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  #14881  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 11:09 AM
OhioGuy OhioGuy is offline
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I doubt city officials would want to interrupt the signal timing of the traffic lights along the Mag Mile to allow for legitimate BRT. Plus there are so many buses through that stretch the lights would almost have to stay constantly green for north-south traffic and very little east-west traffic. Although I guess you’re only suggesting bus lanes and not anything related to signal priority. How have the bus lanes for Loop Link fared? Beyond creating fixed shelters for the homeless, has Loop Link been all that successful?

Last edited by OhioGuy; Aug 1, 2019 at 1:23 PM.
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  #14882  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 12:52 PM
OrdoSeclorum OrdoSeclorum is offline
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That's right - we suddenly had billions to bribe Amazon to come here, when there's not enough money to complete the order of 7000-series railcars. (Not 5000 like I said before)
I've heard this line a billion times and it always confuses me. It's exactly like "Cold today. So much for global warming!"

Tax incentives that were offered to Amazon were like a rebate. If you spend $10-billion, you get $1-billion back. Or discounts, "Most people get this deal are taxed $10, but we'll only tax you $5."

Nobody was just going to hand Amazon billions of dollars.
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  #14883  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 2:51 PM
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Originally Posted by OhioGuy View Post
I doubt city officials would want to interrupt the signal timing of the traffic lights along the Mag Mile to allow for legitimate BRT. Plus there are so many buses through that stretch the lights would almost have to stay constantly green for north-south traffic and very little east-west traffic. Although I guess you’re only suggesting bus lanes and not anything related to signal priority. How have the bus lanes for Loop Link fared? Beyond creating fixed shelters for the homeless, has Loop Link been all that successful?
Yes, absolutely. Do you ride those buses? They move pretty quickly through the Loop and drivers are fairly respectful. My girlfriend rode the Madison bus before and after the lanes were finished and definitely noticed an improvement on the sections where lanes were built. Loop Link also created great protected bike lanes through the Loop where previously only bike messengers and diehards would ride.

The only issue with the bus lanes comes from private office shuttles loading or just idling in the lanes. Until now, the city has been reluctant to crack down since they don't want to piss off the real estate industry that operates the shuttles. You don't even need enforcement cameras to crack down (which would require a state law), just a few cops at Union and Ogilvie stations writing tickets.
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  #14884  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 3:17 PM
k1052 k1052 is online now
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Bus lanes with stop consolidation/all door boarding on Michigan Ave would be amazing. Especially if they eventually tie into dedicated lanes when LSD is rebuilt. I don't even think you're really need transit signal priority except for where the routes turn into and out of the loop and there are less disruptive implementations for that.
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  #14885  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 4:25 PM
Jim in Chicago Jim in Chicago is offline
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Originally Posted by OrdoSeclorum View Post

Nobody was just going to hand Amazon billions of dollars.
Um, this is Illinois we're talking about. Any such hand over wouldn't be above the table, but I wouldn't put anything past Chicago or Illinois. Just sayin...
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  #14886  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 4:28 PM
Chi-Sky21 Chi-Sky21 is offline
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If they could somehow "link" the loop link with the mccormick busway and improve on that that might work.
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  #14887  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 5:12 PM
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Mr Downtown Mr Downtown is offline
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Well, there's a study under way (well, maybe actual study hasn't started yet) to use the MPEA busway for South Lakefront express buses. They'd come off Lake Shore Drive at 31st, use a new busway through the Michael Reese site and McCormick truck yards, then the existing busway. A new ramp at Balbo would allow them on and off there for the existing routes downtown.

I just wish we could try a temporary bus lane on State or Michigan during Test of Chicago and Lollapalooza. When Grant Park roads are closed, it sometimes takes 6 or J14 trips nearly an hour to go from Jackson to 31st.
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  #14888  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 5:47 PM
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I wish the CTA would look into a proof-of-payment system for buses to speed things up. I think it would help with ridership as well. By continuing to require fares for trains, most pass users will continue to buy passes.

They would need some controls in place to protect against racial profiling. And i'm not quite sure what you do the "unstable" people who won't care about enforcement.
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  #14889  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 6:19 PM
LouisVanDerWright LouisVanDerWright is online now
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Originally Posted by ardecila View Post

The only issue with the bus lanes comes from private office shuttles loading or just idling in the lanes. Until now, the city has been reluctant to crack down since they don't want to piss off the real estate industry that operates the shuttles. You don't even need enforcement cameras to crack down (which would require a state law), just a few cops at Union and Ogilvie stations writing tickets.
Better yet, the city should just have a couple gaggles of bike cops circulating in the loop at all times writing tickets to any violators in the bus or bike Lanes. They would pay their salary for the year in a single quarter.
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  #14890  
Old Posted Aug 1, 2019, 6:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr Downtown View Post

I just wish we could try a temporary bus lane on State or Michigan during Test of Chicago and Lollapalooza. When Grant Park roads are closed, it sometimes takes 6 or J14 trips nearly an hour to go from Jackson to 31st.
Other places do these as pilots. All it really takes is for CDOT to put out a bunch of cones and some temp signs.
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  #14891  
Old Posted Aug 2, 2019, 5:08 PM
Jim in Chicago Jim in Chicago is offline
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Originally Posted by LouisVanDerWright View Post
Better yet, the city should just have a couple gaggles of bike cops circulating in the loop at all times writing tickets to any violators in the bus or bike Lanes. They would pay their salary for the year in a single quarter.
Single quarter? It would pay for itself in the first DAY! I've starting yelling things at them like "RED LIGHT, IDIOT, I have the WALK sign". So far it's only gotten me a bunch of fingers flipped at me, but I know I'll probable get shot some day, so I really must stop.
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  #14892  
Old Posted Aug 11, 2019, 2:45 AM
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The popularity of the Hiawatha service is clearly rising.

