Tag Archives: CDOT

Alderman: Milwaukee Avenue Protected Bike Lane Proposal Dead

A photo mockup of what the proposed protected bike lanes on Milwaukee Avenue would have looked like. Photo credit: CDOT

A photo mockup of what the proposed protected bike lanes on Milwaukee Avenue would have looked like. Photo credit: CDOT

The protected bike lanes proposed for Milwaukee Avenue on the city’s Northwest Side are dead, according to a spokesperson for Alderman John Arena (45th).

DNA Info reports the announcement that the controversial idea to remove a lane of traffic in each direction and install protected bike lanes had lost support of Arena.

The alderman had originally supported this proposal by the Chicago Department of Transportation over two other concepts.

“It just wasn’t going to be practical,” Arena’s spokesperson Owen Brugh told DNA Info.

A Bike Riding Writer Explores The Politics Of Potholes

CDOT crews fill potholes on the North Side in 2013.

CDOT crews fill potholes on the North Side in 2013.

Is there a relationship between politics and potholes?

Chicago Reader columnist Ben Jorvasky wanted to find out.

Jorvasky, an avid bike rider, took a long ride into several areas of the city to see if his theory that aldermanic allies of Mayor Rahm Emanuel had less potholes on roads in their wards than aldermen who aren’t as cooperative with the powers that be.

Riding through mayoral critic Ald. Scott Waguespack’s 32nd Ward and into Ameya Pawar’s 47th and ending up in Joe Moore’s 49th, both loyalists to the Emanuel regime, he doesn’t seem to see a distinction to the state of streets in the city–they all suck writes Jorvasky.

State Street Bridge Closed 10 Days For Riverwalk Construction

Graphic courtesy of CDOT.

Graphic courtesy of CDOT.

Starting Wednesday, the State Street Bridge will be closed to all traffic for 10 days to allow for construction work according to the Chicago Department of Transportation.

The bridge will be placed in the up position to allow for work connected to the Riverwalk construction project until August 23rd.

A pedestrian path is being constructed on the south bank of the of the Chicago River from State Street to Lake Street to link to the current Riverwalk which extends all the way to Lake Shore Drive.

All bus, bike, pedestrian and motor vehicle traffic is being detoured during the week and a half of work.

City Caves To Pressure, Will Review 9000 Red Light Camera Tickets

Scheinfeld at press conference

CDOT Commissioner Rebekah Scheinfeld speaks at a crosswalk enforcement press conference in early July.

Since Sunday’s Chicago Tribune story reporting mysterious spikes in red light camera violations several years ago, there’s been pressure from aldermen and the media for a response from City Hall.

Late Wednesday,  Chicago Department of Transportation Commissioner Rebekah Scheinfeld responded to the controversy with testimony in front of the city council’s Committee on Pedestrian and Traffic Safety.

“The Mayor and CDOT take very seriously the validity of and public confidence in all of our safety programs, including the red light camera program,” Scheinfeld said to begin her explanatory testimony. “Red light camera enforcement is designed to increase safety on Chicago’s streets. Cities across the country, and throughout the world, have been using such technology for many years.”

State Street Bridge Closed All Week For Riverwalk Construction

A small flotilla of boats passes through the open State Street Bridge on the Chicago River, Chicago, Illinois. Photo credit: Jeremy Atherton, © 2006.

A small flotilla of boats passes through the open State Street Bridge on the Chicago River, Chicago, Illinois. Photo credit: Jeremy Atherton, © 2006.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Better late than never.

The State Street Bridge over the Chicago River downtown will be closed all this week for construction work to be completed on a walkway for the Chicago Riverwalk according to the Chicago Department of Transportation.

The bridge closed to traffic Monday, July 14th at 6 AM and will reopen on Monday, July 21st at 6 !M.

Both the Clark Street and Dearborn Street bridges have been closed in past weeks for the same project to allow for support to be installed for the new walkway.

The city is extending the current Riverwalk pedestrian path which will, when finished, stretch from Lake Shore Drive to Lake Street. The Riverwalk currently terminates at Franklin Street.

Photo credit: Jeremy Atherton.

