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-   -   CHICAGO: Transit Developments (https://skyscraperpage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=101657)

emathias Apr 12, 2014 11:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6536847)
I just don't think this is sustainable politically. We need voters across Chicagoland to understand and support transit, which means all of Chicagoland needs to benefit. Chicago spends so little on transit per capita compared to its peer cities precisely because suburbanites see so little benefit to transit spending - the benefits all accrue to the city.

Like it or not, the suburbs contain the vast majority of Chicagoland's population. That won't change anytime soon and Chicago will ultimately lose out to those peer cities unless it has a unified push with its suburbs.

Chicago will lose to its peer cities if the CITY can't provide EXCELLENT transit service. If it wastes money providing mediocre service to people who don't even use it and choose to live in places where it's inefficient to provide it, then the city will not be able to provide workable transit and people who care about that will choose other cities.

Myself included.

If Chicago wants to become Phoenix, fine. But I won't stay if it chooses that route, and I'm guessing it won't attract nearly as many people who know what good transit and good quality of life really is. For most people globally, being auto-dependent is not their idea of good quality of life. They may choose to own a car, but they don't want it to be their only option and most are smart enough to know that if they choose a single family home with a huge yard and low taxes, they will only be able to choose a car.

There's a reason that software companies in the Bay Area are choosing more and more to be in the city of San Francisco and even ones that aren't are choosing to provide free private busing options for employees who choose to live in San Francisco. It's because a lot of knowledge workers prefer real urban life but even in high-tax Bay Area, you can't provide fast, efficient transit into low-density suburbs.

Having transit-friendly suburban nodes is one thing, but trying to provide walk-to-transit service for the vast majority of suburbanites in the current Chicagoland built environment is ridiculously implausible.

The region needs to recognize that and focus transit-oriented development near existing transit, and double-down on providing better, more comprehensive transit in areas where transit-friendly users are already locating. And, yes, that means more subways in/near the Central Area, and no more extensions further and further into low-density suburbs.

le_brew Apr 13, 2014 7:06 PM

A Modest Transit Proposal: Put The Public In Public Transit
 
here is a series i missed:

By Natasha Julius
http://www.beachwoodreporter.com/pol...oposal_put.php

contains many of the ideas already discussed here, but a few twists
if anyone already posted, i apologize in advance

ardecila Apr 14, 2014 2:21 AM

Harrison Station Rehab

Finally, an entrance canopy that's not some lame historic thing! Right in front of Jones HS, this is a huge improvement. It's probably cheaper, too... looks like it can be built in the field instead of trucked in.

http://i.imgur.com/Svz0wEn.jpg

Tile Patterns:
http://i.imgur.com/dNt89Hd.jpg

Mr Downtown Apr 14, 2014 3:22 AM

I'm pleased to have an alternative to the fake Edwardian stuff they did on State and Dearborn, but I'm not sure this is the answer. There's something just clunky enough about it to make me suspect in-house design at CTA or CDOT.

My biggest concern, as always, is erasing all traces of the rather handsome PWA Moderne of the original subway mezzanines. I wish they could simply be restored rather than having to be tarted up as something else.

Rizzo Apr 14, 2014 5:27 AM

Looking at the opening day photos of the old subway stations, they were quite classy looking. Probably could have still looked good if they were taken care of or not modified.

I'm not a fan of the CTA using tile. It's too much maintenance since it gets tagged so easily. And what about water damage? They should consider using granite rain screens to allow water to drain out behind the face panel. The stone would last forever and it can't easily be damaged from vandalism.

Using standoff glass on that enclosure was smart though as it's easy to maintain.

ardecila Apr 14, 2014 5:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr Downtown (Post 6538125)
I'm pleased to have an alternative to the fake Edwardian stuff they did on State and Dearborn, but I'm not sure this is the answer. There's something just clunky enough about it to make me suspect in-house design at CTA or CDOT.

My biggest concern, as always, is erasing all traces of the rather handsome PWA Moderne of the original subway mezzanines. I wish they could simply be restored rather than having to be tarted up as something else.

Oh, it's obviously in-house design and it is somewhat clunky. But the black ornamental canopies they've been putting in as-of-late are also pretty clunky. I admit the ones on State are pretty elegant, but that's about it.

