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pip Sep 6, 2007 2:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by whyhuhwhy (Post 3048957)
Maybe you've had a different experience than me. I drive in rush hour every single day, morning and afternoon, on the local roads through the north side to/from Evanston and/or Children's Memorial and/or Northwestern Memorial Streeterville from Belmont. Sometimes I take Lincoln/Western, sometimes Ashland, sometimes Lakeshore, this afternoon home I decided to take Western to Foster to Damen and Damen home. I mix things up because I like to see the different neighborhoods and get bored with the same old route everyday. ALL of these routes have been plenty adequate and have ALWAYS been faster than taking mass transit. I'm sorry but this is just the truth.

BTW last time I decided to take the El from my home in Lakeview to Evanston Memorial it took me one hour and 42 minutes door to door. And I live very close to the Belmont stop. I can't even begin to imagine what type of road/weather conditions would be necessary for it to take me that long to drive up there. It takes me about 30 minutes to drive in the morning and 35 minutes in the afternoon. And owning a car already that's paid for and I can use for many other things besides just commuting, it's even cheaper to boot day-to-day (gas to Evanston or Downtown < CTA fare).



Maybe you are in the wrong thread because no one in here insinuated anything close to getting rid of the CTA. How ludicrous would that be. I said it needs to get shaken up, have more accountability to its customers, and Daley needs to step in and get serious about it (to **IMPROVE** it!) but that is the extent of it.



The money has to come from somewhere. Either way tax everyone and redistribute the monies to pay for services, or we charge people for using them. In my opinion, whenever it is realistic and feasible, we should pay for what we use (i.e., city dwellers should not subsidize suburban highways and suburbanites should not subsidize the 77 Belmont Bus). I know many people live in this world where we just need to form a Robin Hood society and have a public pot of money for everything, and this may work with some things, but that type of system for *everything*, which it sounds like you want, is intrinsically inefficient beacuse it requires bureacratic redistribution, politics and then there is the question of whose money is it really and who is accountable for it? Why do you think the CTA is in so much trouble? Mismanagement of *other* people's money and redestribution of your and my wealth in an inefficient manner while giving employees cushy pension plans and benefits that we continue to pay for with the *majority* of our fares.

But you seem to be reading someone else's message because I even specifically stated that things like education, that you mentioned, is not entirely realistic to self-fund and I specifically stated that I wouldn't cut funding for that nor many other government services so I don't know what you are exactly responding to.

Really!? I take the "el" from Belmont and I don't live next to Belmont to Davis in Evanston then walk to Chicago and it takes me only 40-50 minutes or so door to door.

Traffic in Lakeview is a breeze? Ha!

whyhuhwhy Sep 11, 2007 12:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pip (Post 3049356)
Really!? I take the "el" from Belmont and I don't live next to Belmont to Davis in Evanston then walk to Chicago and it takes me only 40-50 minutes or so door to door.

I didn't say the usual time was 1 hour and 42 minutes, I just said that day it was (and it was the last time I have taken the El to work because that can't happen to me again). It would never, ever take me that long to drive there. Never. I don't care if there is a blizzard.

Unlike some jobs, I can't be 50 minutes late like I was that day. I'm a doctor. It just can't happen. I can't rely on the El, to put it bluntly, and it makes me angry. I have tried many many times which goes to show you I would like to use and support transit.

BTW it takes you 40-50 minutes to get from Belmont to Davis. That's unacceptable. To give you an example, I drive from Belmont to *well past* Davis (to Central!) in Evanston every morning/afternoon during rush hour. I usually choose Ashland or Western, and it takes me a very reliable 25-35 minutes every single day. That is faster than the express train you take to a stop much closer to where I am driving and I don't have to go outside when it is 20 below zero.

Quote:

Traffic in Lakeview is a breeze? Ha!
Never said it was a breeze. I just said it is more than adequate and always faster than taking transit for just about everything I have ever done.

If I had my way, I would take the El every day. I like transit. Don't you think I would rather just lay comatose or read on the train every morning and afternoon rather than be alert and drive? But it is slow and broken and worst, UNRELIABLE and could get me in big trouble from prior experiences--that is the point I'm trying to get across.

