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Mr Downtown Jun 12, 2011 1:19 AM

^What's puzzling to me is that I think of the 14 Jeffery Express as being a bus that people catch near their homes and ride all the way downtown. So the logic of having widely spaced stops for this line escapes me. This is not a line that connects crosstown destinations or rail lines, nor one that people ride for errands a couple of miles away. The time saved by fewer stops will be lost in having to walk further to and from a stop, and most people along the line already know what time they have to catch the bus to be at work on time.

I have to wonder if this is a case like when CDOT decided to put segregated bike lanes on Stony Island south of 67th(!) Why? Well, because the pavement width already existed and no businesses would complain about lack of street parking.

the urban politician Jun 12, 2011 3:15 AM

^ That is going to be an issue with local/express service anywhere.

Obviously, people who live near express stops will be at an advantage. But then, isn't that just the reality of mass transit? In Manhattan I would get on the 1 train at 110th but couldn't catch an express train until 95th, but if the express train wasn't there I would simply ride the local all the way to Times Square because it was still faster than getting off at 95th and waiting 5-6 minutes for an express train.

emathias Jun 12, 2011 3:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 5310433)
...
Even if they don't run revenue service, a connector between the Red and Blue Lines downtown would be invaluable.
...

Block 37 accomplished that.

I'd actually like to see a portal to the Lake Street branch attached to the Blue Line, then you could run the Green Line through the Dearborn-State Street connection under Block 37 and clear up a little Loop timing space.

CTA Gray Line Jun 12, 2011 3:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 5312362)
^What's puzzling to me is that I think of the 14 Jeffery Express as being a bus that people catch near their homes and ride all the way downtown. So the logic of having widely spaced stops for this line escapes me. This is not a line that connects crosstown destinations or rail lines, nor one that people ride for errands a couple of miles away. The time saved by fewer stops will be lost in having to walk further to and from a stop, and most people along the line already know what time they have to catch the bus to be at work on time.

I have to wonder if this is a case like when CDOT decided to put segregated bike lanes on Stony Island south of 67th(!) Why? Well, because the pavement width already existed and no businesses would complain about lack of street parking.

Remember - This is the Organization that persuaded the City Council to approve how much funding for our thriving Block 37 SuperStation?

Logic isn't always a part of their goals (think of all those needy "connected" consultants, and construction companies who must be fed regularly).

Mr Downtown Jun 12, 2011 6:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by orulz (Post 5309325)
Is there a particular reason why there is no station [at Clinton] on the blue line?

In the 1930s, when the line was planned, there was little justification for a stop there. But the bigger problem is that the subway line is on an incline, to go under the river.

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila
I suppose if the Clinton subway was designed properly, it could be linked into the Blue Line using the Lake Street tunnel stubs.

Those stubs are at Canal, and head west from Milwaukee & Canal (only 75 feet or so). I'm not sure how they would help with a Blue Line connection without requiring underpinning one corner of North Western Station's trainshed.

denizen467 Jun 13, 2011 3:33 AM

http://www.suntimes.com/5896583-417/...-a-leg-up.html

Diagonal crossings, fewer right on reds could give pedestrians a leg up
By Fran Spielman
June 12, 2011 8:42PM

Fewer downtown corners where motorists can turn right on red. A hundred dangerous intersections where pedestrians get a three-to-five-second jump before the light for cars turns green.

Intersections where vehicular traffic is stopped for 14 seconds every other light cycle to give pedestrians a chance to cross in every direction, including diagonally.

Those innovative ideas - along with narrower streets and slower speed limits - may soon be coming to downtown Chicago to level a playing field that, newly appointed Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein maintains, has put pedestrians at a "distinct disadvantage."

...

ardecila Jun 13, 2011 4:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 5312869)
Those stubs are at Canal, and head west from Milwaukee & Canal (only 75 feet or so). I'm not sure how they would help with a Blue Line connection without requiring underpinning one corner of North Western Station's trainshed.

