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OhioGuy Apr 24, 2012 3:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nexis4jersey (Post 5677363)
have they considered another north-south subway along the dense lakeshore drive corridor?

I'd love to have a subway line like this, but realistically, the express buses do a decent enough job to getting people to/from the Mag Mile... though continuing travel south along Michigan Avenue and into the loop isn't particularly fast. And if there's a traffic jams on Lake Shore Drive, the convenience of the express buses disappears.

ardecila Apr 24, 2012 3:39 PM

That's pretty good, although I'd run it west down Oak then north up LaSalle with a Red Line transfer at Division.

A lakefront light rail line has also been proposed, which I think is a better use of money - express buses would continue to operate during rush hours, possibly sharing lanes with the light rail.

OhioGuy Apr 24, 2012 4:51 PM

^ Not that I think we'll ever see this subway in our lifetimes (too much money needed for rehabilitation, southward red line extension, orange line extension to Ford City Mall, possible yellow line extension to Old Orchard, and preferably a brown line extension from Kimball to Jefferson Park), I added in your suggestion as option #2 to my map.

emathias Apr 24, 2012 4:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by OhioGuy (Post 5677570)
I'd love to have a subway line like this, but realistically, the express buses do a decent enough job to getting people to/from the Mag Mile... though continuing travel south along Michigan Avenue and into the loop isn't particularly fast. And if there's a traffic jams on Lake Shore Drive, the convenience of the express buses disappears.

West through the Loop should be under Monroe, since the city (supposedly) is maintaining ROW under Monroe for future transit development.

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 5677581)
That's pretty good, although I'd run it west down Oak then north up LaSalle with a Red Line transfer at Division.

A lakefront light rail line has also been proposed, which I think is a better use of money - express buses would continue to operate during rush hours, possibly sharing lanes with the light rail.

Putting lightrail along LSD would be ridiculous. It's 1/4 mile or more from population centers for the majority of the route. Even putting it along Lincoln Park West and Sheridan is pretty one-sided. If we were going to do something along the lakefront neighborhoods, it should be a subway under Clark and, north of Diversy, Broadway. The last semi-serious plan for such a thing had it turning west under Lawrence.

What are the chances of a new subway similar to that? Realistically it's a bit of a long shot due to the costs, but in the last plan that included it, the other aspects of the plan were to extend the Blue Line to O'Hare, which happened, to build a route that became the Orange Line, which happened, and to extend the Red Line south, which is under serious consideration and planning,

The differences between the ones that got done and the ones that didn't are primarily cost. The Orange Line runs mostly on old freight ROW, and the Blue Line extension is in an expressway median. I think there'd be interest if there were funding, but there's not really any cheap way to run a Clark/Broadway subway.

ardecila Apr 24, 2012 7:35 PM

LSD offers plenty of parkland in which to freely build tracks and stations and to stage construction. Virtually all east-west bus lines terminate at LSD or nearby.

The opportunity to build a fully-separated guideway is rare. Running LRT anywhere else would require street running and building heavy rail would be too expensive.

Perhaps a busway with stations might be better for the lakefront, though, as it would upgrade the existing situation.

chicagopcclcar1 Apr 25, 2012 6:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 5674828)
What is this? Is it like the former Bowery L in NY? Man, I wish they had done it this way.

http://images.ookaboo.com/photo/m/Fl..._ca_1898_m.jpg
source

Well I did find out that Chicago might have come close to this scene......The Union Consolidated was chartered to build from Halsted St. connection with the Metropolitan east, across the River, then onto a second connection with the Metropolitan at Market St.; two blocks more to the connection with the Loop "L", (Tower 8) and onto to a connection with the Union Loop Elevated at Van Buren and Wabash (Tower 12). The structure between Canal and Halsted wouild have been one track, in the center of Van Buren with a single support underneath the single track in the midle of Van Buren. Close...as in horseshoes, LOL.

