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VivaLFuego Nov 21, 2006 5:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DaleAvella
I don't disagree with you, but how is the Metra so great, in my opinion, compared to the CTA? Is it because of funding or competence?

Metra doesn't have to run copious amounts of hopelessly unprofitable off-peak and charity service like CTA. Metra also receives a relatively high share of the regional sales tax collections relative to the amount of service it provides.

So to answer your question, yes its funding, and its also expectations of the agency (i.e. people have realistic expecations of Metra, so Metra isn't criticized for running 4 trains per day on the Heritage Corridor, or running trains every 2 hours off-peak on other lines, for example).

Of course I don't want to take any money from Metra, since it is a major asset to the Chicago region, especially in its current well-run state (though I'm surprised people give them a pass on their failure to have any interest in integrating downtown services with CTA). But regional transit needs more funding, period.

Taft Nov 21, 2006 7:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by VivaLFuego
Metra doesn't have to run copious amounts of hopelessly unprofitable off-peak and charity service like CTA. Metra also receives a relatively high share of the regional sales tax collections relative to the amount of service it provides.

So to answer your question, yes its funding, and its also expectations of the agency (i.e. people have realistic expecations of Metra, so Metra isn't criticized for running 4 trains per day on the Heritage Corridor, or running trains every 2 hours off-peak on other lines, for example).

Of course I don't want to take any money from Metra, since it is a major asset to the Chicago region, especially in its current well-run state (though I'm surprised people give them a pass on their failure to have any interest in integrating downtown services with CTA). But regional transit needs more funding, period.

Exactly! Take a look at the weekday schedule of one of their busier lines:

http://metrarail.com/Sched/cnw_n/cnwn_wki.shtml

They only try to run a train every 10 minutes at peak times. The rest of the day it is every hour or so.

Compare that to the CTA's Green line:

http://transitchicago.com/maps/rail/gp_clinton.html

Even though the green line is one of the least ridden lines in the system, it is still running a train every 8 minutes for most of the day. When the CTA has tried to trim service on these lines, they met with stiff opposition from community groups, "help the poor" organizations, etc. pretty much forcing them to keep a high level of service.

Imagine if Metra was told it had to run 6 times as many trains on all of its lines. They would never recoup that in ticket sales. Welcome to the CTA's world.

On an unrelated note, does anyone have stats on how much the CTA spends on bus service vs. train? I'm not sure I've ever seen the breakdown. Given their massive bus fleet, I'd imagine bus maintenance is a huge cost. But tracks are costly, too.

Taft

DaleAvella Nov 24, 2006 4:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Taft
Even though the green line is one of the least ridden lines in the system, it is still running a train every 8 minutes for most of the day. When the CTA has tried to trim service on these lines, they met with stiff opposition from community groups, "help the poor" organizations, etc. pretty much forcing them to keep a high level of service.

Likewise reactions of "serving the rich" when any mention of additional public transit along the north lakeshore (i.e. Streeterville, Clark St.) is proposed. I can see how politics rather than actual demand for transportation services clearly plays a role in CTA services, whereas this is less the case with Metra.

Nowhereman1280 Nov 24, 2006 10:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by alex1
car advertisements. the ad world's goal is to change habits through psychology. it changed the place. also, the car manufacturer's had enough money to skew politician's priorties away from public funding for transit to public funding for highways and bigger roads.

sad really. our nation hasn't benefited from being so isolated either. Any dimwit traveling to Europe sees the benefits of great public transportation that places such as Berlin, Munich, Madrid, Barcelona or Paris have.

Well, yes it was the change in popular culture in addition to the fact that we could all afford cars, lets face it, they are cheep and easy, especially when the infrastructure for them is so built up as it is here. And honestly, even the biggest fans of Mass Transit, myself included, cannot deny that there is a thrill to driving a car and a certain feeling of freedom that doesn't quite exist with Mass Transit.

Anyhow, what would really be nice would be some more circular movement in the El system, you can't get anywhere that is not along your line with any efficiancy right now, its really annoying, trasferring to a bunch of busses every time you need to go West from the Red line! I agree with your points on how many more costs CTA has to deal with, but I really think they are worth it, I would hate not having 24 hr service on the main lines and the frequency of one train every <5 minutes durring rush hour!

alex1 Nov 25, 2006 7:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nowhereman1280
Anyhow, what would really be nice would be some more circular movement in the El system, you can't get anywhere that is not along your line with any efficiancy right now, its really annoying, trasferring to a bunch of busses every time you need to go West from the Red line! I agree with your points on how many more costs CTA has to deal with, but I really think they are worth it, I would hate not having 24 hr service on the main lines and the frequency of one train every <5 minutes durring rush hour!

i would say that a successful transit system has more then point A to B to A capabilities and runs trains every 2-4 minutes tops (any time of day). so I definately agree with all your points.