Well, you probably would need to do some underpinning. But the Red Line running beneath Clinton could pass over or beneath the Blue Line at Clinton/Milwaukee without a connection, and then a one-block section of track underneath Lake would connect the two tunnels (like a rail version of a quadrant intersection).

Mr Downtown Jun 13, 2011 1:35 PM

^Just for shop moves or for service? I don't see the point of having a train running west under Lake turn south under Clinton.

Nowhereman1280 Jun 13, 2011 2:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by denizen467 (Post 5313243)
http://www.suntimes.com/5896583-417/...-a-leg-up.html

Diagonal crossings, fewer right on reds could give pedestrians a leg up
By Fran Spielman
June 12, 2011 8:42PM

Fewer downtown corners where motorists can turn right on red. A hundred dangerous intersections where pedestrians get a three-to-five-second jump before the light for cars turns green.

Sounds like a horrible idea. As both a pedestrian and occasional motorist, I don't think there is anything better than right turn on red. Pedestrians in downtown Chicago are hardened enough to stand up to a car creeping forward for a right on red. I do it all the time. I make eye contact and give them the "if you drive forward now I'll keep walking anyhow and sue you when you hit me" look and even the cabbies let me pass. I think the pedestrian environment in the loop is at a pretty good equilibrium right now and there is no way to generate huge back ups on the street to make the more timid pedestrians feel warm and fuzzy inside.

Chicago3rd Jun 13, 2011 2:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nowhereman1280 (Post 5313503)
Sounds like a horrible idea. As both a pedestrian and occasional motorist, I don't think there is anything better than right turn on red. Pedestrians in downtown Chicago are hardened enough to stand up to a car creeping forward for a right on red. I do it all the time. I make eye contact and give them the "if you drive forward now I'll keep walking anyhow and sue you when you hit me" look and even the cabbies let me pass. I think the pedestrian environment in the loop is at a pretty good equilibrium right now and there is no way to generate huge back ups on the street to make the more timid pedestrians feel warm and fuzzy inside.

Diagonals are great! Saves time for the pedestrian. Like the fact that maybe someone is finally going to prioritize the pedestrian over the auto in downtown. Have lived in several cities that have them and they are fantastic! Not only does it save time for the pedestrian, but it means less people blocking cars trying to take rights....if I am on the SW corner and want to end up on the NE corner that means I will step into the path for right turning autos 2 times....blocking them from proceeding. A Diagonal crossing means I cross the intersection just once...going from SW to NE directly. Note this also allows the intersection to have "NO" pedestrians crossing on all four cross walks...allowing cars to take rights without needing to wait for pedestrians.

the urban politician Jun 13, 2011 4:07 PM

^ Gotta agree with Chicago3rd on this one.

I think nothing more would contribute to the ongoing evolution back toward a pro-pedestrian environment than these changes being proposed by the new Transportation Commissioner. Not everybody has it in them to give people dirty looks as they cross streets.

I'm especially a fan of pedestrian scrambles. I'd like to see more of those in the Loop and on North Michigan Avenue.

If I could opt for Pedestrian scrambles downtown, here's where I'd like to see them:

Michigan and Randolph
Michigan and Chicago
State and Madison
State and Washington
State and Randolph

Nowhereman1280 Jun 13, 2011 4:56 PM

I don't have anything against a few diagonals, but I do have an issue with limiting right turns on red all over the place. I'd love to see diagonals all over Michigan Ave because it's too wide to safley jaywalk. But even on Michigan Chicago pedestrians are extremely aggressive and will take the right of way even when it's not theirs for the taking (see left turn lanes onto side streets off Michigan). I don't think they need to be protected from cars jostling with them for position to make a right on red. I've kicked a few BMW's and Mercedes in my day that tried to edge me out of the cross walk to make a turn when they don't have the ROW and I know I'm not the only one who doesn't take shit from cars.

emathias Jun 13, 2011 6:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 5313486)
^Just for shop moves or for service? I don't see the point of having a train running west under Lake turn south under Clinton.

Subway Loop.