Pretty good summary of construction projects needed to increase Hiawatha frequency to 10 RT/day

Improving the connection: Work ongoing to enhance Amtrak service from Milwaukee to Chicago
“We’re part of the Chicago megaregion, which is one of the 10 largest economic regions in the country,” Tim Sheehy, president of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, said at a recent news conference. “And to put it simply, commerce is about connections, and this train helps us connect to Chicago in a more frequent, more effective way.”

Joel Brennan, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Administration, said that more than 40% of trips on the Hiawatha are business related, and 60% of those people taking the Hiawatha for business are making daily round trips.

“Businesses in this corridor clearly recognize the importance of this because 37% of the travelers indicated their business employer had paid for their ticket for these trips,” he said.

The Hiawatha service is Amtrak’s busiest line in the Midwest.
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  #14893  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2019, 1:24 AM
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Absolutely embarrassing that Wisconsin’s Republican legislature is doing their part while Illinois is kowtowing to North Shore NIMBYs. If (and it’s a big if) the state chooses to sink money into the UP’s New Line as an alternative to the scrapped Glenview projects, it could give us a dedicated passenger corridor, which would be worth the expense, especially if the state can also gain ownership of CP’s tracks north of Rondout... but it’s very unclear where the state would get $100M for that project given our terrible budgets.
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  #14894  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2019, 3:30 PM
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Originally Posted by ardecila View Post
Absolutely embarrassing that Wisconsin’s Republican legislature is doing their part while Illinois is kowtowing to North Shore NIMBYs. If (and it’s a big if) the state chooses to sink money into the UP’s New Line as an alternative to the scrapped Glenview projects, it could give us a dedicated passenger corridor, which would be worth the expense, especially if the state can also gain ownership of CP’s tracks north of Rondout... but it’s very unclear where the state would get $100M for that project given our terrible budgets.
It's clear that alternative alignments are being considered and maybe the state government will decide to spend more money instead of upsetting north shore NIMBYs in Glenview. Though admittedly I would have liked to see the village flush millions down the toilet trying to oppose the project.
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  #14895  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2019, 5:11 PM
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Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

This seems like it would be excellent news, eh!

Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Aug 9, 2019 / 11:49 AM EDT

"EAST LANSING, Mich. — Amtrak is considering a proposal that would extend the Wolverine line’s rail service from Chicago to Toronto.

The proposal was discussed on Thursday during the Michigan Rail Conference at Michigan State University in East Lansing. The idea was first brought up in March in an Amtrak grant request.

Amtrak says the idea would involve construction of a border processing facility and upgrades to existing train stations along the way..."

https://www.woodtv.com/news/national...go-to-toronto/
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  #14896  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2019, 6:27 PM
sammyg sammyg is offline
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Originally Posted by ardecila View Post
Absolutely embarrassing that Wisconsin’s Republican legislature is doing their part while Illinois is kowtowing to North Shore NIMBYs. If (and it’s a big if) the state chooses to sink money into the UP’s New Line as an alternative to the scrapped Glenview projects, it could give us a dedicated passenger corridor, which would be worth the expense, especially if the state can also gain ownership of CP’s tracks north of Rondout... but it’s very unclear where the state would get $100M for that project given our terrible budgets.
Wisconsin is trying to connect to the stronger Chicago market. Illinois probably doesn't want that to happen, to keep business in state.
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  #14897  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2019, 7:27 PM
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Originally Posted by 202_Cyclist View Post
This seems like it would be excellent news, eh!

Amtrak considers extending Wolverine line from Chicago to Toronto

Aug 9, 2019 / 11:49 AM EDT

"EAST LANSING, Mich. — Amtrak is considering a proposal that would extend the Wolverine line’s rail service from Chicago to Toronto.

The proposal was discussed on Thursday during the Michigan Rail Conference at Michigan State University in East Lansing. The idea was first brought up in March in an Amtrak grant request.

Amtrak says the idea would involve construction of a border processing facility and upgrades to existing train stations along the way..."

https://www.woodtv.com/news/national...go-to-toronto/
That would be awesome! Especially considering how marked up plane ticks seem to be to Canadian markets hopefully this would be a welcome alternative.
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  #14898  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2019, 7:33 PM
the urban politician the urban politician is online now
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Originally Posted by sammyg View Post
Wisconsin is trying to connect to the stronger Chicago market. Illinois probably doesn't want that to happen, to keep business in state.
Absolutely.

Think about how it would affect Illinois if well paid professionals were a reasonable commuter rail ride from the Loop but lived in Milwaukee instead of Chicago. Will be even more appealing if JB gets his new income tax increase.
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  #14899  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2019, 8:44 PM
sammyg sammyg is offline
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Wisconsin income tax would still be higher for people earning > $50,000, so well paid professionals wouldn't go anywhere. It's the businesses that would move up.
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