Bus-time arrival signs to glow at 400 shelters within a year

About 400 bus shelters will sport next-bus arrivals signs by September 2012, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced Friday. The first 150 signs will be installed at the busiest bus stops by March. The 400 shelters cover about 20 percent of the total number of shelters, but cover almost 80 percent of the CTA bus ridership, said President Forrest Claypool.

The CTA is paying for the signs with $1.4 million of its own funds, $1.8 million from a Regional Transportation Authority grant, and another $640,000 in federal transit funds.

View an interactive map of the location of the first 150 locations; or see a list of locations.

It’s clear that Emanuel and Claypool are trying to make the CTA experience more pleasant and convenient – as shown by this initiative, and the station renewal program.

The first arrival sign was installed in Kenwood. (Chicago Tribune photo by Zbigniew Bzdak)


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  • Not one on Clark St.
    Once again, one of the busiest & worst bus routes in the city is dumped on again!

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    While it seems like (from the Passenger Report) that about 22,000 a day use Clark, one has to also figure that the 80/20 rule is a conventional rule of marketing,* many of the stops are multiple route one, and since there was an effort to placate each aldercreature, the ones in the Lake Shore wards are on Inner LSD or Sheridan.

    If one wants to be picky, most on the South Side are on north-south streets, and very few on east-west ones, even though those roules have very heavy ridership. For instance, only 4 on 79, 3 on 55, and 2 on 63. (Yes, I did click at the top of the column to sort the routes).

    Also, given the numbers here, compared to the prior story on this subject, CTA must have exercised its option, and upped this project from 160 signs to 400 and the expenditure from $1.6 million to $3.9 million.

    If 66 is that heavy, at least I find the 80/20 apportionment reasonable at the moment.
    *Explains why many former Amoco stations are now Gas Depot.

  • In reply to jack:

    Well, Broadway uses Clark St. from Division to Diversey.
    There also aren't any on Broadway, which is another disaster of a route.

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    You guys need to relax a bit. There are 400 shelters getting the signs, and only 150 of them have been identified. Why not wait till you see where the other 250 bus stop are, and maybe then start complaining about which have been left out.

  • In reply to Kevin O’Neil:

    You're forgetting that Clark was late to the party for Bus Tracker. That was because the CTA was so embarrassed by the wretchedness of service on Clark, they delayed it as long as possible. Remember Carole Brown's ridiculous excuse, they had to tweak the way the software predicted where a bus would be?
    Common sense would have had at least one shelter on the north half of NB Clark getting it in the first batch. Maybe Ridge or Devon.
    That's where the worst problem is, NB Clark, north of Addison.

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    Well, find the alderman for that area and have him or her request removing the LSD ones from that ward.

    Traffic on Clark being all fouled up may be a reason for having the predictor there, but also seems a valid reason for having more trouble making the predictor work there.

  • If "you guys" refer to me, I wasn't.

    But at least you clarified that this was the 150/400.

  • $3.8M for something you can already do on your smartphone, or by text message? And of course the money's going to the crooked connected company that got the original deal in the first place. What's the point?

    And how many beat cops could we have hired with this money instead? It's not like Chicago has a crime problem or anything...

  • In reply to darkwing:

    The point is that yuppies assume that all CTA riders have smartphones, and that they won't be stolen if someone whips one out at a bus stop.

    Also, you are assuming that city police money was applied here. There is nothing in the above story to indicate that, nor that the RTA or FTA money could have been diverted to police.

    The insider contract point may have merit, though.

    People accuse me of being a malcontent, but at least I think about what I post.

  • In reply to jack:

    Obviously you didn't spend nearly enough time thinking before posting that one. Where, precisely, did I suggest that city money was diverted to this project? Rather, I suggested that CTA's portion of this project is wasted, and would be better spent by CPD. I apologize if that point was too subtle for you.

    I didn't think it necessary to mention it explicitly, but I guess I should also point out that you can access the various trackers from your plain old PC -- like the one you're using right now. (Some pseudo-urban bohemian you turned out to be, eh?)

  • In reply to darkwing:

    No, you are the one who was out to lunch.

    The last I heard, CTA was still a separate accounting entity from the City, and hence, other than by making a donation it could not afford, is not in a position to take care of the City's tab for cops.

    Also, sure I know that Bus Tracker can be accessed by a PC. I'm not taking my PC to a bus shelter, though.Also, my internet cable isn't that long.

    Don't try calling me out.

  • In reply to jack:

    Nice try -- I'll take your attempt at a dodge as an admission that my point was in fact too subtle for you. Too bad. (Though I find it interesting that you cry poverty when we're talking about cutting some additional spending. You're more than happy to take other people's money, but you're not so happy to let it go again, huh?)

    Again I apologize -- I again didn't think I needed to mention explicitly that most folks would be smart enough to check Bus Tracker from their home or office, *then* head down to the stop. Perhaps this winter you'll notice how the bus stop suddenly fills up a couple of minutes before it arrives. (And, if you listen carefully, you'll hear them snickering at the snow-covered yutz who's been there for ages.)

    Calling you out? More like disagreeing with you. Don't be so sensitive, chief.