I am sincerely happy transit is working for you guys. I really am. Just sharing my 2 cents because some people on here act like roads are the enemy when MOST PEOPLE that live here use them to get to work, and they have a reason.

pip Sep 11, 2007 4:50 AM

Quote:

BTW it takes you 40-50 minutes to get from Belmont to Davis. That's unacceptable.
here is what my post said:

"Really!? I take the "el" from Belmont and I don't live next to Belmont to Davis in Evanston then walk to Chicago and it takes me only 40-50 minutes or so door to door."


My post said "DOOR TO DOOR" which includes walking to and from the stations. I should have also added as I walk from Broadway/Belmont to the Belmont station I notice a line of traffic gridlock. I walk faster than the drivers drive by far and think thank god those driving in non moving traffic days are over for me!

aaron38 Sep 11, 2007 2:52 PM

Okay, so yes it seems silly in the midst of a funding disaster to discuss system expansion plans, but I think the best way for the CTA to survive is for it to grow into a fully interconnected system that people can use for daily life.
And anyway, it's just a thought exercize.

I was looking at all the trafic on Western Ave, and thinking it would be really nice to have a CTA line.
For fun, assume funding magically appears. What do you think community reaction would be to an elevated line above Western Ave, running right down the middle of the street?

It would start at the north at the Brown line. There would be a stations at Irving Park, Belmont and Fullerton. A tie in to the Blue line at Western, then a station at Chicago. Then down to stations at the Green and southern Blue lines, maybe an Ogden Ave station, before ending at the Orange line at 35/Archer.

Personally I would love to have the stations at Western/Belmont and Western/Chicago. That's what got me going on this thought exercize. But is this something that everyone else would want? If the city built it, would people ride it?

VivaLFuego Sep 11, 2007 3:21 PM

^ The only rapid transit that can get built in this country these days is either subway or along freight ROW. Otherwise it will fail the Environmental Impact Study. LRT is feasible but impractically expensive for the relatively low capacity it gives you. More plausibly, keep developing the X49 as a BRT corridor: signal priority, improved stop facilities at the the half-mile streets where the X bus stops, bus lanes/no parking zones, and of course real-time bus information (estimates of arrival time and travel time).

Of course, the X49 is about to get cut on Sunday...

MayorOfChicago Sep 11, 2007 7:33 PM

Surprise!!!!

CTA slammed in federal report
Mismanagement, poor maintenance cited in probe of 2006 derailment, fire
By Jon Hilkevitch | Tribune transportation reporter
1:57 PM CDT, September 11, 2007


WASHINGTON - The Chicago Transit Authority's track-inspection process is "a case study in organizational accidents,'' marked by a management culture that allows falsification of records, deferred maintenance of bad rails and poor safety oversight, a federal report said Tuesday.

The findings issued by the National Transportation Safety Board concluded a yearlong investigation into the CTA train derailment and fire in the Blue Line subway that injured more than 100 passengers July 11, 2006. Inadequate information about the eight-car train's location in the tunnel, between the Clark/Lake and Grand/Milwaukee stations in downtown Chicago, slowed the emergency response to evacuate the approximately 1,000 passengers aboard the evening rush-hour train, the safety board said.

There were also problems with the 55-year-old tunnel's ventilation system in removing smoke caused by electrical arcing between the last car and the 600-volt third rail, the NTSB said.



Investigators determined within days that some wheels on the last car lost contact with the running rails due to the gauge of the track being out of alignment.

But a subsequent examination of documents, interviews with CTA workers and repeated walk-throughs with track inspectors in the Blue Line tunnel turned up severe systemic problems, the safety board said in a blistering report.


More than 80 percent of inspection records were missing for the Blue Line, the board's report noted. CTA tracks are supposed to be inspected twice a week, but one track inspector told a safety board investigator that he had inspected his assigned area only once in five months, the report said.

"We found hundreds of records missing, literally hundreds,'' said Cy Gura, an investigator who served as chairman of the safety board's track, signal and engineering group. "The CTA said the work was done, but there was no record. The [track] gauge problem was not reported and the fixes were not reported.''

