[Interactive] Circle Interchange Reconstruction Faces Little Opposition From Neighbors
Jun28

[Interactive] Circle Interchange Reconstruction Faces Little Opposition From Neighbors

The Chicago Blackhawks are the best professional hockey team in America. The Circle Interchange – a couple of miles from the United Center – is arguably the worst traffic bottleneck in the country. In fact a study by the American Transportation Research Institute ranks it the the slowest, most congested interchange in the nation. Now the Illinois Department of Transportation is getting ready to overhaul the interchange which links the...

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Chicago’s Loop Gets Its First Scramble Crossing [Video]
May31

Chicago’s Loop Gets Its First Scramble Crossing [Video]

As the Chicago Department of Transportation continues to prioritize pedestrian safety and mobility, it’s opened Chicago’s first scramble crossing. The intersection of South State Street and Jackson Boulevard was re-striped early this morning not only with zebra stripes in the city’s usual four-square configuration, but also with diagonal crossings cutting across the intersection. Once per cycle the traffic lights...

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Week Links – March 24-30, 2013
Mar31

Week Links – March 24-30, 2013

There will be a public meeting about the reconstruction of the Circle Interchange (I-90/I-94/I-290) on April 3rd at 4:00pm at the Marriott at 625 South Ashland Avenue.  To find out what’s planned, download this PDF. Howells and Hood, the new restaurant inside the Tribune Tower, has opened. It’s huge, and described as offering “upscale bar food.” WBBM-TV’s report here. The following links may or may not...

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Week Links: February 24-March 2, 2013
Mar03

Week Links: February 24-March 2, 2013

Meanwhile in the rest of the city… CDOT is out with more information and drawings about the rapid bus route it wants to create n The Loop.  The city’s been talking about it for over a year, and these are the first pictures we’ve seen that look like anything useful. The Chicago chapter of the AIA is holding an event to help homeowners who are interested in renovating or remodeling their homes, but don’t know where to...

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Status Update: Dearborn Street Bike Lanes
Dec11

Status Update: Dearborn Street Bike Lanes

Last week, bicycle lanes came to The Loop in the form of a protected path running north and south along Dearborn Street. Officially, it’s called a “barrier-protected bike lane” because a barrier separates the cycling lanes from the lanes of moving traffic.  In many cities, that barrier is a small grassy or tree-lined median. In Chicago, it’s a line of parked cars. In the photo above, you can see the line of...

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Will a Scrawnier Wolf Get Everyone on Point?
Nov05

Will a Scrawnier Wolf Get Everyone on Point?

The current champion for largest and most controversial development in downtown Chicago (that actually has a chance of happening) is making its way through the approval process largely unscathed. Wolf Point (350 North Orleans Street) is the lupine child of Houston-based global mega-developer Hines, and Chicago-based local really-wanna-be-huge-someday developer Magellan.  Their architect, Pelli Clarke Pelli has made some changes to the...

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Best. Bike Lanes. Evar.

On June third, Alderman Reilly announced that the City of Chicago was going to copy an experimental form of bike lane currently in use in New York.  It was a slow news day the next morning, so pretty much every media outlet made mention of it. However, since the lanes hadn’t yet been constructed, no one had any pictures. Here’s one sent out by the alderman showing one of the protected bike lanes, sometimes known as...

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Pedestrian Scrambles and Traffic Calming Coming to Chicago

The Chicago Sun-Times reported yesterday that Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel’s new transportation commissioner, Gabe Klein, wants to install pedestrian scrambles in the Loop. Klein is from Washington, D.C. which also has the street-crossing convention, as does Toronto, New York, London, Denver, and most famously, Tokyo.  Shibuya Crossing, for example, has been featured in many films and has become an iconic location in Japan....

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Why Tourists are Commuting Faster Than You

A friend of mine commutes six days a week between her condo just off Michigan Avenue, and her job at one of the grotty startups in the West Loop.  Every day she panics about being late.  Every day she watches the Chicago Water Taxis chug down the river while she’s sitting on an immobile 151 bus stuck in traffic.  Why does she do this? For some reason there is a certain quadrant of people who believe the water taxis that ply the...

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CDOT Takes Another Crack at Upper Randolph

The Chicago Department of Transportation is going to once again try to straighten out the traffic mess that is East Upper Randolph Street.  The street, which climbs between Millennium Park and the Aon Center/Blue Cross/ Prudential Plaza streetwall is a nightmare for tourists and locals alike. That’s because whether looking at a map or just navigating on instinct, it makes perfect sense that Randolph would continue the...

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