  • In reply to darkwing:

    Let me put it this way.

    Anonymous can verify that I can vouch for the following:

    You have a First Amendment Right to post anonymously.

    Also, it doesn't seem to bother you that you use it to make a fool of yourself.

    If you can't grasp the concept of a bus stop next bus sign, which it appears you can't, go down to Cottage Grove and 47th or 79th (two of the places on the list) and see how many people have smart phones they want to display to the public or are just leaving the office.

  • In reply to jack:

    I'm sorry, "Jack", why are you blathering on about anonymity?

    Conveniently, you forgot (again) about texting, as well as checking at, um, home -- not a lot of offices down that way. (And buses don't tend to bunch down there as badly as they do on your beloved, lily-white stretches of Clark. Less people getting on with purse dogs and clogging up the works, I guess.)

    But thanks for (eventually) exposing your true motivation here: you want to feel just a little bit better about yourself for helping the "less fortunate", and you insist on spending other people's money to do it. Got it.

  • In reply to darkwing:

    No, it is just that you don't get the concept.

    Maybe what CTA should do, despite all good marketing principles, is not put them downtown, but on the outskirts, since obviously, by your logic, downtown doesn't need them, but North Clark.does.

    Just admit that you don't understand the concept of bus shelter signs and move on.

  • In reply to darkwing:

    So to summarize, "Jack", you really only know how to say three things:

    - "I hate yuppies!"
    - "Black people!"
    - "Other people's money! Gimme gimme gimme!"

    What a tool.

  • In reply to darkwing:

    I don't have a smartphone because I can't afford one or the obscenely priced data plan.
    I also don't text.
    Most people I know don't have smartphones.
    jack is correct, you Yuppies have to stop making assumptions about the rest of us.

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    Of course -- you criticize me for supposedly making assumptions by making quite a few of your own. Normally I'd assume you were just being ironic, but in your case it seems more likely that you're just rhetorically deficient. Maybe that's why you're poor?

  • And now you're making more assumptions.
    Here's something that's not an assumption: You're an a*!
    And Kevin, don't waste your time scolding me for calling him a name. The name is correct!

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    How does it feel to be smacked so resoundingly by someone you assume, for no particular reason at all, to be a yuppie? No wonder you're upset.

    Maybe next time, you could try behaving like an adult and discussing the matter at hand, yeah? I promise, that'll keep your feelings from getting hurt.

  • In reply to darkwing:

    My feelings weren't hurt, but you're still an a*.

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    Better that than wrong, eh? (And unoriginal to boot. How unfortunate.)

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    No scolding, I just edited your name-calling comment.

    Let's all take some deep breaths here.

  • To respond to your obviously racist remarks about "lily white stretches of Clark", I regularly ride the #4 Cottage Grove bus & it does nothing but bunch up south of 35th St & does so in both directions. I once waited for a SB #4 at Jackson for 45 minutes. At the point the street corner supervisor listened to us & changed a #3 to a #4. This happened after 8 #3s & no #4s.
    As it goes all the way to 95th St, it's one of the longest runs in the city & having to operate on Michigan through downtown makes it worse.
    I consider it to be the worst of all north south routes on the South Side.

    And where exactly is Clark "lily white"?
    Certainly not from Bryn Mawr north to Howard, which has increasingly large numbers of blacks & Hispanics living there.

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    So, just to be clear, you're assuming -- oops, there you go again! -- that you know what jack's talking about, then jumping into the conversation for no particularly good reason.

    If you had bothered to read more carefully -- not that I was expecting you two -- you would have notice that it was jack, not I, who played the "Cottage Grove" card. All I did was to call him out on his "I'm talking about black people, your argument is invalid" nonsense. (The same way I called you out on your "I'm poor, your argument is invalid" nonsense. Remember?)

  • In reply to darkwing:

    I never said I'm poor, I said I can't afford a smartphone. There's a difference.
    I have a mortgage, taxes & family.
    There have been cutbacks where I work, so there's less money.
    I carefully choose where I spend it & a smartphone ain't cutting it! You see, I lived for 50 years without any cellphone & I still only have a simple one for emergencies. I'm not one of you yungins that has to be connected 24 hours a day.

    You said: "And buses don't tend to bunch down there as badly as they do on your beloved, lily-white stretches of Clark. Less people getting on with purse dogs and clogging up the works, I guess.".
    You're referring to Cottage Grove, which is why I wrote about it.

    I've never seen anyone on the bus with a "purse dog" in my life.
    In fact, that type of person usually has a smart card, like I do & we board faster. Most of the people on the South Side use swipe cards or even slower, pay with cash.
    Why don't you do what I do, & ride there some time?
    You'll find you're in another world, a world of truly poor people who are forced to rely on the increasingly rotten CTA service for all transportation!

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    tl;dr: "I'm old and cranky and desperately want people on the Internet to pay attention to me! Listen to my off-topic anecdotes! Wear an onion on your belt!"

    You're now entirely off-topic and beginning to get incoherent, which is a sure sign that I've wasted too much time on you already. Goodbye.

  • No, you're the one who is incoherent with his refusal to respond to be called out on your lies.

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