In many other instances, investigators found that inspection reports were falsified to indicate that track was inspected when in fact it was not, the report said.

Gura, who accompanied CTA inspectors on their rounds, said they routinely marked off on their reports as having walked and measured track in the entire 6 miles of their territories, even though they actually came up about 1½ miles short by the time their shift ended.

"It looks like a lot of people were looking the other way,'' said safety board member Steven Chealander, referring to CTA management.

Problems uncovered included failures in setting up effective training, track inspection, maintenance and supervisory programs, leading to unsafe track conditions, the board said.

Mud and standing water in the subway tunnel, wet and rotten rail ties, corrosion of rail fasteners and worn or broken screws and tie plates accelerated the track's failure, while CTA inspectors failed to identify the obvious problems, the investigation found.

"The track had clearly been deteriorating for a long time. It did not happen overnight,'' said Bob Chipkevich, director of the safety board's office of railroad, pipeline and hazardous materials investigations. He said the conditions found at the CTA were the worst he has seen at any U.S. transit agency.

CTA officials said they have replaced some top management personnel and initiated changes, including improved inspector training and the use of more sophisticated track-gauge measuring equipment.

But Kitty Higgins, a NTSB board member who accompanied investigators to Chicago after the derailment, said the failures found at the CTA "should really be a wakeup call to transit agencies across the nation.''

"This accident is about the failure to understand and invest in a system of this age that carries thousands and thousands and thousands of people everyday,'' Higgins said.

The investigation also found that CTA employees were required to pull double-duty--working as both track maintainers and track inspectors, creating a conflict of interest.

"The maintainers are the same people doing the inspections. Where is the quality assurance there?'' said safety board member Robert Sumwalt.

A human factors expert at the safety board said the CTA's corporate culture apparently allowed mistakes and other failures to take place and occur repeatedly.

Referring to the management style at the transit agency, Gerald Weeks, chief of the board's human performance and survival factors division, said: "It sounds like a case study in organizational accidents.''

Sumwalt noted that budget pressures at the CTA often meant reduced staffing of maintenance personnel and inspectors.

"The result was that inspectors were often called away from inspections to make repairs,'' Sumwalt said.

The investigation also singled out the Regional Transportation Authority, which has rail safety oversight responsibilities, for failing to closely monitor the CTA, leading to unsafe track conditions continuing to exist, the safety board said. Lax monitoring by the Federal Transit Administration was also cited in the safety board report.

"Clearly there was very minimal oversight going on between the FTA and the state program,'' Chipkevich said.

MayorOfChicago Sep 11, 2007 7:42 PM

Surprise!!!!

CTA slammed in federal report
Mismanagement, poor maintenance cited in probe of 2006 derailment, fire
By Jon Hilkevitch | Tribune transportation reporter
1:57 PM CDT, September 11, 2007


WASHINGTON - The Chicago Transit Authority's track-inspection process is "a case study in organizational accidents,'' marked by a management culture that allows falsification of records, deferred maintenance of bad rails and poor safety oversight, a federal report said Tuesday.

The findings issued by the National Transportation Safety Board concluded a yearlong investigation into the CTA train derailment and fire in the Blue Line subway that injured more than 100 passengers July 11, 2006. Inadequate information about the eight-car train's location in the tunnel, between the Clark/Lake and Grand/Milwaukee stations in downtown Chicago, slowed the emergency response to evacuate the approximately 1,000 passengers aboard the evening rush-hour train, the safety board said.

There were also problems with the 55-year-old tunnel's ventilation system in removing smoke caused by electrical arcing between the last car and the 600-volt third rail, the NTSB said.



Investigators determined within days that some wheels on the last car lost contact with the running rails due to the gauge of the track being out of alignment.

But a subsequent examination of documents, interviews with CTA workers and repeated walk-throughs with track inspectors in the Blue Line tunnel turned up severe systemic problems, the safety board said in a blistering report.


