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1 Transit [take transit: We live in the City, people. We can t expect to have parking. ] The ability of people to travel by transit is not only an equity issue, it is a matter of economic vitality for the neighborhoods of Wicker Park and Bucktown. Traffic in the area is already exceeding the available capacity. Given the amount of new and proposed residential and commercial development the area, the road system is simply unable to accommodate the entire demand. Transit is the most viable option for supporting the major travel needs of the community. The system is already in place. However, it needs the support of the built environment and proper funding to make it work. Transit is economically viable when land use patterns support it. Author and professor Robert Cervero describes three D s that are essential for transit: density, diversity, and design. Higher density development unequivocally produces more trips by transit. Statistical comparisons between cities and across corridors within cities suggest that every 10 percent increase in population and employment densities yields anywhere between a 5 and 8 percent increase in transit ridership. 12 The number of dwelling units per acre (du/a) that are within ½ -mile surrounding the three Blue Line stations in the SSA are as follows: Division Street: 15.4 du/a Damen Avenue: 14.1 du/a Western Avenue: 12.8 du/a All three densities are enough, by accounts of most research, to support a transit system. However, the automobile competes with transit because in many instances in Chicago car travel is a faster, more convenient and more direct means of travel. For travel to and from suburban employment locations, travel by transit may not be available. Figure 51 shows a direct comparison of mode choice to work for residents who live within ½ mile of the three Blue Line stations. Transit is also supported where a good mix of retail shops, office space, residential units and civic locations exist together in an area. Every 20 percent increase in the share of floor space that is devoted to retail and commercial activities was associated with a 4.5 percent increase in the share of trips by vanpool or transit. 13 Lastly of the D s, the walk to and from transit must be supported by well lit, well maintained sidewalks, that have pleasurable amenities along the way. This is covered above in the pedestrian environment discussion Cervero, The Transit Metropolis, Ibid. Figure 51. Mode Choice to Work Source: U.S. Census, 2000

2 85 Figure 52. Public Transportation Network Source: CTA and Metra WPB Master Plan:

3 The Bus System The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) bus lines that serve the six corridors of the SSA include: 86 Ashland Avenue Route 9 and Route X9 (express bus). SSA riders can pick-up buses along Ashland Avenue and connect with the Metra Clybourn Station at Cortland, the Red Line at Sheridan, Blue Line at Division, Green Line at Lake, and the Orange Line at Archer. Between midnight and 4:00am, Route 9 becomes Route N9 and no longer goes north toward Lakeview. Route N9 heads east on North to the Red Line at North/Clybourn. o Route 9 Operates 24 hours a day between Irving Park Road (4000 North) and 95 th Street. o Route X9 Limited stops on weekdays during am and pm rush hours between Sheridan Red Line station and 95 th. Western Avenue Routes 49 and X49 (express bus). SSA riders can pick-up buses along Western Avenue and connect with the Brown Line at Leland, Blue Line at Armitage or I-290, Pink/Blue Lines at Cermak, Orange Line at S. 49 th and PACE Bus connections at 79 th and 97 th streets. o Route 49 - Operates 24 hours a day between 79 th Street and Berwyn (5300 North) o Route X49- Limited stops on weekdays during am and pm rush hours between 97 th Street and Berwyn (5300 North). North Avenue Route 72. SSA riders can pick up buses along North Avenue and connect with the Brown & Purple lines at Sedgwick, Red Line at Clybourn, Blue Line at Damen, and PACE buses at Narragansett. Milwaukee Avenue Route 56 runs between Chicago s O Hare International Airport and Monroe Street in downtown Chicago (100 S). Route 56 essentially runs parallel to the Blue Line from Logan Square into the Loop. SSA riders can pick up service along Milwaukee Avenue and make connections to the Blue Line at numerous locations, Metra s Ogilvie Station in downtown Chicago, and the Green/Pink lines at the Clinton Station in downtown Chicago. Division Street Route 70 runs between Dearborn St. (32 West) and Austin Ave. (6000 West). SSA riders can pick up service along Division Street and connect with Red Line at Clark and the Blue Line at Ashland. Damen Avenue Route 50 runs between the Orange Line at 35 th & Archer and the Red Line at Bryn Mawr (5600 N). SSA riders can connect with the Brown Line at Leland (4700 N), Blue Line at North (1600 N), Blue Line at I-290, and the Blue/Pink Lines at Cermak (2200 S). CTA Service Provision and Measures The CTA defines routes as either Key (where service is offered seven days a week for a minimum generally of 16 hours a day) or Support (where service is market driven and justified by demand). The bus lines serving Ashland Avenue (Route 9), Western Avenue (Route 49) and North Avenue (Route 72) are Key Routes. The lines serving Ashland Avenue Express (X9), Western Avenue Express (49X), Damen Avenue (Route 50) Milwaukee Avenue (Route 56), and Division Street (Route 70) are Support Routes. The CTA has five key measures that influence fixed route service design. They are: Service Coverage to provide a maximum walk distance of ½ -mile to stops during peak periods for Key Route service. Span of Service to provide 16 hours of service per day for Key Route service, while Support Route service is determined by demand. Frequency of Service Frequency is established to provide a sufficient number of vehicles to accommodate passenger volumes at the most crowded locations during a given time period. The maximum interval for the mainline portion of bus service is 30 minutes. Passenger Flow A scheduled capacity of 60 passengers per bus at the busiest locations is used for scheduling bus frequency during peak periods. Productivity Bus productivity is reported in terms of passengers boarding per bus hour. The minimum productivity is 30 passengers boarding per bus hour when the service interval is 30 minutes. In Wicker Park Bucktown, the east/west key routes are North Avenue and Fullerton Avenue, while the north/south key routes are Western Avenue and Ashland Avenue. These bus routes are spaced 1 mile apart, providing a maximum walking distance of 1/2 mile to a bus line.

