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lawfin May 3, 2011 5:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by stevevance (Post 5264700)
I'm concerned about the plot "created" within the project (surrounded by Damen on the west, Elston on the north and east, and Fullerton on the south).

If any buildings are allowed to be built here, they may need driveways and off-street parking, making the newly-simple roadway design slightly more complex.

I was thinking this plot could be made passive green space. Add a bunch of curb/sidewalk adjacent landscaping to serve as a visual distraction that would slow traffic.

Yeah I think both of those plots will over time succumb to pure auto-centric strip style development because anything else I think would find the peculiarities of the site layout too challenging....


Maybe I am missing the boat on this and I just don't get it but I really think this intersection design condemns that intersection to autocentric hell for all eternity

ChiTownCity May 3, 2011 6:20 PM

^you and me both....

the urban politician May 3, 2011 6:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lawfin (Post 5264724)
Re: the Elston / Damen / Fullerton intersection

Count me as thinking this is a terrible idea. I know that intersection is tough but I see this as being worse at least at street level for neighborhood continuity and pedestrians......not that there are a lot of pedestrian hoofing it across the damen / fullerton intersection.

This might be good for transporting cars and getting suburbanites who get off at fullerton to this part of the city but I think for most of the people who live arpound here this "solution" is worse than the problem.....


Diced up isolated land dominated by increased traffic lanes does not make for a pleasant neighborhood


We really focus too much on the car in this town.....Chicago is screwed in the transportation dept.....I've given up; it seems Chicago looks west for its transportation inspiration; not even as far west as LA....which is doing some really exciting things in the transport dept.....but but more like Dallas or Phx.....

ugh

^ Ultimately, this project is still a ways from happening.

And with the city getting a brand new head of DOT who is more bike and transit-minded, there is always the possibility for new changes to the plan.

LMJCobalt May 3, 2011 11:16 PM

Lawfin, please propose another alternative that you think works better for this intersection.

As a resident of this neighborhood--I don't know why any suburbanite would chose to go down here--I would like to be able to drive through it and not sit in traffic for a half hour.

Steve thanks for the pics and the recap of the meeting on your website, from one MUPP to another.

Beta_Magellan May 4, 2011 1:44 AM

Umm…based on the first article posted here about this intersection, this was designed more with truck traffic in mind:

Quote:

In addition, due to the six legs of the intersection, the short distances between lights which lead to backups up to a half-mile in either direction, insufficient turning radii for large trucks, delays getting through the Damen-Elston-Fullerton intersection can take up to seven minutes at peak traffic times.
Although I have to admit that I’m not familiar with the area (I’ve only passed through via car or bus)—while according to streetview there’s some fairly dense residential tucked into the nearby streets, as a whole it strikes me as fairly industrial. I’d think truck traffic would be fairly heavy around and through this part of town, and it makes sense to plan with them in mind.

Quote:

Originally Posted by lawfin (Post 5264730)
Maybe I am missing the boat on this and I just don't get it but I really think this intersection design condemns that intersection to autocentric hell for all eternity

I think the Kennedy kind of doomed the neighborhood to that. As for the intersection itself, I don’t see how an overpass or underpass would have been better. And as a pedestrian, I generally find four-way intersections more palatable than six-way ones.

lawfin May 4, 2011 3:50 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LMJCobalt (Post 5265159)
Lawfin, please propose another alternative that you think works better for this intersection.

As a resident of this neighborhood--I don't know why any suburbanite would chose to go down here--I would like to be able to drive through it and not sit in traffic for a half hour.

Steve thanks for the pics and the recap of the meeting on your website, from one MUPP to another.

I am not a civil engineer; nor a traffic engineer. So get off your high horse that a proposal cannot be criticized by implying that I have to have a better alternative. That is why we have professions; if they are talented designers as well as competent technicians they should be able to do better...especially with the second order downstream impacts of their design.

It just seems to me as an urban enthusiast, who appreciates Chicago for what it has left of pre-auto urbanity that this proposal is just one more nail in the coffin of urban chicago and one more flag raised to the auto.


Perhaps if you don't like sitting in traffic you should do something about that and get out of your car; as that is far more in your power than me proposing an alternative to CDOT for this proposal....what an asinine suggestion....


Wicker park has some of the best transit access in the city between the blue line / metra / buses.....my proposal is for you to get out of your car or quit your bitching about sitting in traffic since you are part of the problem

Nowhereman1280 May 4, 2011 4:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lawfin (Post 5265462)

Wicker park has some of the best transit access in the city between the blue line / metra / buses.....my proposal is for you to get out of your car or quit your bitching about sitting in traffic since you are part of the problem

I don't think he is bitching or speaking down to you lawfin, I think he's just legitimately wondering if you have a better idea. Since when is anyone on this site qualified to speak about 75% of the things they comment on? Hell, maybe 10% of us are architects, yet we all feel entitled to suggest our favorite changes to every design we see.