More than 80 percent of inspection records were missing for the Blue Line, the board's report noted. CTA tracks are supposed to be inspected twice a week, but one track inspector told a safety board investigator that he had inspected his assigned area only once in five months, the report said.

"We found hundreds of records missing, literally hundreds,'' said Cy Gura, an investigator who served as chairman of the safety board's track, signal and engineering group. "The CTA said the work was done, but there was no record. The [track] gauge problem was not reported and the fixes were not reported.''

In many other instances, investigators found that inspection reports were falsified to indicate that track was inspected when in fact it was not, the report said.

Gura, who accompanied CTA inspectors on their rounds, said they routinely marked off on their reports as having walked and measured track in the entire 6 miles of their territories, even though they actually came up about 1½ miles short by the time their shift ended.

"It looks like a lot of people were looking the other way,'' said safety board member Steven Chealander, referring to CTA management.

Problems uncovered included failures in setting up effective training, track inspection, maintenance and supervisory programs, leading to unsafe track conditions, the board said.

Mud and standing water in the subway tunnel, wet and rotten rail ties, corrosion of rail fasteners and worn or broken screws and tie plates accelerated the track's failure, while CTA inspectors failed to identify the obvious problems, the investigation found.

"The track had clearly been deteriorating for a long time. It did not happen overnight,'' said Bob Chipkevich, director of the safety board's office of railroad, pipeline and hazardous materials investigations. He said the conditions found at the CTA were the worst he has seen at any U.S. transit agency.

CTA officials said they have replaced some top management personnel and initiated changes, including improved inspector training and the use of more sophisticated track-gauge measuring equipment.

But Kitty Higgins, a NTSB board member who accompanied investigators to Chicago after the derailment, said the failures found at the CTA "should really be a wakeup call to transit agencies across the nation.''

"This accident is about the failure to understand and invest in a system of this age that carries thousands and thousands and thousands of people everyday,'' Higgins said.

The investigation also found that CTA employees were required to pull double-duty--working as both track maintainers and track inspectors, creating a conflict of interest.

"The maintainers are the same people doing the inspections. Where is the quality assurance there?'' said safety board member Robert Sumwalt.

A human factors expert at the safety board said the CTA's corporate culture apparently allowed mistakes and other failures to take place and occur repeatedly.

Referring to the management style at the transit agency, Gerald Weeks, chief of the board's human performance and survival factors division, said: "It sounds like a case study in organizational accidents.''

Sumwalt noted that budget pressures at the CTA often meant reduced staffing of maintenance personnel and inspectors.

"The result was that inspectors were often called away from inspections to make repairs,'' Sumwalt said.

The investigation also singled out the Regional Transportation Authority, which has rail safety oversight responsibilities, for failing to closely monitor the CTA, leading to unsafe track conditions continuing to exist, the safety board said. Lax monitoring by the Federal Transit Administration was also cited in the safety board report.

"Clearly there was very minimal oversight going on between the FTA and the state program,'' Chipkevich said.

Marcu Sep 12, 2007 2:05 AM

Well now that the CTA will have less bus routes less things can go wrong due to a combination of mismanagement/lack of funds/incompotence.

And I guess this is why the CTA pushed so hard to get the transit bill through the legislature before this week. There's no way anything is happening now until there is a major shakedown at the CTA (yes another one). The fact that 80% of the records were "missing" is simply appauling.

BorisMolotov Sep 12, 2007 2:19 AM

so at this point will the state step in and provide the funding?

whyhuhwhy Sep 12, 2007 3:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pip (Post 3050375)
here is what my post said:

"Really!? I take the "el" from Belmont and I don't live next to Belmont to Davis in Evanston then walk to Chicago and it takes me only 40-50 minutes or so door to door."


My post said "DOOR TO DOOR" which includes walking to and from the stations. I should have also added as I walk from Broadway/Belmont to the Belmont station I notice a line of traffic gridlock. I walk faster than the drivers drive by far and think thank god those driving in non moving traffic days are over for me!


Yeah I know what you were saying my response should have been more clear.

