I have said it before that these new speed cameras Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel wanted to so desperately have to protect school children was just another revenue generating scam to relieve the average citizens of tens of millions of dollars from their pocket books. Well, now that the first of these cameras have been strategically positioned to protect those precious children my assertion has been confirmed. At least with the one on the North-Side of the city at the intersection of Pulaski Road and Foster Avenue. And believe me when I say this - I am more than well acquainted with the area because I attended Alessandro Volta Elementary School which is the nearest Chicago Public School and/or Private Institution to that intersection.
While the the attendance boundaries may have changed some since I last went there, I still know that there is no school crossing at the intersection of Pulaski and Foster. Period! Matter of fact, even an argument of a park being there is kind of stretch because that little triangular strip that is technically part of the park is not an area kids would frequent or play at.
It is basically a fricking CTA bus stop!
Sure there is a Little Gomp's and Big Gomp's but the entrances and paths which connect the two sides of Gompers Park are two blocks to the south and about eight blocks to the west. So if Rahm Emanuel really wanted to protect the kids at Gompers Park then the ideal location for a speed camera would be at the intersection of Keeler and Foster Avenues.
Now there is another park as well. Eugene Field (which like Gomp's is divided by a winding North Branch of the Chicago River) but its entrance is at Avers and Foster Avenues. That makes it four blocks to the east of these new speed cameras. Yes the Eugene Field Athletic Field and Picnic Area faces Foster Avenue and extends eastward from Avers to just before Central Park Avenues, but there are no schools on Foster Avenue all the way from Gompers Park To Eugene Field! So a camera at Pulaski and Foster does nothing for kids at the park.
And as I said earlier, the nearest school to those speed cameras is Volta Elementary which is located at Avers and Argyle Avenues. And that is more than a half-mile from the intersection in question and since all foot traffic to the school would have to go southward from Foster Avenue there is absolutely no need for a speed camera to be placed where they are if this initiative is solely about child safety.
So those Gompers Park Speed Cameras are a scam.
But I have written about this before. Child safety appears to be the last thing the mayor of Chicago is looking at with these cameras, especially the one's at Pulaski and Foster. Unless of course Rahm Emanuel is somehow worried about the ghosts of long dead corpses from the Bohemian National Cemetery having trouble crossing the road to attend classes at Volta Elementary School?
This is nothing more than a fast cash grab to infuse city coffers.
So you see Mister Mayor I feel very comfortable calling you out on this one. I am, however, sure that the reason you had workers install those cameras where you did was because vehicular traffic at that intersection has been known to be troublesome over the years. Again, I am very familiar with that location as I still go through it occasionally.
But I must admit that I prefer taking Peterson Avenue whenever coming to the old neighborhood to see the family doctor. And guess what? The intersection of Peterson and Pulaski have long had red light cameras installed there, but at least there is actually a high school on the northeast corner to justify this rationale that it is about child safety. Although I suspect nabbing a few startled drivers whenever the Fire Department traps cars in the middle of the intersection while backing-up their emergency vehicles less than a quarter block away brings in a decent amount of funny money for the city.
But Pulaski and Foster? Child Safety? Yeah - Not So Much!
So why don't you just admit that the real intent here is to catch as many speeders as possible and make an insane profit while doing so Mister Mayor? Now I am sure most folks would agree that those who routinely speed or blow off red lights should be fined. But come on at least tell the truth man! People would understand that.
But until you do - those Gompers Park Speed Cameras are a scam!
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Tags: Alessandro Volta Elementary School, Big Gomp's, Bohemian National Cemetery, Chicago, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Chicago Political Commentary, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Transit Authority, Child Safety and Speed Cameras, City of Chicago, City of Chicago Speed Cameras, CTA, CTA Bus Stop, CTA Turnaround, Eugene Field, Gompers Park, Gompers Park Speed Cameras, Headline News, Little Gomp's, News and Opinion, North Branch of the Chicago River, Op Ed, Pulaski Road and Foster Avenue, Pulaski Road and Peterson Avenue, Rahm Emanuel, Speed Cameras, Traffic Control, Volta Elementary School