Planning

Transportation and public health: a growing alliance

Public demand for more walkable communities is arguably at its highest point in recent history.

Support from decision makers is catching fire, and the cross pollination between transportation planning and public health is starting to bear fruit.

Local Complete Streets efforts spotlighted at conference

All across the country, advocates are fighting one intersection or one street segment at a time to create safer options for people who bike, walk and take public transit. 

It’s vital, important work, but there is another way. 

A formalized “Complete Streets” strategy helps ensure that active transportation options are more systematically considered every time a municipality builds or repairs a street.

Surgeon general: we need walkable communities

Even though the U.S. Surgeon General has played a vital role in promoting national public health policy, very few people can name any of America’s top doctors. (A few words to jog your memory: C.Everett Koop; smoking; HIV/AIDS).

Revitalization project coming to West Pullman

With the development of Big Marsh Bike Park in South Deering and the Pullman Historic District becoming a national monument, lots of exciting things are happening on Chicago’s far Southside. One more project to add to that list is the 119th Street Corridor Plan.

The corridor will run four blocks along 119th Street in West Pullman between I-57 and Union Street, with the Major Taylor Trail crossing through on Halsted Street.

Stretch of South State St. now easier for walking

State Street between 69th and 79th Streets on Chicago’s South Side has not beeen a welcoming place to walk.

Located just east of the Dan Ryan Expressway, the street is essentially a frontage road, but gets a lot of pedestrian traffic going to Red Line stations located along the median of the Dan Ryan at 69th and 79th Streets.

New report offers guidance on Complete Streets policies

One of the best ways to make a street safer for everyone is making it a Complete Street. These are streets that can be safely used by everyone regardless of their age, ability or travel mode.

Complete Streets are designed to accommodate people walking, biking, using wheelchairs and using transit and cars.

To ensure that these types of streets are built, communities often put in place a Complete Streets policy.

Expansion of TOD zoning makes sense

Housing that is walkable to public transit may soon become attainable to more Chicagoans thanks to a zoning proposal that would double the land that can support transit-convenient development. 

This sort of zoning is called “transit-oriented development,” or “TOD,” which designates land around a train station as focused on providing a mix of housing and commercial opportunities all within a short walk to a transit station. 

Oak Park to get Divvy and Neighborhood Greenways

As a 20-year resident of Oak Park, I’m excited to share a number of changes coming to Oak Park that will improve conditions for biking and walking.

Last week, the village board approved the Oak Park Neighborhood Greenways system as an addendum to its 2008 bike plan. Elements of the 2008 bike plan have already been adopted, such as significantly more and better bike parking near transit stations, bike lanes, wayfinding signs and creating a village government bike fleet. 

Weigh in on Will County transportation plan

As citizens it’s our duty to actively participate in decisions that affect our community. People who live or work in Will County will soon have a chance to do just that at a series of four open houses to discuss transportation systems and future transportation needs and challenges. 

CDOT releases 2015 street resurfacing plan

Though the 2014–15 winter hasn’t (yet) been as cold as 2014’s Chiberia or as snowy as 2011’s Snowpocalypse, the freeze-thaw cycles our region experiences each winter mean that potholes are inevitable.

The good news: Earlier this week, Chicago Department of Transportation released a list of 61 miles of arterial streets to be repaved as part of the city’s new annual standard of repaving at least 300 miles of roads!