Blog

Keep up with the latest news on Active Trans and topics that we care about in the region.

Second e-scooter pilot serves as another step forward

Jan 19, 2021 | by Alex Perez

After two years of pilot programs, Chicago is well-positioned to create a long-term e-scooter sharing program that is focused on neighborhoods lacking transportation options.

The four-month long second e-scooter pilot program ended in mid-December. Bird, Lime, and Spin were the vendors, with a limit of 3,333 scooters per vendor. This was four times the number of scooters deployed in the 2019 pilot.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to lower ridership levels in 2020.

Free masks piloted on 20 CTA bus routes

Jan 14, 2021 | by Ted Villaire

The Chicago Transit Authority took an important step forward in keeping riders safe and healthy by starting to offer free, disposable face masks on approximately 200 buses serving 20 bus routes.

Kudos to the CTA for making the move, which began at the end of 2020. Making masks readily available on all buses and trains is the best way to ensure universal mask compliance.

Active Trans first called for CTA to provide free masks to all riders who need one in July.

Second stimulus is big win, but more work to do to save Chicago transit

Jan 11, 2021 | by Kyle Whitehead

The money coming to Chicago-area transit agencies from the second federal COVID relief bill should help avoid major additional service cuts in 2021, but the fight is far from over.

The COVID-19 Economic Relief Bill, passed by Congress in late December, includes approximately $486 million in emergency support for Chicago transit. The regional transit budget shortfall for 2021 was about $500 million prior to this assistance.

Thank you to the hundreds of advocates across the region who took action urging our Congressional leaders to fight for transit. 

Top 10 walking, biking, and transit stories of 2020

Jan 11, 2021 | by Kyle Whitehead

2020 was a challenging year on many fronts. The coronavirus devastated communities across Chicagoland in 2020 and the transportation impacts will be felt for years to come. 

Throughout the year, the Active Transportation Alliance continued to do the important work of fighting for clean and equitable transportation.

Here’s a look back at 10 of the most important walking, biking, and transit stories and advocacy victories of the year. 

1.

Two key funding sources for projects in your community

Jan 6, 2021 | by Maggie Melin Czerwinski

The walking and biking boom during the pandemic has accelerated community interest in funding bike and pedestrian projects.

For decades, these types of projects have proven to make our streets safer for all users while boosting community health, equity, and sustainability. Yet, finding funding can be surprisingly difficult, especially for low-income, rural, and Black and Brown communities.

Fortunately, new funding opportunities have recently emerged thanks to advocacy from Active Trans and our partners across the state.

Help make your community a walkable winter wonderland

Dec 24, 2020 | by Active Trans

We want to ensure that our communities are places anyone can easily walk. This is especially true during the COVID-19 pandemic when it seems that more people have taken up walking.

When the snow flies, that means we need to shovel those sidewalks!

It’s the right thing to do and in some places — including Chicago — it’s the law.

The Chicago City Council updated its snow removal ordinance in 2015,

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“Community activator” uses bicycling to bring people together

Dec 22, 2020 | by Maya Norris

Pha’tal Perkins has seen for himself the transformative power of bicycling. The bicycling advocate and community activist created the Roll N Peace bike rides to get more residents in Englewood to hop on two wheels as a way to promote public safety and unify this neighborhood on the southwest side of Chicago.

His extraordinary advocacy work with the Roll N Peace bike rides as well as other community safety initiatives earned him a 2020 Advocate of the Year award from Active Transportation Alliance.

Forum focuses on need to prevent transit collapse

Dec 18, 2020 | by Lynda Lopez

Active Trans recently hosted an online transit justice forum to call attention to the federal budget shortfall for transit agencies. The forum also provided an opportunity to highlight the experiences of local community members and other transit stakeholders.

Reverberating throughout the event was the need for federal support to prevent a collapse of public transit. By all accounts, the consequences will be dire — particularly for people in Black and Brown communities — if we neglect to provide the support that transit needs right now.

Transparency needed about possible cuts

Dec 16, 2020 | by Kyle Whitehead

As we continue to fight for emergency federal support for Chicago area public transit, Active Trans joined a coalition of advocates calling for our transit agencies to share more information about what will be targeted in cuts if the federal funding doesn’t come through.

Following are excerpts from our coalition’s letter that was submitted to the boards of RTA, CTA, Metra, and Pace during their December budget meetings.

Food access survey results show discomfort, lack of access

Dec 11, 2020 | by Active Trans

In preparation for an upcoming virtual town hall on the topic of food access and public transit on December 15, we conducted a survey.

The goal was to gain insight into topics like whether public transit has helped or hurt peoples’ food security and whether people have to take transit to other neighborhoods to get fresh food.

Here are some of the results of the survey: 

  • On a scale of “very comfortable”