None of the subway renovations thus far have had great interiors. North/Clybourn comes the closest, mainly because it stayed pretty neutral. The original structural glass/vitrolite interiors were fantastic but not well-suited to changing requirements over the years. CTA's massive assistant booths, turnstiles, and metal fences don't help either... sight lines are terrible in most of the mezzanines.

Mr Downtown Apr 14, 2014 1:54 PM

I don't think anything on the interior at North/Clybourn was actually replaced except the ceiling and lighting. The tile walls were just cleaned or—in some places—painted (!).

Its ironic to mention sightlines, because of the innovative way the original mezzanines were designed with curved walls and obtuse angles precisely so there would be no hiding places.

paytonc Apr 14, 2014 6:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6536847)
I just don't think this is sustainable politically... Like it or not, the suburbs contain the vast majority of Chicagoland's population. That won't change anytime soon and Chicago will ultimately lose out to those peer cities unless it has a unified push with its suburbs.

Not only do the suburbs house most of the people, they also house most of the money. Chicago can't afford to go it alone, and the suburbs will demand greater accountability for where their tax revenues go. The other transit systems pointed to as models (SFMTA is an exception) rely much more heavily on suburban tax revenues than CTA -- e.g., Massachusetts and Minnesota devote a slice of statewide sales tax revenue to metro transit, whereas CTA pretty much only gets a slice of Cook County's tax revenue.

wierdaaron Apr 14, 2014 7:44 PM

Re the Harrison station rehab: http://www.transitchicago.com/harrisonrehab/

That page says the back entrance on Polk won't be redone with the modern red/white design, it'll just be maintained.

Good news to me, the Harrison station is probably the dumpiest underground station in the downtown area -- except maybe for Lasalle blue line. I doubt it'll be turned into a pristine unterstraße oasis, but any improvement would be welcome.

Randomguy34 Apr 14, 2014 8:01 PM

Nothing can ever beat the Lasalle Blue Line station.

Mr Downtown Apr 14, 2014 8:05 PM

^I think you mean Wells & Lake, and I agree it's nice.

http://www.ktransit.com/transit/NAme...-090111-01.jpg

Randomguy34 Apr 14, 2014 10:22 PM

Well I meant more of the interior of the station before they fixed the place a bit. It originally looked like the stereotypical grimy, shady subway station.

Mr Downtown Apr 15, 2014 1:00 PM

OK, now I'm confused. What subway station are you talking about?

Randomguy34 Apr 15, 2014 2:01 PM

I was talking about the Lasalle Blue Line station. I don't know what the Wells/Lake entrance looks like on the inside, maybe it is more shady than Lasalle and I just didn't know it. Sorry for confusing you there.

Via Chicago Apr 15, 2014 3:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wierdaaron (Post 6539132)
Re the Harrison station rehab: http://www.transitchicago.com/harrisonrehab/
.

http://www.transitchicago.com/assets...sonent_tt2.jpg

weird place to put the LED as youre going to have people pausing on the stairs to get updates. seems it would make more sense to place it outside the entrance.

Mr Downtown Apr 15, 2014 7:59 PM

The display is big enough to read while in motion—and all that glass means you don't even have to be head-on. The benefit is to all the people who can avoid running down the stairs fearing they'll miss the train.

wierdaaron Apr 15, 2014 9:16 PM

The other subway stations they've added screens to, there's screens on both sides -- so you could see the approaching times as you come toward the stairs from either direction.

ardecila Apr 15, 2014 10:22 PM

Yeah, that's probably what will happen here. I really hope these screens don't display ads, or people WILL pause on the stairs

Rizzo Apr 15, 2014 11:52 PM

People stand around on the stairs at Chicago Av RL for no reason. The nightmare has come true!

wierdaaron Apr 16, 2014 12:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hayward (Post 6541285)
People stand around on the stairs at Chicago Av RL for no reason. The nightmare has come true!

Oh they have a reason, it just isn't mass transit.

CTA Gray Line Apr 16, 2014 7:42 AM

CTA narrows possible routes for proposed CTA Red Line expansion
 
http://www.suntimes.com/26869554-418...l#.U04zAVVdX9Q

BY FRAN SPIELMAN AND ROSALIND ROSSI Staff Reporters April 15, 2014 10:04PM

The 95th Street station is now the end of the Red Line. That station is due for a major renovation,
and the CTA is looking at routes to extend the Red Line to 130th Street.....