4 87 Bus Ridership Land Strategies collected daily bus line ridership data from 1999 through 2007 for all routes serving the corridors in the SSA. As illustrated in Figure 53, ridership of many of the lines has remained relatively constant, though both the North Avenue and the Division Street lines have increased in ridership significantly since 1999 the North Avenue line by 65% and the Division Street line by 93% per day. The full data set for bus line ridership is included in Table 6 in the Appendix. Figure 54 compares 2007 ridership volumes for the 8 lines that service SSA corridors, illustrating a reliance on the north-south bound routes. However, a common complaint of WPB residents, employees, and patrons is that buses are forced to travel at the same speed or even slower (due to stops) as cars during rush hour congestion. [ The bus is too slow. Bikes are faster. ] Figure 53. Daily Bus Ridership, Source: CTA Figure 54. Daily Bus Ridership by Line, 2007 Source: CTA WPB Master Plan:

5 The team collected boarding and alighting data provided by the CTA at each bus stop location in the SSA. This data is shown on Figure 55 and illustrates that the Milwaukee/ Division/Ashland and Milwaukee/ North/Damen intersections are the busiest bus boarding locations in the study area. As can be seen from the graphic, there are numerous bus stop is in the SSA that have very low boarding numbers. 88 Figure 55. Bus Boardings and Alightings Source: CTA

6 89 Bus Stop Amenities Land Strategies also collected physical bus stop data at each bus stop along the six corridors. Provisions at the stops range from a full shelter with bench seating to an un-marked location. According to the July 2001 CTA s Service Standards, bus route amenities such as bus customer shelters, benches, and electronic travel information signs are distributed by factors that consider equity in distribution throughout the service area, the utility of the benefit to the user, and site-related constraints. High consideration is given to stops on key bus routes due to a generally higher level of demand. Priority for amenities is given to stops that have: large number of passengers who board at that location, lengthy wait times between buses, high percentage of transfer passengers, and high percentage of seniors or disabled persons using it. All of the CTA s 154 bus routes are fully accessible to customers with disabilities. Lifts and ramps on all buses are available for use upon request by anyone who has trouble with steps, even temporarily. Figure 132 in the Appendix presents a breakdown of the number of bus stop facilities provided. Western Avenue, which is the second busiest line in the area, has a significant number of bus stops without shelters or benches. North Avenue has the fewest number of full bus shelters of the six corridors. Figure 56. Bus Stop Amenities Source: Field Survey WPB Master Plan:

7 The Elevated ( L ) Train [ Connectivity is great... if you re going to certain places, like O Hare or the Loop. ] There are three elevated train stations within Wicker Park and Bucktown: Ashland/Division/Milwaukee, Damen/ Milwaukee, and Western/Milwaukee. Most of the Wicker Park and Bucktown neighborhoods falls within ½ mile of one of the stations. The most recently re-constructed is the Western/Milwaukee station. As shown in Figure 133 in the Appendix, Year 2007 exhibits a slight decrease in passengers at all three stations. This may be due to the slow zones recently put in place by the CTA. These slow zones are currently being improved and will be finished by 2009 according to the CTA. 90 Figure 134 in the Appendix indicates the daily ridership at each station along the Blue Line. There are a higher number of train riders in Logan Square than in the Wicker Park/Bucktown neighborhoods. [ It s loud, dirty, inconsistent, over-crowded. I d rather ride my bike. ] Figure 57. Proximity to Blue Line Stations

