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the urban politician Jul 13, 2007 3:51 PM

^ Wow, Huberman's nailed down in 10 weeks what is most important to the CTA system; what the hell was Kruesi doing all those years?

We must watch this Huberman fellow. If he turns out to be halfway decent perhaps we can see a potential new mayor in the post-Daley era?

ardecila Jul 15, 2007 8:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lukecuj (Post 2950657)
The city is subsidizing the CTA, they're just doing it through modernizing the drab 1940 era stations....

Fine with me; the city and its residents SHOULD be in control of downtown Chicago's transit stations, not suburbanites out in Plainfield who couldn't give a damn, and have never set foot in a CTA station.

Legally, the stations are the property of the city, so station rehabs are up to them. CTA just uses them. Hopefully, the city can get enough money together for the construction of Cermak, Morgan, and Orleans stations.

Quote:

Originally Posted by the urban politician (Post 2950440)
^ Wow, Huberman's nailed down in 10 weeks what is most important to the CTA system; what the hell was Kruesi doing all those years?

The better question is, what was all that money going to before?

nomarandlee Jul 17, 2007 8:32 AM

John Norquist will be appearing on Chicago Tonight (on Tues. night) for anyone who wants to watch. It sounded as if he was going to expand on his theme of his Sun-Times article that in what Chicago lacks in transit compared to other major world cities.


Those new entrance that Lukecuj showed look fantastic and class by the way. Gotta start somewhere I guess.

Is there any chance that more of the Blune Line will get em?

Busy Bee Jul 17, 2007 3:57 PM

In my opinion, subway entrances look great when done in a modern or traditional style, as long as they are done well and with appropriate scale and quality materials. These are from http://chicago-l.org/ of the Jackson Blue Line station:


http://chicago-l.org/stations/images...vanburen05.jpg

http://chicago-l.org/stations/images...vanburen06.jpg

http://chicago-l.org/stations/images...vanburen07.jpg

I think I actually like these a bit more than the State Street kiosks.

ardecila Jul 17, 2007 9:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nomarandlee (Post 2955589)
Is there any chance that more of the Blune Line will get em?

The downtown stations - I dunno. Clark/Lake's entrance is from the State of Illinois Building; that's not changing or getting rehabbed. Randolph's entrance will (probably) be incorporated into Block 37, with the old stairs removed.

Monroe will probably get the new entrances, and I dunno about LaSalle or Clinton... they're not high-profile or high-ridership stations. These two, along with the Blue Line stations out in the neighborhoods, will probably be cleaned/painted, but I don't see overhauls coming for them.

Mr Downtown Jul 17, 2007 10:35 PM

I wish the Lake/Wells entrance had become the standard new subway kiosk. It bothers me to put 1890s entrances on a 1940s subway.

honte Jul 17, 2007 11:32 PM

^ Agreed 100%. That is a very classy kiosk too. The Daley administration seems to get it some times; other times, not. Every time I see this stuff, I just cringe at lost opportunities.

Also, make sure you notice the new, ultra-passé street lights next to the Trump Tower along Wabash.

Busy Bee Jul 18, 2007 4:20 AM

These take the cake. Designed by Lord Norman Foster, Bilbao, Spain:


http://www.bluffton.edu/~sullivanm/s...metro/0015.jpg

http://www.bluffton.edu/~sullivanm/s...metro/0079.jpg

http://static.flickr.com/91/236388781_e00e6a691c_o.jpg

nomarandlee Jul 18, 2007 4:46 AM

I dare say I prefer the new Jackson entrance design in some respects to that Foster design.

The new ceiling tiling looks nice at the Jackson station and all around its greatly improved but the granite flooring still looks pretty cheap and unattrcative and the I-beams spartan even with a fresh coat of paint.

ardecila Jul 18, 2007 6:40 AM

Spartan is fine; it's a subway, not a palace. It was also designed with a minimalist aesthetic.

I hope the subway portion of the Circle Line will include some significant architecture at its stations. Places like London, Hong Kong, and (closer to home) Vancouver all feature groundbreaking modern designs on their new rapid-transit lines.

j korzeniowski Jul 18, 2007 9:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 2957663)
Spartan is fine; it's a subway, not a palace. It was also designed with a minimalist aesthetic.

I hope the subway portion of the Circle Line will include some significant architecture at its stations. Places like London, Hong Kong, and (closer to home) Vancouver all feature groundbreaking modern designs on their new rapid-transit lines.

all this talk about the cta's new stations and potential stations is nice, but i am still worried about the fare hikes. is everybody confident springfield will come through with the cash?

VivaLFuego Jul 18, 2007 10:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by j korzeniowski (Post 2958915)
all this talk about the cta's new stations and potential stations is nice, but i am still worried about the fare hikes. is everybody confident springfield will come through with the cash?

Not at all; the only issue they seem to care about in Springfield is working out a deal so that ComEd customers (i.e. Chicago-area) can subsidize Ameren customers (i.e. everyone else downstate) through electric rate relief, which just means price controls and reduced quality of electric service for everybody. Hey brainiacs, maybe this is a sign of the relative inefficiency of having huge homes in the middle of nowhere, requiring very hefty infrastructure to transport power to the destination? Naw, let's just subsidize bad habits....