The circle line is one piece of that puzzle but it's just a small piece.

spyguy Dec 3, 2006 5:32 PM

http://www.chicagotribune.com/techno...l=chi-news-hed

Streaming video to aid CTA buses, train stops

By Charles Sheehan

Tribune staff reporter
Published December 3, 2006

Dozens of city buses and rail stations will be outfitted with streaming video technology as part of a pilot project that Mayor Richard Daley said will vastly improve security in Chicago.

The Chicago Transit Authority this month will install wireless transmitters in 40 buses--as well as at select rail stops--that will be linked to laptop computers and monitors in CTA security vehicles and the CTA command center.

An impetus for the $2.4 million pilot project, funded by a grant from the Department of Homeland Security, was the mass-transit bombings in Madrid and London, Daley said Saturday.

"Let's be realistic. London was always at the forefront, and you see the detection recently in the London bombings and the reaction, how they found out who [the bombers] were so quickly," he said.

CTA President Frank Kruesi said cameras already installed in buses will be used to transmit the data over the new wireless network. "The mobile security network expands the capabilities of security cameras on our buses."

Images from onboard a bus can be viewed by a moving vehicle within 600 feet of the bus, giving emergency personnel better, more up-to-date information about what may be happening.

Each bus is fitted with internal and external cameras, and the same technology can be used to space buses between stops and provide better service, Kruesi said.

Officials hope to expand the system throughout the city after a six-month test.

The two mass-transit incidents in Europe have spurred security concerns. In 2004, train bombings in Madrid left 191 people dead and injured more than 1,700. In July 2005, a series of coordinated bomb blasts on underground trains and a bus killed 52 people in London.

aaron38 Dec 5, 2006 3:59 PM

Does the CTA have any plans for adding stations along existing lines, especially in areas of increasing density?
With the explosive growth of the Central Station area, it looks to me that it would make a lot of sense to add a station at 16th street, right before the red, orange and green lines all split.
There's a whole bunch of new customers moving into this neighborhood who'd be a lot more likely to jump on a CTA train if a stop is a right there instead of having to walk up to Roosevelt.
Just wondering if any plans were in the works.

VivaLFuego Dec 5, 2006 9:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aaron38
Does the CTA have any plans for adding stations along existing lines, especially in areas of increasing density?
With the explosive growth of the Central Station area, it looks to me that it would make a lot of sense to add a station at 16th street, right before the red, orange and green lines all split.
There's a whole bunch of new customers moving into this neighborhood who'd be a lot more likely to jump on a CTA train if a stop is a right there instead of having to walk up to Roosevelt.
Just wondering if any plans were in the works.

There are plans but unfortuntaely nothing will happen in the near future.

The only short term new station will be Oakton on the Yellow Line in Skokie.

The city eventually wants to build Green Line stations at 18th or Cermak (to serve McCormick Place and South Loop), and then at either Western or Damen.

As part of the Circle Line Project, CTA wants to add a station at Roosevelt on the Douglas branch, a transfer station over the Eisenhower to the Forest Park branch, a station at Madison for the United Center, and a transfer station at Archer between the Circle, Red, and Orange lines (the north part of the station would have an entrance around 18th/Archer, which would serve some of the South Loop).

honte Dec 5, 2006 9:28 PM

^ Were the West Loopers ever successful in persuading the CTA to consider a Green Line stop near Racine?

denizen467 Dec 6, 2006 6:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by VivaLFuego
The city eventually wants to build Green Line stations at 18th or Cermak (to serve McCormick Place and South Loop), and then at either Western or Damen.

Was there specific mention of Cermak and of 18th, or is that just rough conjecture? Cermak makes a lot of sense for McCormick Place, but 18th is a little random (why not Cullerton and cover both McC and S Loop?).

VivaLFuego Dec 6, 2006 8:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by denizen467
Was there specific mention of Cermak and of 18th, or is that just rough conjecture? Cermak makes a lot of sense for McCormick Place, but 18th is a little random (why not Cullerton and cover both McC and S Loop?).

Well 18th is a half mile street, unlike Cullerton.

Last I "heard", the leaning was towards Cermak to serve McCormick place and all the planned development in the Cermak corridor.

the urban politician Dec 6, 2006 4:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by honte
^ Were the West Loopers ever successful in persuading the CTA to consider a Green Line stop near Racine?