50 minutes getting from your place on Broadway/Belmont to Davis/Chicago is unacceptable when it would take you half that time to drive. This goes to show you how broken the CTA has become especially given that most of your travel is dedicated right of way with no stop lights and NO STOPS from Belmont all the way to the very northern border of the city.

You can poke fun at local traffic all you want, but it is local traffic. With the density of the surrounding neighorhoods there is no reason to drive long distances.

As far as commuting, I live a few blocks from you and to give you some perspective, with the horrible traffic that you are glad you don't have to deal with anymore, it takes me 25-35 minutes max during peak rush hour, door-to-door, from Racine/Belmont all the way to Central/Ridge (considerably farther north than your destination). That's a savings of almost one hour each day because I drive. That's unacceptable.

pip Sep 12, 2007 4:39 AM

50 minutes getting from your place on Broadway/Belmont to Davis/Chicago is unacceptable when it would take you half that time to drive.

Well let me see, hmmmmm. First off I don't live on Broadway/Belmont. I commented on my walk from that point and funny how you only quote the max time. Geez.

My friend has no parking and I don't. Street parking is just soooooooo easy to find and so quick!!! lol. Yup parking can be found in seconds and always right in front of my destination- hehe. Still smirking! I guess I could get paid parking at 160/month for my place then also pay for a spot at my friend's place too and then pay again for spots at all my other friends places as we all know parking is so plentiful and traffic is just so light- HAH. Nah, I will take the easy quick cheap way. The Train. Still can't get over how I walk faster than cars drive in Lakeview many time unless it is 3am. Oh and I hear parking is especially cheap in downtown!

the urban politician Sep 12, 2007 2:06 PM

Just In!!!!
 
Hot off the press:

Sept. 12, 2007
CTA, gov's office to meet: station
(AP) — Chicago Transit Authority President Ron Huberman told WFLD-TV that CTA officials plan a morning meeting with representatives from Gov. Rod Blagojevich's office to discuss the funding situation.
http://www.chicagobusiness.com/cgi-bin/news.pl?id=26342

j korzeniowski Sep 12, 2007 9:54 PM

doomsday moved:

link to the trib


just fyi, this is an email i received from my state senator on monday:

September 10, 2007

Dear Neighbor,

Over the past several days, many of you have contacted me to express your concerns and frustration with the failure of the Illinois House to pass the mass transit funding bill, SB 572.



SB 572 failed in the House mainly because the House Republicans who voted against it, want a broader capital program, including more funding for roads, to be part of the transit legislation. To address this issue, the Senate is scheduled to meet next Monday and Tuesday to introduce and vote on a new transit funding bill, similar to SB572, in conjunction with a capital project spending plan which will deal with other transportation and construction projects across the State, including funding for roads. With the inclusion of the capital spending plan, my hope is we will have the requisite number of votes to pass a mass transit legislation and send it to the House for a vote.



I understand and share your concerns and frustrations with the current state of mass transit and the impending service cuts and rate hikes. I fully support mass transit and will do my best in the coming days to find a solution to the crisis.



I hope you find this update informative. Please feel free to contact me should you have further questions on this legislation.



It is my honor to be your voice and represent your values.

Warm regards,



Carol Ronen

State Senator

District 7

whyhuhwhy Sep 12, 2007 11:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pip (Post 3051377)
50 minutes getting from your place on Broadway/Belmont to Davis/Chicago is unacceptable when it would take you half that time to drive.

Well let me see, hmmmmm. First off I don't live on Broadway/Belmont. I commented on my walk from that point and funny how you only quote the max time. Geez.

My friend has no parking and I don't. Street parking is just soooooooo easy to find and so quick!!! lol. Yup parking can be found in seconds and always right in front of my destination- hehe. Still smirking! I guess I could get paid parking at 160/month for my place then also pay for a spot at my friend's place too and then pay again for spots at all my other friends places as we all know parking is so plentiful and traffic is just so light- HAH. Nah, I will take the easy quick cheap way. The Train. Still can't get over how I walk faster than cars drive in Lakeview many time unless it is 3am. Oh and I hear parking is especially cheap in downtown!