In other words, they're down in Springfield wasting everyone's time.

I have a gut feeling the cuts will go through, and within a few days a band-aid will be found to go back to the status quo for a couple months, which is to say, the worst of all worlds: CTA will have laid off staff (some of which won't return), lost many riders, downtown will have been decimated for a week since workers couldn't get there (significant economic hit for the region), and it will be only a bandaid fix without a long term solution, so we're in the same position (except a bit worse, due to inflation) next year.

Having the nation's worst governor doesn't help much either, since right out of the gate this spring he made sure it would be an antagonistic, unproductive legislative session.

j korzeniowski Jul 19, 2007 3:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by VivaLFuego (Post 2958990)
Not at all; the only issue they seem to care about in Springfield is working out a deal so that ComEd customers (i.e. Chicago-area) can subsidize Ameren customers (i.e. everyone else downstate) through electric rate relief, which just means price controls and reduced quality of electric service for everybody. Hey brainiacs, maybe this is a sign of the relative inefficiency of having huge homes in the middle of nowhere, requiring very hefty infrastructure to transport power to the destination? Naw, let's just subsidize bad habits....

In other words, they're down in Springfield wasting everyone's time.

I have a gut feeling the cuts will go through, and within a few days a band-aid will be found to go back to the status quo for a couple months, which is to say, the worst of all worlds: CTA will have laid off staff (some of which won't return), lost many riders, downtown will have been decimated for a week since workers couldn't get there (significant economic hit for the region), and it will be only a bandaid fix without a long term solution, so we're in the same position (except a bit worse, due to inflation) next year.

Having the nation's worst governor doesn't help much either, since right out of the gate this spring he made sure it would be an antagonistic, unproductive legislative session.

ugh ... you're just the person i wanted to hear from, with just the opposite of what i wanted to hear.

VivaLFuego Jul 19, 2007 3:55 PM

In happier news, CTA Pres Huberman's blue line plan:
http://www.transitchicago.com/news/m...d/blueszep.pdf

Marcu Jul 19, 2007 4:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by VivaLFuego (Post 2960414)
Not at all; the only issue they seem to care about in Springfield is working out a deal so that ComEd customers (i.e. Chicago-area) can subsidize Ameren customers (i.e. everyone else downstate) through electric rate relief, which just means price controls and reduced quality of electric service for everybody. Hey brainiacs, maybe this is a sign of the relative inefficiency of having huge homes in the middle of nowhere, requiring very hefty infrastructure to transport power to the destination? Naw, let's just subsidize bad habits....

The entire debate shows the true priorities of our politicians - kicking a few bucks back to ther constituents to win support instead of actually getting anything done. I'd like to think they underestimate the intelligence of an average Illinois voter, but an avergae Illinois voter supported Blagojevich twice so I'm not so sure.

I wouldn't go as far as saying the comed/ameren plan means additional price controls. First, price controls have always been there. Power companies are natural monopolies and such are not outside the pervue of price regulation.

ardecila Jul 19, 2007 4:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by VivaLFuego (Post 2960414)
In happier news, CTA Pres Huberman's blue line plan:
http://www.transitchicago.com/news/m...d/blueszep.pdf

Huberman's plan for the Blue Line is great.... I like how quickly they made the decision to do this, but still, I have to wonder what the money was going to before. Are they slowing down the Brown Line work?

ArteVandelay Jul 19, 2007 4:48 PM

To say Huberman has put an emphasis on eliminating these Blue Line slow zones is an understatement - since he took over we went from replacing about 5000 ties in the subway by October to doing nearly twice as many in less time. I didn't mind Kruesi at the time, but in retrospect there is no denying that these tracks deteriorated dangerously under his watch, and never really had a good plan to rapidly bring all the Blue Line back up to a proper state of mantainence quickly. Blue Line ridership finally started dropping because of it.

Its going to be a busy year for track maintainence, and especially on weekends passangers are going to be very inconvenienced, but there finally is relief in sight. By mid september trains should be flying from Division to Grand.

ArteVandelay Jul 19, 2007 4:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 2960473)
Are they slowing down the Brown Line work?

Unrelated to Brown Line work - different contractors and the money is coming from different places for each project.

nomarandlee Jul 24, 2007 6:08 AM

Chicago might support tax for CTA
 
http://newsblogs.chicagotribune.com/...o-might-s.html

Originally posted: July 23, 2007

Chicago might support tax for CTA
Posted by Ray Long at 7:55 p.m.

State lawmakers are looking to the Daley administration to see if local officials would put in place a real estate transfer tax that would help underwrite the Chicago Transit Authority. Mass transit advocates hope such a move could generate additional legislative support in the Capitol.

"We're talking about the possibility of a city-imposed real estate transfer tax," said Rep. Julie Hamos (D-Evanston), chair of the House Mass Transit Committee. She said that Mayor Richard Daley is keeping an "open mind."


The real estate transfer tax has been a piece of the legislative package pushed by transit officials hoping to stave off fare hikes and cuts in bus routes, but the proposed difference is the city would make the tough vote on the transfer tax instead of state lawmakers imposing it.