Also, this is hardly part of Wicker Park. This isn't even technically a neighborhood, it's generally considered the "Elston Industrial Corridor" and will probably never be a pedestrian friendly place since large swaths of it are designated to remain industrial for eternity by the city. Remember that Milwaukee and Damen is approximately 1.5 miles Southwest of here. So unless you consider a 1.5 mile walk to the EL and a 1/2 mile walk to the Metra to be "well connected" to transit, the area is really a transit desert.

LMJCobalt May 4, 2011 4:58 AM

I suggested proposing an alternative as a means of correcting, rather than just criticizing, what you find to be an abhorrent solution to a poorly designed intersection. There already enough opinions on internet, why add another.

Its clear to me that your issue lies with the nature of automobile use itself, rather than the actual design proposal for the intersection. For that I don't know what to say. People drive cars, and they don't like to sit in traffic. When you can fix that problem its usually a good thing. Good urban design and automobile use need not be mutually exclusive.

As for your issue with my personal transportation choices. I'd just like to point out that I commute everyday to work by train. When the weather is nice I will ride my bike. As for commuting within my neighborhood I will walk or ride my bike. But every now and then when I need to buy some larger items at the Home Depot or buy a bunch of groceries at Strak and Van Til on Elston the bus just ain't gonna cut it.

Finally I'll assert that you don't need a civil engineering degree or masters in urban planning to propose or even shape the design of cities and even roadway intersections. The proposal for this intersection was just presented to the public last week. Members of CDOT, and the 32nd Ward's Alderman Scott Waguespack, were in attendance to hear the views of neighborhood residents. Design alternatives are frequently floated before the public to elicit feedback as part of the planning process. After all public support is needed for large scale public works projects. If you have ideas or solutions in mind they could be included or at least considered.

lawfin May 4, 2011 5:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nowhereman1280 (Post 5265544)
I don't think he is bitching or speaking down to you lawfin, I think he's just legitimately wondering if you have a better idea. Since when is anyone on this site qualified to speak about 75% of the things they comment on? Hell, maybe 10% of us are architects, yet we all feel entitled to suggest our favorite changes to every design we see.

Also, this is hardly part of Wicker Park. This isn't even technically a neighborhood, it's generally considered the "Elston Industrial Corridor" and will probably never be a pedestrian friendly place since large swaths of it are designated to remain industrial for eternity by the city. Remember that Milwaukee and Damen is approximately 1.5 miles Southwest of here. So unless you consider a 1.5 mile walk to the EL and a 1/2 mile walk to the Metra to be "well connected" to transit, the area is really a transit desert.

Yeah I had bucktown in my head when I typed wicker park; when I am in that neighborhood ...bucktown / wicker park...I am almost always down there via either bike or transit...The metra really isn't too bad of a walk over to Damen.

I guess when I am flying up Damen on my bike from North / Milw fullerton doesn't seem like a mile. Probably because the scenery is usually interesting.

Exactly what this proposal will not sustain

anyhow maybe I took it the wrong way...it seemed kind of snide...and I am in kind of a prickly mood

lawfin May 4, 2011 5:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LMJCobalt (Post 5265556)
I suggested proposing an alternative as a means of correcting, rather than just criticizing, what you find to be an abhorrent solution to a poorly designed intersection. There already enough opinions on internet, why add another.

Its clear to me that your issue lies with the nature of automobile use itself, rather than the actual design proposal for the intersection. For that I don't know what to say. People drive cars, and they don't like to sit in traffic. When you can fix that problem its usually a good thing. Good urban design and automobile use need not be mutually exclusive.

As for your issue with my personal transportation choices. I'd just like to point out that I commute everyday to work by train. When the weather is nice I will ride my bike. As for commuting within my neighborhood I will walk or ride my bike. But every now and then when I need to buy some larger items at the Home Depot or buy a bunch of groceries at Strak and Van Til on Elston the bus just ain't gonna cut it.

Finally I'll assert that you don't need a civil engineering degree or masters in urban planning to propose or even shape the design of cities and even roadway intersections. The proposal for this intersection was just presented to the public last week. Members of CDOT, and the 32nd Ward's Alderman Scott Waguespack, were in attendance to hear the views of neighborhood residents. Design alternatives are frequently floated before the public to elicit feedback as part of the planning process. After all public support is needed for large scale public works projects. If you have ideas or solutions in mind they could be included or at least considered.

Sorry if i took you the wrong way

lawfin May 4, 2011 5:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LMJCobalt (Post 5265556)

Its clear to me that your issue lies with the nature of automobile use itself, rather than the actual design proposal for the intersection. For that I don't know what to say.

really you must be incredibly perspicacious to be able to discern that about me from an online post regarding a singular traffic proposal.

