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Abner Mar 12, 2009 7:01 AM

I don't know why anyone would be worried about crime on that route, I'd be a lot more worried about getting hit by a damn truck.

the urban politician Mar 12, 2009 2:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 4135700)
The Alternatives Analysis study is still in progress at the CTA. That study has NOT limited the options down to a rail line yet, meaning that a BRT option is still on the table. This is, in fact, a far cheaper and more likely outcome. The BRT alignment, the last I heard, would run along Ashland and Ogden and it would involve a reconstruction of the Ogden Ave Bridge in some capacity in order to bring buses to the North/Clybourn area.

Also, $8 million is very high for a mere study - you'll note that similar studies for the Red and Orange Lines are only getting $250,000 each. This amount almost seems like the cost of early engineering - actually nailing down a specific alignment, which buildings need to come down, where streets need to be reconfigured, etc.

^ I hope it's not BRT

BVictor1 Mar 12, 2009 2:24 PM

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/l...,6499767.story

'Monster train' fears rising in suburbs

First 2 Canadian National trains roll down suburban line on Tuesday

By Richard Wronski | Tribune reporter
March 11, 2009

http://www.chicagotribune.com/media/...3/45512748.jpgTraffic backs up on Illinois Highway 59 in Barrington as the second Canadian National Railway train of the day passes through the suburb Tuesday. The railroad plans to add four more trains per day on the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway over the coming weeks. (Tribune photo by Stacey Wescott / March 10, 2009)

Amid fears of monster trains running through their communities, residents saw the first two Canadian National Railway trains roll down a suburban line Tuesday, one of them a nearly mile-long freight that will be the first of many.

Although opponents of the CN's purchase of the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway have raised concerns about supersized trains up to 2 miles long, CN described the new arrivals Tuesday as "normal" freight trains.

The trains were "typical for the hundreds of freight trains that move through Chicago every day," said CN spokesman Patrick Waldron.

The railroad would not discuss the lengths, but one of the trains was 130 cars, about one-mile long by the Tribune's count. That is more than twice the average length of trains that ran on the lightly used EJ&E.

Suburban officials have feared trains 1.5 miles in length or longer, enough to close all of the crossings simultaneously in a village such as Barrington. The railroad has said that some communities will see more than 40 trains a day on the EJ&E.

Village President Karen Darch said the three to five EJ&E trains that formerly ran through Barrington often traveled at night. They were not considered a safety hazard and did not pose significant traffic delays, she said.

Now, Darch says, she worries about people who may have become complacent with the rail crossings.

"I have this vision of kids walking to school, not paying attention, not having seen a lot of trains," Darch said. "Now they may be taking risks they shouldn't. That's a huge fear."

The CN trains Tuesday ran between Mundelein and Matteson. The railroad plans to add four more trains per day on the EJ&E over the next three weeks, Waldron said.

Thirty-three Illinois and Indiana communities along the line face a tripling or quadrupling of freight traffic as the CN reroutes its freights around Chicago's congested rail corridor.

The EJ&E line runs 198 miles from Waukegan to Joliet to Gary.

As the trains rolled Tuesday, other suburban officials questioned when CN would begin implementing mandated safety measures, such as cameras to monitor rail-highway crossings.

CN said those plans are in the works and are part of the railroad's three-year process to carry out the federal Surface Transportation Board's decision giving CN approval to buy the EJ&E for $300 million.

More trains mean emergency responders could face more delays, Barrington Fire Chief James Arie said. Every additional minute that cardiac patients experience waiting for treatment cuts their survivability by 10 percent, he said.

"It's the frequency of the trains that's the issue for Barrington," Arie said. "When you have lots of trains and lots of long trains, those are going to pose a challenge for us that affects our operations."

Aurora residents on Tuesday began phoning the city to complain about the additional trains, Mayor Tom Weisner said.

"It's the beginning over a two- or three-year period in which we'll see [rail] traffic quadruple," Weisner said. "So we're just in the early stages of this. … It's the start of some serious problems for our community."

Weisner and Darch are co-chairs of a coalition of suburbs that has been fighting the CN's plans to reroute freights. They have challenged the transportation board's decision in federal court.

So has the CN, which objects to the board's order that it pay the bulk of the cost of constructing two rail overpasses, one in Lynwood and the other in Aurora, which could run $70 million.

CN has reached agreements with 11 communities to create quiet zones, install safety fencing, implement noise mitigation and take other steps.

The Montreal-based railroad said the acquisition will streamline rail operations, reduce congestion and bolster the Chicago region's economy.

Tribune reporter Russell Working contributed to this report.

rwronski@tribune.com

Chicago3rd Mar 12, 2009 4:41 PM

^^
Too bad. The railroads were there first. They mean commerce. They mean jobs. Time for those people to pay for the under and over passes if they want to avoid the train delays. For some reason car owners always think they are gods or something and deserve special treatment and consideration. Just by cutting down their 12 trips to 7-11 down to 6 trips a day they would reduce their chances of being delayed by 50%.

sammyg Mar 12, 2009 5:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chicago3rd (Post 4136226)
^^
Too bad. The railroads were there first.

True - Aurora wouldn't even exist if it wasn't for the railroad.

Are they going to do a story on the people in Blue Island whose lives have been made easier by the re-routing of the trains on the EJ&E?

sammyg Mar 12, 2009 5:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rilestone75 (Post 4134449)
That makes a ton of sense, spend a billion, gain an hour. Does anyone else find that completely unimpressive and disappointing?

I'm sorry, I would really love to see more HSR in our area, but 4 hours between Chi and STL is still too much, I'll fly if that is the case.