Davd Harrison

emathias Apr 25, 2012 7:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 5677883)
LSD offers plenty of parkland in which to freely build tracks and stations and to stage construction. Virtually all east-west bus lines terminate at LSD or nearby.

The opportunity to build a fully-separated guideway is rare. Running LRT anywhere else would require street running and building heavy rail would be too expensive.

Perhaps a busway with stations might be better for the lakefront, though, as it would upgrade the existing situation.

Anybody who wants to take the bus to a rail line can just as easily take it west to the existing Red/Brown. Any rail built along Lincoln Park should absolutely not, under any circumstances, be focused on bus-to-rail transfers. It should be focused on walk-to-station riders.

Putting rail in the park itself is a bad idea because a) it's a further walk and b) it's stealing parkland and would inevitably result in lawsuits against the city under the lakefront protection laws.

The only non-subway improvement that I think might be worth tolerating - and even then it would likely be challenged in courts - would be to add enforced bus-only lanes on LSD with separate on/off ramps that let buses bypass the lines of cars at the intersections. That would have a real improvement for rush hour ridership times and allow buses to go through the neighborhoods, picking up riders as locals until they hit the Drive and run express downtown. Done right, you might add stops every miles or two for routes that enter the drive further from downtown. But those would be primarily transfer stations, where, for example, someone could ride the 147 from Sheridan and Granville to Fullerton and then transfer to some bus going to DePaul, and on the return trip, transfer back to the 147. With the additional stops, it might make the buses less express, but hopefully the other improvements would offset that additional time cost. A plan like this should probably also include bus-only on/off ramps being added at Diversey and Addison.

If you made certain lanes on Michigan bus-only between Oak and Superior, then made Superior between Michigan and St. Clair bus-only and St. Clair completely bus-only south of Huron, and then connected St. Clair to North Water, you could get buses off most of Michigan Avenue and improve ride times from Water Tower to the Loop while also improving car travel times on Michigan Avenue. At some point, maybe you could even make all the buses on that route trolley-hybrids so they could shut off their diesel engines along the LSD bus lanes and St. Clair - the air would be much better along that whole corridor and you wouldn't have to clutter up Michigan Avenue's sky.

Mr Downtown Apr 25, 2012 7:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chicagopcclcar1 (Post 5678895)
The Union Consolidated was chartered to build from Halsted St. connection with the Metropolitan east

That's usually thought to have been floated as a cynical ploy to get consent from a majority "along the route," giving Yerkes the needed consent for the Van Buren leg of the Loop. He never had any intention of building west of Wells, much less a one-track connection and expensive lift bridge that would duplicate the Met just a block north.

ardecila Apr 25, 2012 11:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by emathias (Post 5678928)
If you made certain lanes on Michigan bus-only between Oak and Superior, then made Superior between Michigan and St. Clair bus-only and St. Clair completely bus-only south of Huron, and then connected St. Clair to North Water, you could get buses off most of Michigan Avenue and improve ride times from Water Tower to the Loop while also improving car travel times on Michigan Avenue. At some point, maybe you could even make all the buses on that route trolley-hybrids so they could shut off their diesel engines along the LSD bus lanes and St. Clair - the air would be much better along that whole corridor and you wouldn't have to clutter up Michigan Avenue's sky.

I've thought about the possibilities for extending Lower Michigan as a bus subway north from Grand to Oak... or you could build a median busway on the surface with a bus-only portal to Lower Michigan between Grand and Ohio.

Having transit service on Michigan, especially at such an incredibly high service level, is a huge catalyst for development and I'm not sure it would have the same effects if it was out-of-sight on St. Clair. Doesn't NMH also use St. Clair for emergency dropoffs?

chicagopcclcar1 Apr 25, 2012 11:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 5678996)
That's usually thought to have been floated as a cynical ploy to get consent from a majority "along the route," giving Yerkes the needed consent for the Van Buren leg of the Loop. He never had any intention of building west of Wells, much less a one-track connection and expensive lift bridge that would duplicate the Met just a block north.