We could go back and forth all day, but we would obviously get nowhere, so consider this my last message.

The closest location you gave of where you live was Broadway/Belmont and I'm sorry I couldn't get more specific than that because you didn't provide the details. Would it make all the difference if you are a few blocks from there and I was more specific? I doubt it.

I only quoted 50 minutes because 50 minutes from Lakeview to anywhere in Evanston is unacceptable relative to driving--I don't appreciate that you insinuate I was trying to spin the numbers or misquote you (which, BTW, if you look back at our exchanges you have done multiple times, including misquoting me that I would be happy dismantling the CTA when I said I wanted to fix it and have more accountability, de-funding our education system when I said the opposite, and that traffic in lakeview is a "breeze" when I merely said it was adequate).

Let's just say that I live very close to you if you live anywhere near Broadway and Belmont and it takes me 25 minutes in the morning and 30-35 minutes in the afternoons to commute to a much farther destination than you. And I never have to deal with standing around in 20 degree below zero weather and I will probably never get fired for being literally 50 minutes late the last time I stood at the Belmont stop for 35-40 minutes while an out of service train just stood there blocking northbound traffic. I have taken the CTA to/from Evanston many times in the past. It is very convenient but it is much slower and much less convenient during inclimate weather. And there are times that it is unreliable like I mentioned earlier. With my job I have to be at the hospital at either 9 or 7AM depending on the day, no later. I have driven and taken the CTA enough times to know which is faster and more reliable. I literally save about an entire hour everyday I choose to drive rather than take the CTA. I work Mon-Sat so that's a good extra 6 hours every week I get because I drive.

Why do I even mention this? Because it is unacceptable, especially given that most of my CTA trip is dedicated express right-of-way. Some people need to admit that the CTA is slow, broken, and mismanaged, which should come as no surprise given recent federal inquiries. Luckily it seems most people in here realize this and that something needs to be done about it (and is hopefully being done). This is what it means to be a transit advocate! The federal official who probed the CTA said, and I quote, "the conditions found at the CTA were the worst he has seen at any U.S. transit agency." That should tick you off if you are a true transit advocate. This is our system. And people are screwing it up with YOUR money. The solution to this problem is to fix the CTA and get new people in there who are accountable to each other and to us, not to demonize the automobile.

pip Sep 13, 2007 2:14 AM

Quote:

Let's just say that I live very close to you if you live anywhere near Broadway and Belmont and it takes me 25 minutes in the morning and 30-35 minutes in the afternoons to commute to a much farther destination than you. And I never have to deal with standing around in 20 degree below zero weather and I will probably never get fired for being literally 50 minutes late the last time I stood at the Belmont stop for 35-40 minutes while an out of service train just stood there blocking northbound traffic.
I know what you mean. I remember the time a friend was giving me a ride to work via LSD and there was a car accident. Traffic was backed up for miles. I can't afford to be late to work like that.

Marcu Sep 13, 2007 5:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by whyhuhwhy (Post 3052804)
Why do I even mention this? Because it is unacceptable, especially given that most of my CTA trip is dedicated express right-of-way. Some people need to admit that the CTA is slow, broken, and mismanaged, which should come as no surprise given recent federal inquiries. Luckily it seems most people in here realize this and that something needs to be done about it (and is hopefully being done). This is what it means to be a transit advocate! The federal official who probed the CTA said, and I quote, "the conditions found at the CTA were the worst he has seen at any U.S. transit agency." That should tick you off if you are a true transit advocate. This is our system. And people are screwing it up with YOUR money. The solution to this problem is to fix the CTA and get new people in there who are accountable to each other and to us, not to demonize the automobile.

Well said. It's amazing how many people are willing to cover for the CTA while, as the fed study pointed out, they are risking our lives and wasting our money. Let's just face reality. That is what's best for the CTA.

forumly_chgoman Sep 13, 2007 5:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by whyhuhwhy (Post 3048957)
Maybe you've had a different experience than me. I drive in rush hour every single day, morning and afternoon, on the local roads through the north side to/from Evanston and/or Children's Memorial and/or Northwestern Memorial Streeterville from Belmont. Sometimes I take Lincoln/Western, sometimes Ashland, sometimes Lakeshore, this afternoon home I decided to take Western to Foster to Damen and Damen home. I mix things up because I like to see the different neighborhoods and get bored with the same old route everyday. ALL of these routes have been plenty adequate and have ALWAYS been faster than taking mass transit. I'm sorry but this is just the truth.