Chicago Shawn Jun 13, 2011 8:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by denizen467 (Post 5313243)
http://www.suntimes.com/5896583-417/...-a-leg-up.html

Diagonal crossings, fewer right on reds could give pedestrians a leg up
By Fran Spielman
June 12, 2011 8:42PM

Fewer downtown corners where motorists can turn right on red. A hundred dangerous intersections where pedestrians get a three-to-five-second jump before the light for cars turns green.

Intersections where vehicular traffic is stopped for 14 seconds every other light cycle to give pedestrians a chance to cross in every direction, including diagonally.

Those innovative ideas - along with narrower streets and slower speed limits - may soon be coming to downtown Chicago to level a playing field that, newly appointed Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein maintains, has put pedestrians at a "distinct disadvantage."

...

About time. CDOT refused to even look at the concept before the changing of the guard. I'm really loving the new transportation commissioner. I too have a concern about restricting right turns on red, because that will be hell for all the buses in downtown which often cannot pull up to a bus stop or make a turn because of other turning vehicles waiting to turn. This of course can be alleviated with right turn arrows and holding the light for pedestrians for a couple of seconds, ala Washington and State.

Nowhereman1280 Jun 13, 2011 8:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by emathias (Post 5313742)
Subway Loop.

Subway Loop + El structure converted to Elevated Park/walkway/retail mezzanine...

emathias Jun 14, 2011 2:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nowhereman1280 (Post 5313904)
Subway Loop + El structure converted to Elevated Park/walkway/retail mezzanine...

No, subway loop, plus elevated loop continuing as transit asset. A steel structure elevated line hardly makes an appropriate elevated park.

If you want an elevated park in Chicago that actually stands a chance of being interesting and not just a mugger's paradise, then push for the North Main replacement to be a subway, with the conversion of the embankment portions to an elevated park.

ardecila Jun 14, 2011 3:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 5313486)
^Just for shop moves or for service? I don't see the point of having a train running west under Lake turn south under Clinton.

There are all sorts of possibilities, depending on how the junction is designed. A subway loop was mentioned, although that would require a second complex junction at Congress and the removal of the Clinton station. But you could send trains from the North Side into the Dearborn Subway and then out to the West Side. You could take trains from the Dan Ryan branch and send them to the West Side, with the line crossing over itself at Congress/Clinton.

If operated in tandem with the Block 37 connection, you could through-route Dan Ryan to South Main, or Dan Ryan to Midway, or tons of other branch combinations. Since our system doesn't have great opportunities to make transfers between lines, it may be beneficial in the long run to introduce a series of new rail routes linking various combinations of branch lines, and rely heavily on interlining.

denizen467 Jun 18, 2011 11:29 AM

Has anyone seen any boots-on-the-ground evidence of a start to the UP North reconstruction? They better get a move-on - they have only like 8.5 years left (or whatever) in their construction schedule.

ardecila Jun 18, 2011 6:20 PM

No evidence when I rode the UP North 2 weeks ago.

However, they still need to prepare construction drawings for the revised plan. That can take 18 months or more, and Metra only canceled the former plan last August. I imagine that, with the increased neighborhood impact of the new plan, Metra has to work through all the city politics as well.

In other commuter-rail construction news, they've started work on the 130th/Torrence project. The included pedestrian bridge (in red) is awesome. :tup: I'm guessing it's intended to provide pedestrian/bike access from Hegewisch to the Ford plant gates and possibly the Red Line when they build it out to 130th.

http://img832.imageshack.us/img832/9991/130thfull.jpg

ardecila Jun 19, 2011 5:20 AM

LaSalle/Congress Intermodal Center

Great to have a pedestrian connection to LaSalle that doesn't require crossing Congress. The only thing that would make it better is an underground connection to the LaSalle Blue Line mezzanine...

http://img20.imageshack.us/img20/225/0615011750s.jpg
http://img848.imageshack.us/img848/7...13011520as.jpg
http://img828.imageshack.us/img828/9261/0513011521s.jpg
http://img534.imageshack.us/img534/3492/0513011522s.jpg


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