Thanks for the info, but I think I already acknowledged that. Did you read the post on history I put up. I though I acknowledged the "ploy." This post was just to kindan entertain ardeclia and give him a little laugh.

David Harrison

ardecila Apr 26, 2012 2:04 AM

Yeah, the single-track segment seems like a very thinly-veiled ploy. What kind of purpose would such a segment serve, when the Metropolitan L ran in parallel?

It's interesting that the worst fears of the Van Buren landlords turned out to be true. All of us here reflexively dismiss community opposition as baseless NIMBYism, but on Van Buren the construction of the elevated has kept the street in a state of constant blight for over a century.

Rizzo Apr 26, 2012 2:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by OhioGuy (Post 5677570)
I'd love to have a subway line like this, but realistically, the express buses do a decent enough job to getting people to/from the Mag Mile... though continuing travel south along Michigan Avenue and into the loop isn't particularly fast. And if there's a traffic jams on Lake Shore Drive, the convenience of the express buses disappears.

HELL YES I'd love to have a subway station by my place. Your diagram would be a dream come true.

denizen467 Apr 26, 2012 7:44 AM

Dear Transit Nerds near and far, here is some information about an upcoming rail orgy.

CTA's Purple Line viaduct reconstruction project looks ready to install at least 3 viaducts very, very, very soon. At Dempster Street, and also at one crossing north of there, and also at one crossing south of there, entire new steel viaducts have been pre-assembled/constructed a couple dozen yards from their respective crossings. They are sitting there like an armada of spaceships, in the middle of closed streets or supermarket parking lots, just waiting there (and probably telegraphing "All your bridges are belong to us" if we humans would just stop our quarrels and listen, dammit).

For all one could tell, they may well be installing them this weekend, seeing as Friday night to Sunday morning closures are common for major CTA trackwork. Although I wouldn't know whether they have enough work teams to do them all in a single weekend.

I don't know how Union Pacific is handling their North Line viaduct replacements, but these should be kind of dramatic because it seems here they will hoist up the entire viaduct and move it into place.

So there should be some rare video/photo opportunities very soon, including a very last chance to photograph some of those historic 100-year-old (crumbling, and then braced-up) concrete viaducts.

daperpkazoo Apr 26, 2012 10:00 AM

^that's how they did the Rock Island viaducts last summer. I have some photos of the old 33rd street one coming down and the new one going in.


I saw maps with Oakton and Morgan marked on them today for the first time! I'll probably make a trip up to check out Oakton next week sometime.

the urban politician Apr 26, 2012 12:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by denizen467 (Post 5679663)
Dear Transit Nerds near and far, here is some information about an upcoming rail orgy.

CTA's Purple Line viaduct reconstruction project looks ready to install at least 3 viaducts very, very, very soon. At Dempster Street, and also at one crossing north of there, and also at one crossing south of there, entire new steel viaducts have been pre-assembled/constructed a couple dozen yards from their respective crossings. They are sitting there like an armada of spaceships, in the middle of closed streets or supermarket parking lots, just waiting there (and probably telegraphing "All your bridges are belong to us" if we humans would just stop our quarrels and listen, dammit).

For all one could tell, they may well be installing them this weekend, seeing as Friday night to Sunday morning closures are common for major CTA trackwork. Although I wouldn't know whether they have enough work teams to do them all in a single weekend.

I don't know how Union Pacific is handling their North Line viaduct replacements, but these should be kind of dramatic because it seems here they will hoist up the entire viaduct and move it into place.

So there should be some rare video/photo opportunities very soon, including a very last chance to photograph some of those historic 100-year-old (crumbling, and then braced-up) concrete viaducts.

Thanks for interrupting this 'mental masturbation' of a thread where we endlessly speculate about projects that would happen if we were emperors of the Universe, to mention a project that is actually happening.