Public Weighs In On Rehabbing Lake Shore Drive At Meeting

Cars back up at rush hour at the Belmont Avenue exit on northbound Lake Shore Drive. Photo credit: NorthLakeShoreDrive.org

Cars back up at rush hour at the Belmont Avenue exit on northbound Lake Shore Drive. Photo credit: NorthLakeShoreDrive.org

Tuesday July 8th, the Drake Hotel played host for a meeting to “Redefine The Drive” to elicit the public’s input on what changes should be made on a planned $1 billion facelift of North Lake Shore Drive.

The Illinois Department of Transportation in conjunction with the Chicago Department of Transportation plan a dramatic rehab and perhaps reinvention of the seven mile stretch of LSD between Grand and Hollywood. The agencies say due to the age of the roadway it will need to be rebuilt.

The project wouldn’t even break ground until 2019 or even 2020, with costs estimated to be around $1 billion–a hefty sum for a city and state which are both close to insolvency.

According to the Chicago Sun-Times, all sorts of ideas were suggested including: a double-decker configuration with an upper and lower LSD; a light rail line down the middle of LSD; or dedicated express bus lanes.

New Speed Cameras Coming to 13 Locations Across the City

Contractors bring in the electrical power for a new speed camera near Irving Park and Clark Street.

Contractors bring in the electrical power for a new speed camera near Irving Park and Clark Street.

Slow down drivers: More speed cameras are scheduled to go in across the city soon, according to the Chicago Department of Transportation.

The city announced late last week the locations of 12 new camera locations around schools and parks in six area of the city over the next few months.

A 13th location near Calumet Park, in the 3500 block of East 95th Street, was announced last month. The camera was installed in late June and began its 30-day warning period on June 30.

Residents Angered By Bike Lane Proposal For Milwaukee Avenue

Milwaukee Avenue bike lanes graphic

A graphic shows one proposal which would dramatically reduce the number of parking spaces along Milwaukee Avenue. Photo credit: Heather Cherone/DNA Info.

Residents of Jefferson Park and Gladstone Park do not want protected bike lanes in their neighborhood.

Several hundred angry residents showed up at a meeting on Wednesday to hear a presentation that includes two plans which would reduce traffic on a two-mile stretch of Milwaukee Avenue between Elston and Lawrence from four lanes to just two and add protected bike lanes according to DNA Info.

“Nobody wants this,” said one vocal resident. “It is being rammed down our throats.”

“We hate it,” said another.

Division Street Bridge Closure, Demolition Starts Monday

A sign on Elston Avenue detours drivers around the closed portion of Ashland Avenue this weekend.The Division Street bridge over the North Branch Canal of the Chicago River will begin being demolished starting Monday morning, June 30th.

The Chicago Department of Transportation says the 111-year old double-leaf bascule movable bridge is over 100 years old and needs to be replaced.

CDOT crews will replace the demolished bridge with an interim bridge until a new, permanent bascule bridge is constructed.

“This historic bridge has been in service for more than a century as a key transportation link across Goose Island for cars, trains, bikes and pedestrians,” said CDOT Commissioner Rebekah Scheinfeld. “But it is at the end of its useful life, and is in need of a complete reconstruction.”

Traffic will be detoured via Ashland Avenue.

CDOT says the detour will be in place until mid-October.

Redflex Bribery Battle Spills Into Federal Court

Redflex logoBy The Newspaper.com

A federal judge last week sided with the former executive vice president of red light camera manufacturer Redflex Traffic Systems who is suing his former employer for wrongful termination. District Judge George H. Wu issued a tentative ruling last Thursday in favor of Aaron M. Rosenberg.

The Australian firm fired Rosenberg after he was caught bribing a top city official in Chicago, Illinois. The company then sued Rosenberg and his wife in an Arizona court. Rosenberg, who lives in Los Angeles, countersued in California Superior Court in February, arguing he was just following orders from the company.

For his suit, Rosenberg served court papers on the Arizona and the California offices of Redflex. Redflex rejected this service, calling the Arizona corporation Redflex Traffic Systems Inc a “sham defendant, which does not exist.” The company insisted on removing the lawsuit to federal court because Rosenberg never worked for a California-based company.