Randomguy34 Apr 16, 2014 2:32 PM

I still wish that the Gold Line on Transit Future featured to branches to show how redundant it is for the Red Line to extend alongside the Bishop Ford. I would much rather prefer it to extend alongside Halsted.

UPChicago Apr 16, 2014 2:35 PM

$2 billion for 5 miles? why not just build it as a subway down Halsted?

Chi-Sky21 Apr 16, 2014 2:58 PM

I would rather spend 2 billion on an Ashland subway or circle line.!

orulz Apr 16, 2014 3:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by UPChicago (Post 6541992)
$2 billion for 5 miles? why not just build it as a subway down Halsted?

No kidding. $2 billion for a 5 mile elevated extension of an existing hline? In an existing right-of-way? That's exorbitant. Everything involving transit in this country has such incomprehensibly bloated costs.

CTA Gray Line Apr 16, 2014 3:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by orulz (Post 6542058)
No kidding. $2 billion for a 5 mile elevated extension of an existing hline? In an existing right-of-way? That's exorbitant. Everything involving transit in this country has such incomprehensibly bloated costs.

NO "Everything" doesn't -- The same thing could be accomplished for a fraction of the cost, and I'm tired of trying.

Y O U All Elect them, and YOU'RE getting just what YOU deserve.......

ChickeNES Apr 16, 2014 7:44 PM

CTA to redo 4 North Side Red Line stations

Jon Hilkevitch - Tribune - April 16, 2014

Quote:

The CTA will move ahead as early as 2017 with the total reconstruction of four stations and the replacement of deteriorating track and elevated structure on the Red Line north branch, at an estimated cost of $1.13 billion, transit officials announced Wednesday.

The stations, part of an overall plan to renew the north Red Line and Purple Line, are at Lawrence, Argyle, Berwyn and Bryn Mawr. All four stations will be equipped with elevators.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/l...,6118418.story

Chi-Sky21 Apr 16, 2014 7:50 PM

^^^^^^ Awesome news! I just wonder why they never want to somewhat enclose these platforms...its not like we live in a warm weather city, some sort of wind break would be nice! Albeit i am only going off the renders.

BVictor1 Apr 16, 2014 8:24 PM

Time to re-extend the green line to Stony Island.

the urban politician Apr 16, 2014 8:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BVictor1 (Post 6542654)
Time to re-extend the green line to Stony Island.

^ Good idea, lets spend $40 million and 5 years planning that

MayorOfChicago Apr 16, 2014 8:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ChickeNES (Post 6542570)
CTA to redo 4 North Side Red Line stations

Jon Hilkevitch - Tribune - April 16, 2014




http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/l...,6118418.story

I thought I was going crazy - one of their headline articles up right now said they're going to spend $52 million to do upgrades and work to keep 7 Red Line stations in working order. It will involve up to 40 day rolling closures for each station from Lawrence northward.

I kept thinking - didn't they just do this a few years ago!?!? Finally I went and re-read....and the Tribune posted....as a headliner article on their website....an article that's well over 2 years old.

Talk about confusing people.

Randomguy34 Apr 16, 2014 9:54 PM

So does this mean that the RPM project will be done in phases and once a phase receives funding, they will start construction for it immediately?

OhioGuy Apr 16, 2014 11:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BVictor1 (Post 6542654)
Time to re-extend the green line to Stony Island.

Time to rebuild the Humboldt Park branch! :yes:

the urban politician Apr 17, 2014 12:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Randomguy34 (Post 6542812)
So does this mean that the RPM project will be done in phases and once a phase receives funding, they will start construction for it immediately?

No, what will happen instead is that we will keep paying for more studies, talk about it, have some arguments, then put it in the backburner for 2 years. Somebody else will then decide it is worth pursuing, pay millions for more studies, then do an environmental assessment, perhaps test to make sure that it is safe for birds, then somebody will complain that too many birds will die. Then it will be revived a few years later but, since the earlier studies have "expired", we need new consultants for newer studies.

