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Bus riders account for more than 20 percent of people using Lake Shore Drive every day while taking up a fraction of the space that cars do.

A transportation agenda for next mayor, city council

A coalition of 15 community-based organizations joined Active Trans in asking candidates for mayor and city council to support a set of policies that will make it safer and easier to walk, bike and ride transit in neighborhoods across Chicago.

The Active Transportation Agenda for Chicago describes how the city’s leaders can support policies and projects over the next four years that better connect all residents to jobs, schools, parks, healthcare and other daily destinations.

Active Trans and 15 partner organizations sent a letter to candidates for mayor and alderman urging them to support three top priorities from the agenda:

  • Dedicate a $20 million Bike Walk Fund in the city budget for biking and walking projects
  • Establish a 50 percent discounted CTA, Metra and Pace transit fare for low-income residents
  • Develop an equity plan for transportation and infrastructure in Chicago, based on input from a working group of community leaders, advocates, agency staff and elected officials.

Letter signers include the Chicago Jobs Council, Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago Children, Illinois Environmental Council, Northwest Side Housing Center, Southwest Organizing Project, and several other groups.

Sign the petition for a Chicago Bike Walk Fund.

Other ideas featured in the agenda for the next four years include building a continuous biking and walking trail along the full length of the Chicago River, creating a network of at least 50 miles of bus priority streets, and building at least 100 miles of new on-street bikeways.

Active Trans is meeting with candidates for mayor to discuss these ideas, and later this month Active Transportation NOW – an affiliated 501(C)4 organization – will be sending a questionnaire to all candidates for mayor and alderman on transportation issues. The group will publish and evaluate responses in advance of the February elections. 

Active Trans prepared the agenda based on input from more than 35 community, civic and advocacy organizations that work on issues related our mission to create healthier, more sustainable and equitable communities. We also surveyed our members and hosted two public engagement events at the Chicago Urban League in Bronzeville and St. John Berchman’s Parish in Logan Square.

Residents and community groups interested in joining Active Trans’ election outreach activities can contact Campaign Organizer W. Robert Schultz III at robert@activetrans.org or 312-216-0471.