leg of the Rte 53 extension will also be built as a boulevard. The environmental constraints of Lake County are unique or at least acknowledged. Lake County has many shallow water features known variously as bogs, fens, swales, ponds and marshes that are especially prone to pollution from road runoff. The boulevard system allows for a much smaller road footprint and can weave and meander to avoid sensitive areas. And the inclusion of the bio-swale drainage alongside the entire road length is at least a commitment to limit the impact of our human activity.

ardecila Aug 13, 2010 4:54 AM

Oh, man... that looks terrible. It would be great if the interchanges were roundabouts with flyovers or fly-unders, like they're building in Carmel, IN. A 4-lane highway is perfectly fine, but whatever the lane count, the highway needs to be fully grade separated. They can add bike paths, greenways, and bioswales to their heart's content, and let the alignment weave and meander, but don't take away the one thing that makes this highway a relief to congestion - the grade separation.

Also, without grade-separated, access-controlled interchanges, it will be incredibly difficult to charge tolls, so the funding for this will have to come from somewhere else.

jpIllInoIs Aug 13, 2010 1:24 PM

^ Yeah this East-West only proposal emerged before CMAP pushed the entire 53 Northern Extension project up to No.1 on the need to build list and without consideration as a toll road.

I did a quick search for grade separated roundabouts and Carmel, In. I came up empty. All documents in Carmel indicated standard roundabout interchanges. Do you have any links to actual projects that are or will be built?

ardecila Aug 14, 2010 5:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jpIllInoIs (Post 4945935)
I did a quick search for grade separated roundabouts and Carmel, In. I came up empty. All documents in Carmel indicated standard roundabout interchanges. Do you have any links to actual projects that are or will be built?

What I meant was more the British style/Massachusetts rotary, where there's only one big roundabout (although most of the Massachusetts rotaries are technically traffic circles, and are much more accident-prone than a true roundabout). Traffic on the surface street and the exit ramps all cycles through the roundabout, while traffic on the expressway flies over on a bridge or under in a trench.

The ones in Carmel are topologically the same - the roundabout is just pinched in the middle so that it only needs one bridge instead of two (called a "dogbone" roundabout). I think it looks nicer to have one big circle, though, where you can then deck over the circle to form public space.


Roosevelt Circle, Medford, MA


In order to be a roundabout, traffic waiting to enter the roundabout must yield to traffic already in the roundabout, so they tend to cause backups, especially with timid drivers. The advantage is that a driver will only enter the roundabout when he feels there is enough space and that he can enter safely. This greatly reduces accidents, but slows traffic speeds. A traffic circle, on the other hand, gives the right-of-way to entering traffic, but drivers already in the circle tend to assume that THEY have the right-of-way, so you have two cars trying to occupy the same patch of road... recipe for disaster.

OhioGuy Aug 17, 2010 2:44 PM

CTA averages 1 bus collision a day

Quote:

CTA buses have slammed into light poles, viaducts and bus shelters. Even a house took a direct hit, damaged so severely that it had to be demolished.

The CTA bus fleet logged more than 9.3 million runs last year, and not without a scratch.

CTA buses have been involved in more collisions annually since 2008 than buses operated by the nine other largest public bus systems in the United States, according to records compiled for the Tribune by the Federal Transit Administration. The accident rate reflects a bus incident occurring almost every day on average.

lawfin Aug 17, 2010 7:12 PM

Scott Walker, the Republican candidate for Governor in Wisconsin, has launched a major attack against passenger trains in Wisconsin. Please ask your friends in Wisconsin to show their support for passenger rail expansion.

Wisconsin was awarded Recovery Act funds to extend the successful Amtrak Hiawatha from Milwaukee to Madison. Walker has promised to stop construction if he is elected.

This week, he held an anti-train rally in Milwaukee and began running TV ads promising to "stop this train". He even set up a special website: http://www.NoTrain.com

We have set up an action page where Wisconsin residents can show their support. Please forward this email to your friends in Wisconsin and ask them to support passenger trains.

The action page is located at:
http://www.MidwestHSR.org/Wisconsin

J_M_Tungsten Aug 17, 2010 8:35 PM

^^^ why is he trying to stop it?

OhioGuy Aug 17, 2010 8:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by J_M_Tungsten (Post 4950516)
^^^ why is he trying to stop it?

Because he doesn't want the state to subsidize its operations each year and he thinks funding should go to roads & bridges. Meanwhile, Europe and Asia continue to build rail high speed rail...

The 3 C's corridor is likely to face the chopping block when the current Ohio governor, Ted Strickland, loses his reelection to anti-rail Republican John Kasich this fall.

