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Did You Know?

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

“Walk Across Illinois” in 2012 by….riding transit!

Governor Quinn recently asked all Illinois residents in 2012 to join him in walking 167 miles, roughly the distance from Rock Island on the Mississippi River to Chicago on Lake Michigan.

/Quinn’s program harkens back to 2001 when he walked across the state to promote universal health care.

If you’re a transit user, his request is easier than you think!

Over the course of a year, that’s one-half mile per day, which most transit riders walk on a regular basis.

I bike to transit on the front end of my work commute as do many others, and in the suburbs many people drive to Metra. But walking is by far the most common way to access train stations and bus stops, so let’s focus on soles for now.

Generally, people walk between one-eighth to one-half a mile on each end of a transit trip. Let’s say you walk a quarter mile (roughly two Chicago blocks) to and from home and quarter mile to and from your office each day.

That’s 1 mile per day times a typical work year of 230 days = 230 miles per year. Ta dah! You’ve walked across Illinois and even all the way to Iowa City!

Throw in some additional non-work transit trips, and you’re getting close to Des Moines.

The Census Bureau reports that nearly 500,000 people in Metro Chicago take transit to work.

Add to that people who ride transit but don’t take it to work (we don’t know how many people that includes, but there are 2 million transit trips daily in the Chicago region), and you have a lot of transit riders who are “walking across Illinois” every year!

You can join the governor and track your progress at WalkAcrossIllinois.org.