Did You Know?

Roughly every three days, one person biking or walking is killed by someone driving a car in the Chicago region.

Speak up at Bus Rapid Transit public meetings Oct. 16-18 to bring better transit to Chicago!

/This month, CTA and CDOT will hold their second round of public meetings about the project to bring Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) to Western and Ashland AvenuesBe there to hear about the latest plans to bring world-class BRT to Chicago and to speak up for better transit!

At these meetings, you’ll have a chance to comment on a few different proposals for the design of BRT on both streets. CTA and CDOT presented a number of design options for each street (PDF) at the last round of public meetings in June.

Based on lessons from successful BRT systems in other cities and our experience with creating more livable streets, Active Trans offers the following feedback on design options that we’d encourage you to keep in mind as you attend and comment:

  • Bus-only lanes in the center of the street will provide better transit than curbside bus-only lanes. Placing bus-only lanes in the center of the street helps to reduce conflicts with existing local bus routes, cars parking and turning, and other vehicles that may end up obstructing a lane near the curb. It significantly reduces the chances that the bus lane will be blocked and therefore makes your transit trip both faster and more reliable.
  • Reducing sidewalk width or adding travel lanes would reduce walkability and livability. Transit and pedestrian-friendly streets go hand-in-hand to create successful, livable places where people can walk between transit stations and neighborhood destinations. BRT is an opportunity to improve the character of our streets and create more walkable transit hubs in the corridor. It’s essential to maintain quality public space on our sidewalks that growing business districts can use for sidewalk seating and to enhance their neighborhoods. Replacing parking with a bus lane would also create six lanes of fast-moving traffic where there’s now only four. This will feel significantly less comfortable for people walking, especially if cars or buses are speeding by right against the sidewalk. Parking not only provides access to local businesses, but also provides a barrier between pedestrians and traffic that can make a street feel safer. Rather than narrowing sidewalks or removing parking, we should reprioritize how we use the existing traffic lanes by converting a car lane to a bus-only lane.

BRT on Western and Ashland presents an incredible opportunity to bring better transit to Chicago and to strengthen neighborhoods. Attend one of the city’s open house meetings to learn about the proposed alternatives and help us speak up for a BRT plan that includes world-class transit improvements with pedestrian-friendly streets!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012
5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Iglesia Rebaño Church
2435 W. Division Street
Chicago, IL 60622
Nearby transit options include: CTA Bus Routes #49 Western and #70 Division

Wednesday, October 17, 2012
5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Lindblom Math and Science Academy
6130 S. Wolcott Avenue
Chicago, IL 60636
Nearby transit options include: Green Line (Ashland/63rd Stop) and CTA Bus Routes #63 63rd and #9 Ashland

Thursday, October 18, 2012
5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Lane Tech College Prep High School
2501 W. Addison Street
Chicago, IL 60618
Nearby transit options include: CTA Bus Routes #49 Western and #152 Addison

All facilities accessible to people with disabilities.