It is "something we are looking into and have had general discussions about," said Jodi Kawada, Daley's deputy press secretary. But she would not say whether Daley has given the go-ahead.

Hamos said giving the city the responsibility for the real estate transfer tax "would show a real partnership between the state legislature and the city." She said a city-imposed tax also would go over better with suburbanites who don't want to feel that they are bailing out the poorly funded CTA pension system.

"I think he's come a long way," Hamos said of Daley. "I think he understands the seriousness of this situation and is willing to play this partnership role. I think that will go a long way toward getting support for the legislation."

Daley initially had balked at the idea of such a real estate transfer tax--worth $42 million--being imposed on Chicago by the state.

Currently, state law says no municipality, including home-rule cities like Chicago, can impose or raise real estate transfer taxes without a referendum, but the legislation would provide an exception, possibly a one-time window for the city to take action, Hamos said.

If Chicago were willing to take up the local real estate transfer tax itself, then that could bring aboard more legislative support from lawmakers who have not committed to voting in favor of an overall funding package, Hamos said.

"There were some legislators down here who really did say to us, 'Why are we doing all of the heavy work here?'" Hamos said.

She said she hoped a bill could be ready for a vote within days, but the trick now is to gather enough support to win a supermajority vote in both houses because extra votes are needed once the legislature goes into overtime.

Blagojevich has vowed to veto a legislative package that contained a quarter-cent sales tax increase in the Chicago region as well as the real estate transfer tax and another quarter-cent tax for transit and transportation projects in the five collar counties. To override a veto, the legislature would need the same three-fifths margin of votes as are required for a supermajority vote.

Hamos said she said she hoped to get Downstate lawmakers to support the proposal with a pledge to phase in more mass transit support for their regions in the future.

Tribune staff reporter Gary Washburn contributed to this report.

Chicago3rd Jul 24, 2007 11:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nomarandlee (Post 2968844)
http://newsblogs.chicagotribune.com/...o-might-s.html

Originally posted: July 23, 2007

Chicago might support tax for CTA
Posted by Ray Long at 7:55 p.m.

State lawmakers are looking to the Daley administration to see if local officials would put in place a real estate transfer tax that would help underwrite the Chicago Transit Authority. Mass transit advocates hope such a move could generate additional legislative support in the Capitol.

"We're talking about the possibility of a city-imposed real estate transfer tax," said Rep. Julie Hamos (D-Evanston), chair of the House Mass Transit Committee. She said that Mayor Richard Daley is keeping an "open mind."


The real estate transfer tax has been a piece of the legislative package pushed by transit officials hoping to stave off fare hikes and cuts in bus routes, but the proposed difference is the city would make the tough vote on the transfer tax instead of state lawmakers imposing it.

It is "something we are looking into and have had general discussions about," said Jodi Kawada, Daley's deputy press secretary. But she would not say whether Daley has given the go-ahead.

Hamos said giving the city the responsibility for the real estate transfer tax "would show a real partnership between the state legislature and the city." She said a city-imposed tax also would go over better with suburbanites who don't want to feel that they are bailing out the poorly funded CTA pension system.

"I think he's come a long way," Hamos said of Daley. "I think he understands the seriousness of this situation and is willing to play this partnership role. I think that will go a long way toward getting support for the legislation."

Daley initially had balked at the idea of such a real estate transfer tax--worth $42 million--being imposed on Chicago by the state.

Currently, state law says no municipality, including home-rule cities like Chicago, can impose or raise real estate transfer taxes without a referendum, but the legislation would provide an exception, possibly a one-time window for the city to take action, Hamos said.

If Chicago were willing to take up the local real estate transfer tax itself, then that could bring aboard more legislative support from lawmakers who have not committed to voting in favor of an overall funding package, Hamos said.

"There were some legislators down here who really did say to us, 'Why are we doing all of the heavy work here?'" Hamos said.

She said she hoped a bill could be ready for a vote within days, but the trick now is to gather enough support to win a supermajority vote in both houses because extra votes are needed once the legislature goes into overtime.

Blagojevich has vowed to veto a legislative package that contained a quarter-cent sales tax increase in the Chicago region as well as the real estate transfer tax and another quarter-cent tax for transit and transportation projects in the five collar counties. To override a veto, the legislature would need the same three-fifths margin of votes as are required for a supermajority vote.

Hamos said she said she hoped to get Downstate lawmakers to support the proposal with a pledge to phase in more mass transit support for their regions in the future.

Tribune staff reporter Gary Washburn contributed to this report.

My questions:

1st How much does the Chicago Metro pay in gas taxes verses the rest of the state of Illinois?
2nd How much per dollar do we get back?

I have heard we get less than 100% back and that we subsidize rural Illinois. That must stop. Then I would go for something like the transfer tax, BUT it would also charge those who live outside the political boundary that is being taxed to pay more for public transportation when visiting. If they are out of state they pay what the metro pays, but if they live in any rural areas they pay more. Same thing with our toll ways. If they are licensed outside the Toll areas of Chicagoland then they need to pay the higher toll. They are causing congestion and lifestyle issues.


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