Quote:

People drive cars, and they don't like to sit in traffic. When you can fix that problem its usually a good thing. Good urban design and automobile use need not be mutually exclusive.
Perhaps....though it is quite a difficult nut to crack to serve the different underlying priorities of the human scale and the auto scale. They may not need be mutually exclusive but they almost always are as in the case of this proposal.

LMJCobalt May 4, 2011 5:21 AM

Eh, its the internet, misunderstandings happen every day. But am I wrong about the hating cars? I mean "autocentric hell" doesn't elicit a lot of positive connotations. :)

I think if you bike through that intersection the changes might make it easier. I'd be nervous with people making left turns there because its such a mess--just like the Chicago, Ogden, Milwaukee intersection, yikes!

ardecila May 4, 2011 8:57 AM

If there really is no room for dedicated lanes through the intersection on Damen, then CDOT should put in some "sharrows" (shared-lane markings) and a few bike boxes at each intersection to give cyclists a dedicated place to wait for the light. This wouldn't take any space in the Damen cross-section but would still provide a measure of accommodation for cyclists. We'll see what Gabe Klein can whip up.

Really, really cheesy Bike Box video

denizen467 May 4, 2011 11:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sammyg (Post 5264699)
If they make it anything like the stub of Lincoln Ave. in Lincoln Square, there shouldn't be any problem at all.

I assume you are being sarcastic. For a driver unfamiliar with the configuration, Lincoln Ave there is confusing. Someone coming from the south and looking for, say, 4750 North Lincoln, could lose 20 minutes easily before figuring out it requires a left, a right, a right, and a right, each with traffic lights and/or bus stops, etc., rather than just continuing straight. Not to mention someone looking for 4950 and missing the jog back onto the diagonal street. And I would say Damen/Elston/Fullerton, compared with Lincoln Square, has tons more drivers who are unfamiliar with the D/E/F (who are just passing through to/from the Kennedy for example), in part because it's just another non-descript industrial corridor intersection without landmarks memorable to the average person (people mix up Elston and Clybourn enough as it is).

ardecila May 5, 2011 12:23 AM

The signage at Lincoln is very poorly conceived; Lincoln detours onto Leland and Ainslie. Those streets should be renamed to Lincoln for the one-block stretch that Lincoln detours onto them.

Maintaining continuity for Lincoln is more important than preserving the addresses on the bypassed stub; in Lincoln Square, the stub should literally be named "Lincoln Square". It's the most sensible choice.

Come to think of it, Elston Square would also be a nice designation, and it would help to create an identity for that currently forgettable area around D/E/F.

the urban politician May 5, 2011 4:10 AM

...surprised nobody posted this
 
Chicago-St. Louis fast train gets $186 mil. of Florida funds
By: Paul Merrion May 04, 2011

(Crain's) — Florida’s loss is Illinois’ gain, as the U.S. Department of Transportation awarded an additional $186 million Wednesday to the Chicago-St. Louis high-speed rail project.

ardecila May 5, 2011 7:18 AM

Metra UP-N Retaining Wall Scaping

Before:
http://img850.imageshack.us/img850/7643/rw1i.jpg

After (chain-link added, vines planted)
http://img819.imageshack.us/img819/6704/rw2yq.jpg

denizen467 May 5, 2011 10:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by the urban politician (Post 5266928)
Chicago-St. Louis fast train gets $186 mil. of Florida funds
By: Paul Merrion May 04, 2011

(Crain's) — Florida’s loss is Illinois’ gain, as the U.S. Department of Transportation awarded an additional $186 million Wednesday to the Chicago-St. Louis high-speed rail project.

Whether or not St Louis HSR is going to change anyone's life here, Chicago has for over a century been the country's leader in rail, and any opportunity to leap ahead a couple decades and get the HSR ball rolling in the Chicago area will be a great foundation for the future. For example, it will put HSR in the lingo and experience of the average citizen/taxpayer/voter (from anyone regularly walking through Union Station, to people in greater Joliet and the general metro area, to IL and hopefully WI and IN and MI taxpayers/voters), thereby laying the seeds for support and growth for some future phase. And then, when it comes time to discuss adding a 2nd line (say, Madison, hopefully, finally), the 2nd line will already come with the added benefit of quick onwards connections towards Springfield/St Louis. It just gets exponentially better from there.

Ch.G, Ch.G May 5, 2011 12:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 5267097)
Metra UP-N Retaining Wall Scaping

Before:
http://img850.imageshack.us/img850/7643/rw1i.jpg

After (chain-link added, vines planted)
http://img819.imageshack.us/img819/6704/rw2yq.jpg

I prefer the before?

the urban politician May 5, 2011 2:32 PM

^ Yeah, the after looks cheap.

What the hell?


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