A lot of the current work is things like line straightening and grade separation, which would be useful in setting up a true HSR system on that alignment later.

Mr Downtown Mar 12, 2009 5:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sammyg (Post 4136300)
Aurora wouldn't even exist if it wasn't for the railroad.

How do you figure? Aurora was a mill town and industrial center 20 years before the railroad came through.

a chicago bearcat Mar 12, 2009 6:05 PM

might have been referring to it's growth as a suburb. The commuter line hasn't done nearly as much as highways to sprawl out aurora, but I agree with the general argument. Complaining to your town about congestion from trains that are only out where you are because they too are avoiding congestion is just wonderful.

Move to the city where flyovers are being added and at grade crossings are being eliminated. Either way there will be congestion if you're driving unless you choose to not live or work in a metropolitan area. Or if you use grade separated public transit. Boo yah.

aaron38 Mar 12, 2009 6:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chicago3rd (Post 4136226)
^^
Too bad. The railroads were there first.

That's exactly what I tell everyone out here. You can't sprawl across all the farm and industrial land, then choke off Chicago from the frieght lines.
And that "horrible" traffic is nothing. That's Palatine every day, deal with it Barrington.

Quote:

"I have this vision of kids walking to school, not paying attention, not having seen a lot of trains," Darch said. "Now they may be taking risks they shouldn't. That's a huge fear."
#1, How damn stupid are these kids, and where are the parrents?
#2, Barrington has 30 Metra trains a day. What kid out there doesn't understand how a railroad works?

sammyg Mar 12, 2009 6:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 4136365)
How do you figure? Aurora was a mill town and industrial center 20 years before the railroad came through.

You're right - what I meant to say is that Aurora wouldn't have stayed a decent-sized city with an independent existence from Chicago without any railroad access.

Taft Mar 12, 2009 8:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 4136365)
How do you figure? Aurora was a mill town and industrial center 20 years before the railroad came through.

You took that a bit literally, don't you think?

From wikipedia:

Quote:

In 1856, the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad located its railcar construction and repair shops in Aurora to become the town's largest employer until the 1960s.
...
The city was a manufacturing powerhouse until 1974, when the railroad shops closed. Soon many other factories and industrial areas relocated or went out of business.
Seems to me that the "railroads" were a pretty integral part of Aurora's economic development and a huge part of their historical employment. But yes, you are correct that Aurora existed before the railroads. :rolleyes:

lawfin Mar 12, 2009 8:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 4136365)
How do you figure? Aurora was a mill town and industrial center 20 years before the railroad came through.

Yeah, but....in the 1870's aurora's population was 10,000 give or take...it is now probably approaching 180K

The vast, vast majority of Aurora is post RR...approx 95%. I think that is what he meant

whyhuhwhy Mar 12, 2009 9:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aaron38 (Post 4136420)
That's exactly what I tell everyone out here. You can't sprawl across all the farm and industrial land, then choke off Chicago from the frieght lines.
And that "horrible" traffic is nothing. That's Palatine every day, deal with it Barrington.

No excuse not to build an over/underpass now though. Having traffic of all kinds (mass, cars, trains, freight, air, etc.) moving efficiently should be a top priority, especially to a region like this one. Glad the big freight trains are coming through but now it is time to move the cars through efficiently. I am shocked at how many at-grade crossings are in this region where traffic just sits and waits--there is no excuse it's not like underpasses are hugely expensive.

VivaLFuego Mar 12, 2009 11:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by whyhuhwhy (Post 4136768)
It's not like underpasses are hugely expensive.

Eh?

jpIllInoIs Mar 13, 2009 2:29 AM

[QUOTE Are they going to do a story on the people in Blue Island whose lives have been made easier by the re-routing of the trains on the EJ&E?[/QUOTE]

Yeah and up in Central & Northern Lake County where the CN line continues the same heavy load as before the EJE purchase. The railroad has made no promises to build overpasses etc. Those babys' in Barrington fought over the STAR line with the same argument.

the urban politician Mar 13, 2009 2:31 AM

Does anybody know how close we are to finally getting the Englewood Overpass built?

a chicago bearcat Mar 13, 2009 5:50 AM

what do people think of extending orange line not only to Ford City Mall, but west from there to the Toyota center, along the corridor between the neighborhoods to the south and industrial warehouses to the north?

just came to mind while trying to figure out fastest transit to and from fire games

ardecila Mar 13, 2009 3:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aaron38 (Post 4136420)
#1, How damn stupid are these kids, and where are the parrents?
#2, Barrington has 30 Metra trains a day. What kid out there doesn't understand how a railroad works?

AFAIK, usually it's adults that get hit by trains, not kids. Adults think they can hit the gas or run across the tracks before the train gets there, and sometimes their timing is a bit off. Kids usually know to stand back when they hear something loud.

Attrill Mar 13, 2009 3:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 4138064)
AFAIK, usually it's adults that get hit by trains, not kids. Adults think they can hit the gas or run across the tracks before the train gets there, and sometimes their timing is a bit off. Kids usually know to stand back when they hear something loud.

No kidding. Remember this accident from a few years ago? The woman tried to beat the train and ended up killing herself and 2 of her kids.

Chicago Shawn Mar 13, 2009 4:54 PM

Dear uptight Barrington Residents,

http://i410.photobucket.com/albums/p...g?t=1236963014


Hope the train horn is nice and loud.

My only sympathies are with emergency vehicles and increased response time. Of course, a responsible community long spit by two railways would build fire stations and the like, in different areas of the community over the last 100 years.


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