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  #13101  
Old Posted Jul 27, 2016, 4:10 PM
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^ Well that came out of nowhere. Garfield's only 16 years old, and it was already cleaned/repainted top to bottom when it was used as a transfer point during the Red Line overhaul. It doesn't need another renovation, it needs development around it.

Renovating this station is far from being the most pressing need on the CTA system, or even on the South Side.

Seems like this is mostly cosmetic upgrades to the elevator towers and canopies, plus a big overhaul to the streetscape and the renovation of the historic stationhouse. Not a terrible idea... but you could also spend $50 million and subsidize a large Wilson Yards-esque mixed-use complex here on all the vacant land, and it would go a lot farther towards building this area up.
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  #13102  
Old Posted Jul 27, 2016, 4:30 PM
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The Obama Presidential Library is coming to Washington Park, I'm calling it...
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  #13103  
Old Posted Jul 27, 2016, 5:08 PM
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The Obama Presidential Library is coming to Washington Park, I'm calling it...
That's what I figured as well when I saw the news. It's odd that city leaders and Durbin would want a Green Line station to be rehabbed for that much money. I use the Garfield station a lot whenever I'm going to Hyde Park, but I know Hyde Parkers who still wouldn't use the station to this day. $25 million is enough to partially or completely fund a new 'L' station in a lot of areas close to downtown that desperately want one (Brown: Division, Pink: Madison/United Center, Green: Damen). I wonder if Obama asked for Durbin to apply for funding so that they wouldn't have to worry about applying for it after Obama finalized the library location just in case the funding wasn't approved.

Edit: That theory was completely thrown out the window in only a few minutes since this was just published

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/o...727-story.html
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  #13104  
Old Posted Jul 27, 2016, 6:32 PM
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I wonder if Obama asked for Durbin to apply for funding so that they wouldn't have to worry about applying for it after Obama finalized the library location just in case the funding wasn't approved.
No, I think the station grant is a consolation prize for Washington Park. The U of C still seems like they want to invest in the area with the Arts Incubator, and we'll probably see some kind of master plan soon for all of the university-owned property around there.

Also - according to the Trib article, the full budget for this project is a whopping $50M, not just the $25M of the grant. That means either the city, state, or university is chipping in big-time as well. It's hard to believe it costs $50M for the modest improvements mentioned in the article.
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  #13105  
Old Posted Jul 27, 2016, 7:37 PM
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That's what I figured as well when I saw the news. It's odd that city leaders and Durbin would want a Green Line station to be rehabbed for that much money. I use the Garfield station a lot whenever I'm going to Hyde Park, but I know Hyde Parkers who still wouldn't use the station to this day. $25 million is enough to partially or completely fund a new 'L' station in a lot of areas close to downtown that desperately want one (Brown: Division, Pink: Madison/United Center, Green: Damen). I wonder if Obama asked for Durbin to apply for funding so that they wouldn't have to worry about applying for it after Obama finalized the library location just in case the funding wasn't approved.

Edit: That theory was completely thrown out the window in only a few minutes since this was just published

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/o...727-story.html
blown out the water in epic timing. poor decision in my opinion.
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  #13106  
Old Posted Jul 28, 2016, 12:16 AM
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After an investment this massive, there better be some serious TOD proposed around there.
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  #13107  
Old Posted Jul 28, 2016, 3:36 PM
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blown out the water in epic timing. poor decision in my opinion.
NO "poor decision", you expressed your opinion -- Look at how many times I've had all my teeth kicked-out for expressing mine!
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  #13108  
Old Posted Jul 28, 2016, 4:41 PM
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Zoning out? Metra consultants to rethink fare structure

http://www.dailyherald.com/article/2...rticlecomments

Marni Pike

For Metra regulars it's as simple as ABC. You pay to travel from Zone F in the suburbs to Zone A in the Loop every morning......
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  #13109  
Old Posted Jul 28, 2016, 5:53 PM
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Jesus, the Garfield stop has already had lots of work and it's only 16 years old as pointed out.

It's basically a dead zone as far as built up areas, and the latest ridership report has around 1,300 a day using it.

What a huge waste of money. There's NO development in that area. EIGHT times as many people use the California and Western blue line stations and the usage is growing greatly - why not split the money and refresh those. At least someone would be around to notice.
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  #13110  
Old Posted Jul 28, 2016, 6:13 PM
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^ Um, the California Blue Line stop was JUST refurbished top to bottom (not renovated but historically refurbished) while the Western Blue Line was also built on 2000 so it's the same exact age as Garfield. Those would be equally poor uses of money for CTA.

Why not rebuild some of the legitimately crumbling stations on the Purple Line, or finance a new infill station in some growing area?

OF course, Obama's USDOT has a directive to invest in underprivileged communities and fix problems created by past public works, so I guess the Garfield project fits with that while a project in affluent Evanston would not.
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Last edited by ardecila; Jul 28, 2016 at 6:25 PM.
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  #13111  
Old Posted Jul 28, 2016, 6:31 PM
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With how much these stations cost i would think their canopies wouldnt blow off during some strong winds.......
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  #13112  
Old Posted Jul 28, 2016, 6:38 PM
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...
or finance a new infill station in some growing area?
I'd vote for 18th/Orange or Damen/Green-Lake or Division/Brown, although a 31st/Green or State/Green-Ashland would fill gaps, too.