8 91 The Circle Line The Circle Line is an ambitious and much needed plan by the CTA to connect the central parts of Chicago to currently inaccessible areas within the City and suburbs (via connections to Metra rail stations). The northern terminus of the Circle Line is at the North/Clybourn station of the Red Line. This line would then connect to the North/ Elston Metra rail station, to the Division/Ashland/Milwaukee Blue Line station within the SSA, to the Ashland/Lake station of the Green Line, and to additional points south to its southern terminus at the Ashland/Archer Orange Line station. The Circle Line would provide a much improved connection from WPB to neighborhoods in the north side, west side, and south side of Chicago but given the project s scale and potential cost, it is unlikely to be implemented in the short-term. Transit Incentives There are many businesses in the SSA, both large and small, that have the opportunity to reduce congestion and promote transit. Based on year 2000 census data, the neighborhoods of Wicker Park and Bucktown have approximately 6,800 employees. Approximately 71% of employees drive to the SSA, and 15% of those drivers carpool. However, this equates approximately 4,830 vehicles that require parking in the neighborhood. Of these, St. Mary s and St. Elizabeth Hospitals have about 2,000 employees who benefit from available parking on the hospital site. The remaining 3,000 plus vehicles either park on the residential streets, use a parking lot, or add to problem of parking in the under-priced metered parking spaces on the six corridors of the SSA. It must be noted that not all of these vehicles come into the neighborhood at one time, as employee shifts vary. Figure 135 in the Appendix indicates the mode of travel chosen by WPB employees. The CTA does offer a Transit Fare Benefit Program. This is a federal and state IRS approved program that allows employees to have their transit dollars spent with pre-tax income, while the employer saves paying this income tax, FICA, and unemployment taxes up to $ per year per employee. 14 This can be a significant financial savings for both employees and employers. By encouraging people to ride transit with reductions in cost, it promotes a system that benefits the environment and reduces wasted commute time and general stress levels, thereby improving worker productivity. Damen L Station. Traffic under the Kennedy. WPB Master Plan: 14

9 Transportation Demand Management [ It s a great service, but underutilized. ] Car sharing is a fairly new concept in the United States. The idea of car sharing is that users of the service can rent cars for time periods as short as thirty minutes, as opposed to the typical time period of renting a car for at least one day. Car sharing is not supposed to replace public transportation, but supplement it. There are two car service companies in Chicago, I-Go and ZipCar. I-Go is a not-for-profit company that is located in Chicago and ZipCar is a national for-profit car sharing company. Car sharing has been proven to reduce vehicle ownership. 15 Table 7 in the Appendix shows the locations of I-Go and ZipCar in WPB. Based on a meeting the project team had with Sharon Feigon, Chief Executive Officer of I-Go, one of the main hurdles the organization faces with new customers is the initial application/member fee of $75. A similar service offered in Philadelphia, PhillyCarShare, has no membership fee and has 35,000 members as of November 2007, making it the largest car sharing service in the country. It is assumed that if there was a way to reduce or remove the initial fee for I-Go and/or ZipCar, that membership would significantly increase and vehicle ownership would decrease. As car sharing becomes more popular in Wicker Park and Bucktown, the main issue that both car sharing companies will face is the availability of parking spaces in the neighborhood. Parking, both on-street and off-street in the neighborhood, is limited in supply. Even if ZipCar or I-Go pays for a dedicated parking space, the cost of that parking space will eventually be passed down to the user, raising the fees for users of the service. Metra Metra has a train station located at 2001 N. Ashland Avenue, providing suburban and downtown Chicago accessibility to the residents of Wicker Park and Bucktown. This station is at the intersection of two train routes: the Union Pacific North Line, between downtown Chicago and Kenosha Wisconsin, serving the communities along the north shore of Lake Michigan, and the Union Pacific Northwest Line between downtown Chicago and Harvard, Illinois, serving the communities of the northwest suburbs. CTA bus routes serving this station are Ashland Avenue Routes 9 and X9, Armitage Avenue Route 73, the Goose Island Express Route 132, and the Magnificent Mile Express Route 33. Figure 136 in the Appendix contains year 2002 boarding and alighting data at the Metra Clybourn Station. This data reports that most of the morning riders are either coming into or leaving the neighborhood to/from the suburbs as opposed to the City. The evening data indicates the reverse commute home, to/ from the suburbs. The evening peak also indicates that some riders come to WPB from downtown Chicago, whereas the reverse commute to downtown does not occur in the morning. 92 I-Go parking pad on North Damen Avenue. 15 San Francisco City CarShare: Travel-Demand Trends and Second-Year Impacts, Robert Cervero and Yu-Hsin Tsai, Working Paper Clybourn Metra Station.

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