In comprehensive cover story reminiscent of the Chicago Reader of old, Ed Zotti tells us unabashedly “How to Fix the El” — and has many good ideas. His only downfall is that he’s trying to be very comprehensive in a CTA planning world that is focused on just the area north of Belmont on the Red and Purple lines.
And doesn’t that seem like a stupid criticism on my part? He’s too “comprehensive.” But right now, CTA planners have their blinders on and, more importantly, they only have funding to tackle those problems north of Belmont.
So Zotti’s idea to run the Red and Purple lines alterrnately every three
minutes, and to run the Purple into the State Street tunnel may fall on
deaf ears at the CTA, where they are focused on the north end of the
busiest rail line.
My other quibble with Zotti’s piece is that he
only tangentially touched on the alternatives for the Red and Purple
Modernization project, without providing his own views on what he thinks
works best. While Zotti may think he knows how to fix the L, the fact
remains there’s a whole lot of fixing to do on the North Side as well.
Overall, Zotti may be on to something with his ideas, but there still are some kinks to work out, such as where/whether to turn around the Purple Line train and send it back north, and what to do about the Clark Junction choke point.
Give his piece and read and let us know what you think. We’ll have at least one guest post later in the week with another take on the proposal.