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Chicago’s first protected bike lane on Kinzie St. increased ridership by 55 percent without increasing traffic congestion for cars.

Meeting with mayoral candidate del Valle

Along with other transportation advocates, I just met with Chicago City Clerk and former State Senator Miguel del Valle, who is a candidate for Chicago mayor. We went through our Sustainable Transportation Platform with del Valle, and I am happy to report he supports all 10 recommendations outlined in the plan.

He was careful not to endorse the platform whole cloth, saying that we may have differences over how to implement the recommendations. I think he was also concerned that endorsing the platform could be construed as a “campaign promise,” and he can’t promise implementation of everything in the platform.

Despite those caveats, he talked about his fondness for bicycling, its importance to the city and how his son is an avid cyclist. He also talked about one of the reasons he opposes the city’s parking meter contract, and has joined a lawsuit to overturn it: It’s because it limits the city’s ability to take away parking spaces for building bike lanes and sidewalks, and slowing traffic. We share these concerns!

He was intrigued by the opportunity to use Bus Rapid Transit to create a north-south route that connects CTA and Metra rail lines, and he said this should be a higher priority than high speed rail service to O’Hare Airport. He said he sees a role for the city to help support car sharing and bike sharing. Overall, I was thoroughly pleased to hear del Valle speak so strongly about his support for biking, walking and transit.

You can learn more about the candidates' reactions to the Sustainable Transportation Platform in this recent Time Out Chicago article.

Stay tuned for my reports from meetings with other mayoral candidates. In the meantime, be sure to sign on to show your candidates in Chicago and the suburbs that you want them to get behind sustainable transportation.