Also, apropos to nothing, the new Google earth satellite images seem to be some sort of weird composite or long-shutter collection - highways show up with no cars, there are no airplanes in motion at O'Hare, and even the Loop only has smudgy ghosts of cars stuck in traffic.
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  #13113  
Old Posted Jul 28, 2016, 6:54 PM
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http://www.dailyherald.com/article/2...rticlecomments

Marni Pike

For Metra regulars it's as simple as ABC. You pay to travel from Zone F in the suburbs to Zone A in the Loop every morning......
Very interesting. As the article points out, the purpose is to increase ridership. I can't think of a better way to increase ridership than to equalize fares to $2.25 within CTA territory (roughly Zones A/B/C) and offer transfers. Metra has a huge rail network on the South Side in areas far from any L line. The MD-W service is also far from L lines and could prove popular.

Of course, fares and transfers are only half the battle... if the frequency ain't there. And on most Metra lines it's hourly trains off-peak, or worse.

I've mentioned this before, but I'm super glad we have a Chicago resident (Marty Oberman) as the chair of Metra. The agency really needs to be pursuing growth within the City of Chicago and stop enabling sprawl development. Past chairmen were all suburban guys - Brad O'Halloran, Larry Huggins, Carole Doris, etc.
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  #13114  
Old Posted Jul 29, 2016, 2:23 AM
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Thing is, Metra's nonfare money all comes from the suburbs. Whether the chairman lives in the city or not, the suburbs got custody of Metra in the big divorce of 1982.
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  #13115  
Old Posted Jul 29, 2016, 11:47 AM
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Thing is, Metra's nonfare money all comes from the suburbs. Whether the chairman lives in the city or not, the suburbs got custody of Metra in the big divorce of 1982.
The City (Chicago) must find some way to subsidize Metra's in-city services (over and above collected Fare revenues) -- if they expect Metra to increase and improve it's services there -- that's only fair!
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  #13116  
Old Posted Jul 29, 2016, 5:55 PM
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Thing is, Metra's nonfare money all comes from the suburbs. Whether the chairman lives in the city or not, the suburbs got custody of Metra in the big divorce of 1982.
Maybe so, but the biggest growth potential and capital needs are in the city. Metra's not even considering suburban expansions really anymore, and the one that's been in the news recently (BNSF to Oswego) is not even in the RTA service area.

When you look at the capital improvements planned for the Metra system, they're almost all in the city or first-ring suburbs. I think there's a recognition that the rail system in the City of Chicago is broken and needs fixing before more trains to the suburbs can even be considered, and there may be an opportunity to grow the inner city ridership in conjunction with those fixes.
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  #13117  
Old Posted Jul 29, 2016, 8:33 PM
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Chicago regional rail clings to 19th century fiefdoms well into the 21st cent -- and this at the peril of the city's overall mobility and competitiveness. I know not all share my thinking -- but the RTA is generally useless for addressing sensibly integrated regional transit and should be dumped -- sooner the better. But I know it won't happen in my lifetime .
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  #13118  
Old Posted Jul 30, 2016, 1:44 AM
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Chicago regional rail clings to 19th century fiefdoms well into the 21st cent -- and this at the peril of the city's overall mobility and competitiveness. I know not all share my thinking -- but the RTA is generally useless for addressing sensibly integrated regional transit and should be dumped -- sooner the better. But I know it won't happen in my lifetime .
Well, before being voted out of office, Governor Quinn did put together a Public Transit Task Force, to address. among other issues, the problem which you identify. Granted, nothing has happened since, but it provides a frank analysis of the situation.

And the report comes in two flavors - The Final Report to the Governor and The Final Report to the General Assembly.

Here is a scenario the report offers for a re-organized/consolidated transit board.

With the general elections coming up this year, perhaps those with an interest in such things should press the candidates to include some of the task force's recommendations into their agendas.

---------------------------------------------------------

Also not sure if this has been discussed, but the Cook County Board issued its first transportation plan since 1940. The Final Report was released to the public on July 13, 2016.

Last edited by Mister Uptempo; Jul 30, 2016 at 2:37 AM. Reason: added image
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  #13119  
Old Posted Jul 30, 2016, 12:37 PM
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Metra: It takes all of us to fight transit deserts

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/o...728-story.html

July 28, 2016

We applaud recent advocacy efforts that support enhanced public transportation on Chicago’s South Side and southern suburbs as noted in your July 22 editorial “South Side's transit desert” because we, too, believe that access to efficient mass transit has the ability to drive economic growth......
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  #13120  
Old Posted Jul 30, 2016, 6:46 PM
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Maybe so, but the biggest growth potential and capital needs are in the city. Metra's not even considering suburban expansions really anymore, and the one that's been in the news recently (BNSF to Oswego) is not even in the RTA service area.

When you look at the capital improvements planned for the Metra system, they're almost all in the city or first-ring suburbs. I think there's a recognition that the rail system in the City of Chicago is broken and needs fixing before more trains to the suburbs can even be considered, and there may be an opportunity to grow the inner city ridership in conjunction with those fixes.
I've been spending a good deal of time in McHenry County lately and it blows my mind that Metra service actually rolls out even that far. I actually really like the Fox River and Chain O Lake towns but they are still more rural then suburban. There are miles of farmland even between the city centers themselves. I've been to lazy to look at the ridership from those locales but it can't be very high but I'm sure the cost is high to transfer the few riders that actually trek downtown on Metra routinely. I really question if Metra service shouldn't be rolled back to some of the outer burbs. Though I know politically that would never happen.

It is right to put on the shelf any of these extensions of Metra or even the CTA. The city and region needs to improve connectivity with what we already have rather then ramping up milage stats.
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