We will then go on a field trip to Germany (paid by the taxpayers) to see how such things run in other countries, pay for more studies and plans, have some lengthy discussions about soil erosion, traffic impacts, and what percentage minority contractors to use, and then after about 10 years abandon the project altogether.

Transit expansion in Chicago is a joke. A shitty, annoying, worthless, pitiful, miserable, expensive joke. It is a scam designed to pay consultants. Period. End of story. Just use & renovate what we already have (something that at least Rahm seems to be halfway decent at) because we ain't expanding the transit system--EVER.

LouisVanDerWright Apr 17, 2014 1:22 PM

Should be titled "CTA moves to studying doing something", but at least they are putting a Brownline flyover on the radar. It also irks me that they used "el" instead of "L", but I digress:

CTA Moves to Unsnarl North Side el Tracks

The Chicago Transit Authority is announcing tentative plans today to proceed with a long-awaited fix to unsnarl a mid-North Side rail junction that ties up hundreds of Red, Brown and Purple line trains a day.

The agency, as part of a broader $1.3 billion program to rebuild some track and stations, also wants to build a build a bridge or bypass for the Brown Line where it crosses the Red and Purple line over Clark Street a couple of blocks south of Wrigley Field, sources familiar with the announcement are saying.

The work is predicated on a full engineering study of the plan and obtaining a source for the estimated $50 million to $75 million needed. But assuming that occurs, the project is likely to finally get a green light decades after CTA first began considering it.

Roughly 850 trains pass through the crossing every work day, with southbound Red and Purple trains stopping every time a northbound Brown Line train needs to move through the so-called Clark Junction. Northbound Red and Purple trains also have to stop and wait if a northbound Brown line train is crossing in front of them.

More Here: http://www.chicagobusiness.com/artic...side-el-tracks

UPChicago Apr 17, 2014 2:14 PM

The subway option for this project was $2 billion yet they go with this inferior option. More windswept stations, more element exposed tracks.

Jibba Apr 17, 2014 3:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LouisVanDerWright (Post 6543449)
Should be titled "CTA moves to studying doing something", but at least they are putting a Brownline flyover on the radar. It also irks me that they used "el" instead of "L", but I digress:

CTA Moves to Unsnarl North Side el Tracks

The DNAinfo article on the same topic said that the CTA needs 16 buildings for the flyover. That stings. It's necessary, but it stings.

MayorOfChicago Apr 17, 2014 4:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jibba (Post 6543693)
The DNAinfo article on the same topic said that the CTA needs 16 buildings for the flyover. That stings. It's necessary, but it stings.

Yeah, I don't even want to think about it. I love that area because they would sandwich those old buildings around the tracks. It's going to look void, open and industrialish after they're done tearing everything down. They don't put the buildings up that close to the tracks anymore, I'm expecting a lot more vacant areas around the trains. They'll probably call them "parks" to sell it better.

UPChicago Apr 17, 2014 4:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jibba (Post 6543693)
The DNAinfo article on the same topic said that the CTA needs 16 buildings for the flyover. That stings. It's necessary, but it stings.

Even more reason the subway option should have happened instead.....

Justin_Chicago Apr 17, 2014 4:59 PM

Just wait until the CTA sends out notices to all of the buildings that need to be purchased to straighten the Sheridan Redline stop. I wish they can extend the subway from North Avenue to Wilson. Think of all the new potential development when they remove the existing tracks? I am sure the surrounding property values would increase too.

When I attended an informational meeting years ago, most of the attendees complained about "potential cost overruns" with pursuing a subway option. Yes, there is risk, but run the numbers first. That is why financial models have sensitivity analysis.

LouisVanDerWright Apr 17, 2014 5:15 PM

Renderings via Crains:

Flyover:

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/apps/...20140417120501

New Platforms for the 4 rebuilt stations:

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/apps/...20140417120501

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/artic...side-el-tracks

ardecila Apr 17, 2014 6:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MayorOfChicago (Post 6543727)
Yeah, I don't even want to think about it. I love that area because they would sandwich those old buildings around the tracks. It's going to look void, open and industrialish after they're done tearing everything down. They don't put the buildings up that close to the tracks anymore, I'm expecting a lot more vacant areas around the trains. They'll probably call them "parks" to sell it better.