BTW last time I decided to take the El from my home in Lakeview to Evanston Memorial it took me one hour and 42 minutes door to door. And I live very close to the Belmont stop. I can't even begin to imagine what type of road/weather conditions would be necessary for it to take me that long to drive up there. It takes me about 30 minutes to drive in the morning and 35 minutes in the afternoon. And owning a car already that's paid for and I can use for many other things besides just commuting, it's even cheaper to boot day-to-day (gas to Evanston or Downtown < CTA fare).



Maybe you are in the wrong thread because no one in here insinuated anything close to getting rid of the CTA. How ludicrous would that be. I said it needs to get shaken up, have more accountability to its customers, and Daley needs to step in and get serious about it (to **IMPROVE** it!) but that is the extent of it.



The money has to come from somewhere. Either way tax everyone and redistribute the monies to pay for services, or we charge people for using them. In my opinion, whenever it is realistic and feasible, we should pay for what we use (i.e., city dwellers should not subsidize suburban highways and suburbanites should not subsidize the 77 Belmont Bus). I know many people live in this world where we just need to form a Robin Hood society and have a public pot of money for everything, and this may work with some things, but that type of system for *everything*, which it sounds like you want, is intrinsically inefficient beacuse it requires bureacratic redistribution, politics and then there is the question of whose money is it really and who is accountable for it? Why do you think the CTA is in so much trouble? Mismanagement of *other* people's money and redestribution of your and my wealth in an inefficient manner while giving employees cushy pension plans and benefits that we continue to pay for with the *majority* of our fares.

But you seem to be reading someone else's message because I even specifically stated that things like education, that you mentioned, is not entirely realistic to self-fund and I specifically stated that I wouldn't cut funding for that nor many other government services so I don't know what you are exactly responding to.

^^^Just curious have you considered the Purple Line....express to Howard from Belmont.....I mean I know there have been slow zones...but 1hr 42 seems extreme.

I live in RP and for me to drive to DT Evanston is 15 minutes easy including finding parking, I also take the redline and it takes about 30 min which includes walk to Morse stop.

Metra is best...3 min walk to station and literally 5-6 minutes to davis...I hav e gone from door to DT evanston in 10 minutes actually i think it was 9

VivaLFuego Sep 13, 2007 2:26 PM

...I'm surprised CTA wasn't ready for the Fed report with the fact that basically everyone in the chain of command responsibly for track maintenance was fired after the derailment incident.

TransitEngr Sep 13, 2007 8:54 PM

3rd Rail Safety????
 
I know this is not PERFECTLY on topic.... but I am working on a new transit station for CDOT. CDOT will finance the "L" station and build it for the CTA... obviously the CTA willl be the operator. Once this is cleared by the Alderman and the Mayor... then I'll tell you guys about it. It's nothing terribly fancy.

Anyway... so I have to surpervise my survey crew when they conduct their Track Level (up on the "L") survey.

I have to undergo the CTA safety training course and I have a few questions.

1. How dangerous is the 600Volt 3rd rail? If one trips and lands their hand (or any exposed skin... face, etc.) on the 3rd rail... does it have the potential to kill?

2. I know I have to wear rubber work boots (obviously no steel toe) to the training and any other time. Does anyone recommend any specific brand or type of boot that's electrically isolated for increased safety?

Thanks,
TransitEngr

Busy Bee Sep 14, 2007 12:28 AM

I'm no expert of electric heavy rail power supplies, but i always thought that you had to slip part of your body underneath it, either touching the underside or the back of the third-rail "hood." I've always thought this because I've seen pictures of people walking and resting on the third-rail. Is there an expert out there? Maybe Viva knows, or drop an email to the fella that runs Chicago-L.org


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