The Active Transportation Alliance put some good thought into a Sustainable Transportation Platform, and it's asking all the mayoral candidates to sign on to it. And you can too right here.
UPDATE: This platform was a group effort by the following organizations. My apologies for implying it was done solely by Active Transportation Alliance.
Active Transportation Alliance; Center for Neighborhood Technology; Environmental Law & Policy Center; Illinois PIRG; Metropolitan Planning Council; Midwest High Speed Rail Association; Natural Resources Defense Council; Respiratory Health Association of Metropolitan Chicago.
Here are the platform recommendations, with bolding on those related to public transportation.
"The platform recommends ten key transportation priorities for the
next mayor to put Chicago on the path to a smarter and more sustainable
future. Here's an overview of the ten key recommendations."
- Make Chicago the most bike-friendly city in the nation
- Work to increase transit funding, riders and efficiency
- Expand rail service on CTA and Metra
- Add bus rapid transit lines
- Support expansion of car sharing
- Design streets that are safe and convenient for all users
- Make Chicago the hub for a Midwest high speed rail network
- Improve the Lakefront Trail system
- Make Chicago's roads and sidewalks safer for pedestrians
- Support transit-oriented development
Check the jump for detailed strategies on the bolded recommendations.
Recommendation: Support policies that will increase overall transit funding and promote reforms that ensure funds are spent more efficiently.
- Champion legislation to increase the state gas tax and use new revenues to support transit and other non-road projects. Illinois' gas tax is one of the lowest in the nation, and it has not increased since 1990.
- Advocate for a more equitable distribution of transportation funds by the Illinois Department of
Transportation than the current 45/55 state split between the Chicago region and downstate.
- Launch efforts that actively encourage Chicago businesses to offer pre-tax transit benefits to their
employees, which will incentivize commuting by transit while reducing firms' taxable payroll.
- Promote better coordination between transit agencies, such as unified transit fares and funding allocations that are based on what's best for the region rather than a pre-set formula.
Recommendation: Work with the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA), CTA, Metra and
state and federal officials to secure funding for new and more frequent rail service.
Recommendation: Support CTA's plan for city-wide bus rapid transit.
- Create and test BRT routes on arterials where BRT can have the greatest impact.
Recommendation: Empower the Chicago Department of Transportation to quickly implement Complete Streets to benefit all Chicagoans, and incorporate context sensitive planning to encourage public engagement and solutions tailored to local circumstances.
- Complete implementation of on-going sidewalk accessibility improvements.
- Encourage aldermen to use "menu" money for projects that benefit cyclists, pedestrians and transit users.
Recommendation: Actively encourage compact mixed-use development within a one-half-mile radius around rail, BRT and major bus interchanges.
- Expedite approvals and reduce parking requirements for transit-oriented development (TOD) to help create mixed housing-and-retail centers anchored by transit.
- Prioritize economic development efforts that take advantage of infill opportunities near rail stations, BRT stops and major bus interchanges.
- Encourage or require TODs to include car-sharing spaces in their plans to facilitate low car ownership rates within TODs.