Vile Republicans.

the urban politician Aug 17, 2010 9:07 PM

^ All the money the morons from Wisconsin and Ohio lose should go towards rail elsewhere, regardless. The Republicans should not achieve their goal of derailing the funding of rail in America (no pun intended)

Nowhereman1280 Aug 17, 2010 11:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by the urban politician (Post 4950588)
^ All the money the morons from Wisconsin and Ohio lose should go towards rail elsewhere, regardless. The Republicans should not achieve their goal of derailing the funding of rail in America (no pun intended)

You know Scott Walker is a moron and in no way representative of Wisconsinites in general. He has been extremely effective... at driving Milwaukee County into the ground for the past decade or so.

ardecila Aug 18, 2010 12:37 AM

Whatever. We still get our high-speed train to St. Louis. Iowa, Michigan and Minnesota seem like they strongly support rail service, and even Indiana is somewhat supportive under Mitch Daniels.

If Wisconsin wants out, let them go. We'll build the line to the Twin Cities through Iowa and let Milwaukee and Madison crumble. And if Ohio is so backwards that they'd rather spend money improving their gold-plated expressways than introducing even basic rail service, then screw them too.

OhioGuy Aug 18, 2010 1:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nowhereman1280 (Post 4950787)
You know Scott Walker is a moron and in no way representative of Wisconsinites in general. He has been extremely effective... at driving Milwaukee County into the ground for the past decade or so.

Isn't Scott Walker leading in the polls?

intrepidDesign Aug 18, 2010 2:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 4950855)
Whatever. We still get our high-speed train to St. Louis. Iowa, Michigan and Minnesota seem like they strongly support rail service, and even Indiana is somewhat supportive under Mitch Daniels.

If Wisconsin wants out, let them go. We'll build the line to the Twin Cities through Iowa and let Milwaukee and Madison crumble. And if Ohio is so backwards that they'd rather spend money improving their gold-plated expressways than introducing even basic rail service, then screw them too.

I couldn't agree more.

Mr Downtown Aug 18, 2010 6:39 PM


Push renewed for premium rail service to O'Hare

Mayor Richard Daley on Wednesday relaunched a stalled proposal to lure private investors to build and operate a premium express train service between downtown and O’Hare International Airport.

The mayor announced formation of 17-member committee, headed by businessman Lester Crown, to study the concept and report back to Daley at an unspecified date.


Chicago Tribune story here

denizen467 Aug 19, 2010 9:56 AM

^ And what does Professor Downtown think about this?

Personally, I think it could be a big hit if it had carpeted, comfy coaches with plenty of luggage space, even if the time was still about 45 minutes. You could get families and grandmas out of taxis & buses and off the Kennedy if you had something that was virtually guaranteed safe (no stops except at airports and downtown) and was reasonably pleasant (no freezing wind rushing through the railcars every 3 minutes at a station).

I just worry about taxi hell around Block 37. So a West Loop station might become necessary.

bnk Aug 19, 2010 11:56 AM

Slightly updated version of the same article

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2...vice-blue-line

jpIllInoIs Aug 19, 2010 2:30 PM

Concerning the rapid rail direct to O'Hare. It seems that the median in the Ike Expressway has ample room for a ROW. Especially with CN rerouting nearly all of their through traffic to the EJE. The Ike ROW has access to the Blue Line subway on the East end Downtown, and the Ike ROW has access to the old CN line on the West end after Harlem-Forest Park. Maybe this is a good route for an express service line to Ohare??

emathias Aug 19, 2010 3:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by denizen467 (Post 4952554)
...
I just worry about taxi hell around Block 37. So a West Loop station might become necessary.

I've always thought express service to the West Loop made the most sense (if express service makes sense at all). To do it justice, though, you have to build the West Loop Transportation Center. From a cost standpoint, it might actually be cheapest to built is as a deep tunnel express deep enough it avoids any and all utlities for most of the route. If the Deep Tunnel waterworks can be completed for $3 billion, then it seems one 33-foot-diameter, 16-mile-long tunnel could be built for a lot less than that. Adding tracks and appropriate ventilation would cost something, but for cost/speed tradeoffs, I would think that a long tunnel would be competitive. Ideally, you might even go under O'Hare, pop above-ground to continue north.

33 feet should leave it wide enough for dual tracks with spacing for TGV-sized vehicles, meaning it could be tied into HSR systems to Milwaukee. Imagine a West Loop station with a 15-minute trip to ORD, a 5-minute layover, followed by a 30-minute trip to MKE, 5-minute layover, 10-minute trip to central Milwaukee. Chicago-Milwaukee in 65 minutes, an effective third regional airport for Chicagoland, and tighter integration between Milwaukee and Chicago.

As to what to do with the tracks under Block 37, I vote for completing the western portal under Lake for the Blue Line subway and routing the Green Line through the subway instead of over the Loop, thereby making Loop operations less complex (albeit at the expense of more complicated Blue and Red Line operations).

bnk Aug 20, 2010 6:22 AM

duplicate .....


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