Did You Know?

Only 24 percent of jobs in the region are accessible by transit in 90 minutes or less by a typical resident — and that number drops to 12 percent in the suburbs.

Turning plans into reality

Whether you supported Rahm Emanuel or not in the Chicago mayoral election, key elements of his transportation plan are really exciting. Here’s a quick rundown of his plan:

– Increase the number bike lane miles added each year from 8 to 25.
– Prioritize the creation of protected bike lanes.
– Double the amount of bike parking.
– Complete the Bloomingdale Trail during his first term.
– Pass an ordinance to require bike parking at new and existing buildings.
– Extend and revitalize the Red Line.
– Create policies to encourage Transit Oriented Development.

Mayor Daley has been a staunch bike advocate, but it's fair to say that the bike elements in Emanuel's plan represent a major advance at city hall.

Chicago will build its first protected bike lane on Stony Island Ave., but no other streets have been formally identified. Recently—with our urging and the release of Emanuel's plan—Chicago Department of Transportation appears to be taking steps to identify other streets suitable for protected bike lanes.

These issues were elevated in the campaign because our community put it on the candidates' agendas. Congrats everyone!

Now the hard work begins, because campaign pledges and plans alone don't move bikes and buses. Moreover, Emanuel's transportation plan is more like a list of priorities, and Active Trans wants to help him develop a truly comprehensive bike/ped/transit plan.

Active Trans is reaching out to Emanuel's transition team to offer our help and advice. An important first step is Emanuel's selection of the CDOT commissioner. There's a good chance he'll bring in someone new, and we are making the case for a progressive leader and supporter of active transportation.