I wish there was more of such discussion around here

emathias Apr 26, 2012 1:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 5679245)
...
Doesn't NMH also use St. Clair for emergency dropoffs?

No, they use an internal drop-off midway between St. Clair and Fairbanks.

I agree that having the transit right on Michigan has benefits, but it's so slow sometimes. It would be ideal to have a bus-only Lower Michigan that essentially merged with LSD after Oak. I'm guessing that would be terrifically expensive and have difficult engineering as there must be pretty massive amounts of utilities under Michigan.

Beta_Magellan Apr 26, 2012 9:23 PM

I like ardecila’s idea of transit in median-running lanes along Michigan—although Michigan’s about as pedestrian-friendly as a huge, auto-centric boulevard can be, I think the calming effect from taking away a couples lanes of traffic would help make the streetscape a little calmer. Furthermore, there’s ample roadway capacity north of the river, and I suspect a fair amount of the traffic on Michigan just heads onto a side street to get into a parking garage or on-street parking there. Plus, buses are really slow on Michigan during rush hours—briskly walking I’ve outrun buses from Tribune Tower to Chicago Avenue.


Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 5679245)
Having transit service on Michigan, especially at such an incredibly high service level, is a huge catalyst for development and I'm not sure it would have the same effects if it was out-of-sight on St. Clair.

Although I think Michigan’s pretty much set regardless of its transit situation, I recall reading somewhere (maybe in the Fazlur Khan biography written by his daughter) that the Joh Hancock’s design was influenced by the proposed CUTD north-of-the-river line’s siting, which is an interesting tidbit if true.

ardecila Apr 27, 2012 12:29 AM

As I think more about the idea, I'm less enthused about it. The current setup has staggered stations that help assign the vast numbers of people who want to ride a bus to the vast number of bus routes that traverse Michigan. A bus that stops to pick up passengers can be passed by other buses in any number of lanes.

The only way to preserve this level of service would be to create a 4-lane busway or, at the very least, 3 lanes at stations. Switching to consolidated stations would create a problem, because the combined rush-hour frequency of all the bus routes together would quickly stack up buses.

How do other cities accommodate this problem? Seattle has a bus tunnel, but the station platforms are long, they can berth several buses, and there is a passing lane in the center. Busways in other cities tend to be built in lower-scale areas with lots of room to spread out.

sammyg Apr 27, 2012 3:34 PM

The new Oakton Yellow Line station opens this Monday!:banana:

http://www.egovlink.com/public_docum...ter%202012.pdf

MayorOfChicago Apr 27, 2012 7:28 PM

From our alderman:

Alderman Cappleman, 46th Ward Applauds Funding for Sheridan Red Line Station

April 27, 2012 (CHICAGO) - 46th Ward Alderman James Cappleman commends
Senator Durbin, Congresswoman Schakowsky, Congressman Quigley, Governor Quinn, and Mayor Emanuel as they announced today that the Sheridan station is slated to receive approximately $17 million for major renovations.

Alderman Cappleman stated, "The key to any thriving urban neighborhood is safe, clean reliable public transit. With the Sheridan Red Line station renovations, we'll increase public safety, create a more attractable area for economic development, and reduce the number of cars on our crowded streets. Additionally, this plan will bring many needed jobs to Chicago." He added, "The Sheridan Redline Stop is one of the northern stations that has needed improvements for a long time. These renovations will help residents, business owners and Cubs fans alike."

The Sheridan Station renovation is a part of a $1 billion overhaul that includes federal, state and local funding sources for the Red Line from its northern end to the 95th Street station. The complete reconstruction of the Wilson station and upgrades to the Lawrence stop are a part of this investment, which includes several individual projects to improve stations, tracks, viaducts, and power and runs from this year to 2015 that includes federal, state and local funding sources.

The funding breakdown for the $1 billion overhaul is:
$702 million in State funds from the Illinois Jobs Now program
$256 million in federal funds
$44 million in local CTA and City funds


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