Monday, October 29, 2007

Save the CTA!

If you live in Illinois, please take a minute to visit Save Chicagoland Transit today. The Act Now page lets you send an e-mail to our state legislature and tells you how to call your representatives in Springfield.

A week from tomorrow, the first round of Chicago Transit Authority "doomsday cuts" go into effect. That's going to make for an awful lot of really cranky people when their morning commutes are mucked up. Mr. Tangerine's regular bus route isn't being discontinued, but another popular route that ends up in the same part of the Loop is being cut. Many of the people who rely on that bus route will be walking a few blocks to take Mr. Tangerine's bus route instead, which means extra crowding and longer waits all around.

If the legislature continues to underfund the CTA, another round of "doomsday cuts" is scheduled to hit in January. At that time, every Lake Shore Drive express bus route will vanish, along with routes serving every part of the city—more than half of all routes, in fact. If you think the El is too slow or too crowded now, imagine what it will be like when many thousands of stranded bus riders take to the rails. Traffic is bound to get worse as those with cars bite the bullet and swamp downtown parking garages by driving to work when the CTA becomes too big of a hassle.

It's ridiculous, really—the city is bidding to host the 2016 Olympics, and the state of Illinois can't summon up the political will to fund Chicago's transit system?

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