The renderings show conceptual development on those sites.

Also, as I've pointed out in the past, CTA doesn't always tear down buildings when it acquires them. This building at Armitage was acquired, shaved down in size, and the facade re-assembled. This stripmall at Diversey was acquired and shaved down. I expect CTA will do similar things for the flyover project. Some buildings have rear wings that will be demolished, while a few buildings might have to be torn down completely (like that condo building at School/Wilton. The effect on the street will be minimal.

joeg1985 Apr 17, 2014 6:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6543952)
The renderings show conceptual development on those sites.

Also, as I've pointed out in the past, CTA doesn't always tear down buildings when it acquires them. This building at Armitage was acquired, shaved down in size, and the facade re-assembled. This stripmall at Diversey was acquired and shaved down. I expect CTA will do similar things for the flyover project. Some buildings have rear wings that will be demolished, while a few buildings might have to be torn down completely (like that condo building at School/Wilton. The effect on the street will be minimal.

Oh cool! I had no idea. There is hope for the area yet. I too was really worried when I saw that there would be 16 buildings acquired. That has the potential to completely destroy the area. Let's hope they stick to work like what Ardecila pointed out.

Via Chicago Apr 17, 2014 7:17 PM

Well, the Crains article pretty specifically says "demolish"

Quote:

The junction project will be much more expensive than I expected, coming in at an estimated $320 million, officials said. It would be two blocks long, running from the existing tracks over the el structure to almost Sheffield Avenue and would require the demolition of 16 mostly residential buildings.

Via Chicago Apr 17, 2014 7:21 PM

Also, does anyone know what the status is of the Brown Line rehab south of Armitage/north of Merch Mart? I havent really seen any activity to indicate anything of real substance is happening...other than workers constantly walking up and down the tracks. Is there a timeline for when this is supposed to be completed?

OrdoSeclorum Apr 17, 2014 7:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by the urban politician (Post 6543406)

Transit expansion in Chicago is a joke. A shitty, annoying, worthless, pitiful, miserable, expensive joke. It is a scam designed to pay consultants. Period. End of story. Just use & renovate what we already have (something that at least Rahm seems to be halfway decent at) because we ain't expanding the transit system--EVER.

I don't know, TuP. First, I think improving frequency is much more important than expansion. Not to say that I don't want expansion.

But I don't think it's too hard to see a near-term future where we don't have the pension issue hanging over our heads. Once that budget is no longer in crisis, adding the $500M (!) per year in Casino revenue--that's just the city's portion--goes a long way. If just one third of that was used to finance infrastructure bonds, my back-of-the-envelope calculation means we could afford $25B in transit infrastructure without any federal investment. That's everything on the wish list and a whole lot more. I'd be surprised if we don't see some big plans hatching in five years or so.

CTA Gray Line Apr 17, 2014 7:59 PM

CTA plans L overpass at Belmont to eliminate bottleneck
 
http://www.suntimes.com/26902197-761...l#.U1AxkVVdX9Q


BY ROSALIND ROSSI Transportation Reporter

April 17, 2014 11:12AM

The CTA plans on building a bypass north of the Belmont station to eliminate delays where the
Red, Purple, and Brown lines intersect and trains must stand and wait for other trains to pass......

ardecila Apr 17, 2014 8:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Via Chicago (Post 6544061)
Well, the Crains article pretty specifically says "demolish"

The CTA doesn't even know what will happen. Look at the Wilson project... columns were being shifted around until the last minute to appease local residents and business owners.

We need to wait for CTA to do a detailed engineering study before they will know what gets torn down. 16 properties will be acquired but that doesn't mean the buildings on them get town down.

wierdaaron Apr 17, 2014 8:21 PM

I'm kind of confused where this flyover would actually go, could someone who understands draw a line on a map or something?

OrdoSeclorum Apr 17, 2014 9:01 PM

This Curbed article has a decent schematic:
http://chicago.curbed.com/archives/2...roject-yet.php

If the map is accurate, it appears some buildings just east and north of the Red Line at the split will need to go and some building north of the brown line just after the split. I checked streetview and it doesn't look like anything we would miss TOO much is in the path, but it's hard to know for sure.


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