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Outside the Loop Radio‘s Mike Stephen has a real problem with Chicago’s pothole epidemic.
Not surprisingly, so does that idiot the Parking Ticket Geek.
Stephen invites the Geek on today’s episode of Outside the Loop Radio for a bitch session about potholes and to discuss the new ParkChicago app that launched earlier in the week.
A company called MetroMile has an app it says can help you avoid getting tickets in the future by using GPS to alert you when your car is parked on a street scheduled for street sweeping the next day.
What’s more, the company, which is now offering its miles-based auto insurance in the area, says it will pay the street cleaning tickets of 100 drivers.
On April 23, MetroMile will be outside at 435 N. Michigan Ave. from 8 a.m. until early afternoon handing out a free device called a Metronome. At noon, the first 100 drivers who show up with a 2014 Chicago street cleaning ticket and who have downloaded the MetroMile app will get $60 toward paying their tickets, officials said.
MetroMile offers auto insurance coverage based on the miles a motorist actually drives as opposed to the typical insurance plan that charges based on an estimate of miles driven. The device plugs into a diagnostic port on cars to track miles driven and also pinpoints your car location via GPS.
The nice people at WBEZ’s Afternoon Shift asked that oddball character the Parking Ticket Geek, to come down to their swanky Navy Pier studios to talk parking issues Tuesday afternoon.
The discussion ranged from the newly launched ParkChicago app, restoring paid Sunday meters, street cleaning and general tips on how to fight Chicago’s parking tickets.
Thanks to Niala, Kathy, Joyce and the entire Afternoon Shift staff for inviting the Geek down. It was a lot of fun.
Have a listen.
Dave Stern is turning lemons into lemonade, or perhaps more accurately, potholes into profits.
According to DNA Info, the historic outbreak of potholes has inspired this Old Irving Park man to start an online boutique called The Pothole Store to sell all manner of pothole related products including earrings and necklaces made from pieces of asphalt, pothole snow globes, pothole scented air fresheners and baggies of asphalt from different parts of the city with marijuana themed names like Evanstoned, Skokie Tokie and Wabash Hash. You can even buy something called potholepourri which is a small pile of asphalt with roadway related scents.
The Pothole Store even has a pothole registry. Much like those star registries where people can pay to name a star after a loved one, the International Pothole Registry allows you to name a pothole after a loved one or maybe just someone you’re just fond of, for $6.99. Each named pothole comes with a certificate of authenticity.
Of course the entire concept is all firmly tongue in cheek according to Stern.
Here’s a rundown of some of the questions and answers on this new fangled parking meter mobile payment app called ParkChicago.
Q: How does ParkChicago work?
A: Check out the video above for the general lowdown on this new payment method.
But generally, it’s like IPASS for metered parking. You resister an account, give them credit card info, add $20 to your account and you’re ready to go.
When you want to park you logon, type in the meter box number on the sign and your license plate number and you’re paid up and ready to park.
Q: Where can I download the ParkChicago app?
While the CTA and the Chicago Department of Transportation have been nearly silent in regards to the Ashland Bus Rapid Transit project, groups representing neighborhoods near Ashland Avenue have been making some noise, a bit of news on the proposal.
According to DNA Info at recent meeting the East Village Association narrowly voted 11-9 against the BRT plan.
The project calls for center running express buses along Ashland Avenue between 95th Street and Irving Park Road, with an initial phase running from 31st to Cortland.
In a few select blocks of the West Loop, Chicago Parking Meters LLC, will debut its new ParkChicago mobile payment system in a pilot test starting Tuesday.
In a small area with just 279 metered parking spaces between Halsted Street and Racine Avenue, and bordered by Madison and Monroe streets, drivers will be able to test drive the ParkChicago app to pay for their metered parking remotely using any iOS or Android smartphone.
“We’re conducting a pilot to gauge feedback from motorists before rolling it out across the city,” says CPM spokesman Scott Burnham. ”
The technology makes paying for parking much more convenient for motorists by eliminating the need to pay for parking at the pay box or have to place a meter receipt on their dashboard. Drivers can pay for parking or extend parking time from anywhere using a smart phone, iPad or similar tablet computer.
The app even has a built-in timer to remind drivers 10 minutes before their time expires to allow them to add more time or get back to their car before the meter expires.
CDOT says the speed cams near Pickard School (2300 block of W. Cermak) and near Burr Elementary (1600 block of N. Ashland) have both finished their warning phase and will start issuing speeding tickets on Wednesday, April 16th.
While the 30-day warning period will start Monday, April 14th outside of Columbus Park (500 block of S. Central Avenue) and near Ogden Plaza Park (300 block of E. Illinois Street).
Working hard not to become the pothole version of former Chicago Mayor Michael Bilandic, this past week Emanuel pledged another $15 million towards repaving another 13 miles of pothole ravaged roadways according to DNA Info.
This announcement comes after last months commitment to spend $22 million on 15 miles of streets on top of the 364 miles of roadways Emanuel already promised to resurface earlier in the year.
Chicago streets are suffering through perhaps the worst outbreak of potholes in modern times due to one of the worst winters in memory.
What the Hell is going on here?
How is it possible that a handicapped parking spot is where a stop sign is posted?
We came across this confusing mish mash of traffic signs at Drexel Blvd. and 39th.
It’s illegal for drivers to park within 30′ of a stop sign (on the approaching side). But this reserved handicapped parking spot shares a sign post with the stop sign.
Theoretically, it would seem the person parking in their reserved handicapped spot could also be ticketed for parking too close to a stop sign.