^ Unfortunately, from what I read a few months ago, there are no plans at this time to build a stop there.

denizen467 Dec 9, 2006 8:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by VivaLFuego (Post 2492757)
Well 18th is a half mile street, unlike Cullerton.

Last I "heard", the leaning was towards Cermak to serve McCormick place and all the planned development in the Cermak corridor.

How is 18th a half-mile street?

VivaLFuego Dec 9, 2006 5:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by denizen467 (Post 2498627)
How is 18th a half-mile street?

18th is a half-mile street between Roosevelt and Cermak.

alex1 Dec 12, 2006 5:14 AM

18th is longer then half a mile. From Indiana to Western. Unless there's an 18th n/s running street that I've never heard of.

bcp Dec 12, 2006 5:22 AM

major streets in chicago tend to be 1 mile apart...18th St. and a few others create a half-mile pattern IIRC

VivaLFuego Dec 12, 2006 6:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bcp (Post 2504103)
major streets in chicago tend to be 1 mile apart...18th St. and a few others create a half-mile pattern IIRC

The numbering system is a little silly.....it's one mile from Madison to Roosevelt (12th St.), another mile to Cermak (22nd), another mile to 31st, then the miles are every 8 blocks thereafter going south.

18ths isn't actually halfway between Roosevelt and Cermak (it's closer to Cermak), but it serves as the "half-mile" street, i.e. a secondary arterial.

denizen467 Dec 12, 2006 7:20 AM

Roosevelt to Cermak is 1 mile?!? Jeez, I thought we could rely on a standard measuring unit of 800 street numbers = 1 mile. Where else is it bastardized on the north-south axis -- is it, say, 1 mile from Roosevelt to Congress (only 700 numbers)?

If you can't trust the 800 = 1 mile rule, whom can you trust? :irked:

VivaLFuego Dec 12, 2006 3:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by denizen467 (Post 2504322)
Roosevelt to Cermak is 1 mile?!? Jeez, I thought we could rely on a standard measuring unit of 800 street numbers = 1 mile. Where else is it bastardized on the north-south axis -- is it, say, 1 mile from Roosevelt to Congress (only 700 numbers)?

If you can't trust the 800 = 1 mile rule, whom can you trust? :irked:

Congress is the "half-mile" between Madison and Roosevelt.

Chicago Shawn Dec 12, 2006 11:26 PM

Another delay....

I'm sick of the constant delays, it's almost everyday now. The CTA is becoming a joke of its former self. The system is going to calapse if more money isn't found. Just think how much worse the issue will be if the CTA is forced to defer another half billion away from maintainece over the next four years if the funding formula is not fixed...

CTA Red Line service back to normal

By Dan P. Blake
Tribune staff reporter
Published December 12, 2006, 3:47 PM CST


Southbound trains on the CTA's Red Line have resumed their regular route after a problem with the track this morning, but Orange Line trains will continue to travel in reverse direction around the Loop through the end of the day because of a defective switch, a transit spokeswoman said.

Southbound Red Line trains are again running through the subway, CTA spokeswoman Wanda Taylor said just after noon. The trains had been traveling along elevated tracks between the Fullerton Avenue and Cermak Road stations because of a cracked rail in the subway. Northbound trains were not affected.

Meanwhile, CTA Orange Line trains will keep traveling in a reverse direction from their normal routing around the Loop through early Wednesday morning, Taylor said.

Orange Line trains normally enter the Loop from the south and run clockwise around the inside elevated tracks beginning at the Library station, at State and Van Buren Streets.

But because of the malfunctioning switch, trains are running counterclockwise on the outer tracks, beginning at the Adams Street-Wabash Avenue stop and exiting the Loop after leaving Library, according to the CTA.

Customers will have to board Orange Line trains on the opposite side of the platform from which they normally board. Taylor said repairs will be made to the Orange Line overnight.

Also starting at 9 p.m., Pink Line trains will be re-rerouted on the outer elevated track for repairs to install a new switch, Taylor said. Once they enter the Loop, trains will operate in the reverse direction, and riders will have to board trains on the outer platforms in the Loop, the same platform as Brown Line trains.

The Red Line problem was the latest on that subway in a little more than a month.

On Nov. 10, passengers were stranded on eight CTA trains in the subway for more than an hour after a loose part near the wheels of one train knocked about 100 feet of electrified third rail slightly out of alignment near the North-Clybourn station. A number of passengers put themselves at risk by evacuating the trains.

Other trains were re-routed over the elevated structure, as they were today, until the problem was fixed.

The Red Line incident came nearly four months after a train derailment and fire in the Blue Line subway sent more than 150 people to hospitals.


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