Neighbors complain about CTA workers parking illegally

For more than a year now CTA contractors working to build a new power substation on the Red Line at Farwell and Glenwood have parked illegally on sidewalks and side streets near the construction site.

The neighbors finally have had enough and taken to EveryBlock to complain about workers’ cars blocking sidewalks and making it difficult for garbage trucks and school buses to traverse the narrow, snow-clogged streets of Farwell and Glenwood avenues.

CTA workers parked on sidewalks under the Red Line viaduct at Farwell. (DNAinfo Chicago photo)

CTA workers parked on sidewalks under the Red Line viaduct at Farwell. (DNAinfo Chicago photo)

On EveryBlock, Michael Pollard, a nearby Rogers Park resident, called the illegal parking a “double standard for CTA construction crew,” and said him and neighbors were “disturbed and upset by the fact the contractors working on the red line improvements are all parking illegally around the Morse Red line station. Glenwood, Farwell, etc. . . . There is plenty of parking at Howard garage, take the train ride a bike or pay to park like the rest of us.”

Workers on the Red Line Farwell substation park illegally along the Glenwood CTA embankment.

Workers on the Red Line Farwell substation park illegally along the Glenwood CTA embankment. (Photo by Michael Pollard)

This post caught the attention of DNAinfo Chicago reporter Benjamin Woodward, who asked the CTA about it:

“The parking of vehicles on sidewalks is not allowed, and we’ll be working with them to find alternative parking,” said Lambrini Lukidis, a CTA spokeswoman.

Peter Scales, a CDOT spokesman, said the workers “will have to move their vehicles.”

On Friday morning, the day after the DNAinfo story was published, CTA Tattler found trucks still parked along the embankment, but not on the sidewalk.

Workers were still parked illegally by the embankment Friday, but not on the sidewalk. (CTA Tattler photo)

Workers were still parked illegally by the embankment Friday, but not on the sidewalk. (CTA Tattler photo)

A worker quoted by DNAinfo said he was allowed to park there under an agreement with the city.

“See this vest,” the worker said, pointing to a neon safety vest on his dashboard, “that shows I’m not just someone from the neighborhood trying to score a free parking spot.”

What’s your opinion? Should the workers be allowed to park illegally as long as they don’t keep other vehicles from getting by them?


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  • Everyone who works in the city of Chicago has to find their own parking. Why should these city workers be any different? Chicago has one of the best transit systems in the world. Why should these people get free parking when no one else does and the city and cta is broke.

  • fb_avatar

    Big discussion on Everyblock: not going well.

  • Did anyone call the cops, or are they just complaining on blogs?

    Even the assistant of Ald. Tom Tunney eventually got busted for using a fraudulent parking pass.

  • fb_avatar

    This construction has been going on for over a year. I live near the area and haven't experienced any inconvenience. All of a sudden this NIMBY contingent wants to raise a stink? Ridiculous. Whatever the improvements the CTA is working on, they're well worth it. These people need to settle down. Seriously.

  • In reply to AWilde:


  • Why don't these people call the cops or go tell their alderman? What does posting on EveryBlock do?

  • In reply to chris:

    Especially since Joe Moore is undoubtedly avoiding blogs after making a fool of himself on Chicago Political Commentary.

  • In reply to jack:

    Where doesn't Moore make a fool of himself?

  • For punishment they will have to help the operators/motormen clean their trains.

  • If they really have to drive, they should park at Howard and take the train to work.

  • This is much ado about nothing. A bunch of whiny complainers with too much time on their hands. If the shoe was on the other foot, the whiners and crybabies would be triple and quadruple parked, squeezing their bicycles in between.

    These guys need to park near the job. Their tools and other necessities are in their vehicles. There is nothing in the city code that demands enforcement. Enforcement is selective and discretionary.

    As former mayor Daley would say, "this is silly, just silly, silly".

  • "Just someone from the neighborhood." Think about that. If you're just someone from the neighborhood, parking is something you're not entitled to except as you pay or run the risk of "gotcha" during street-cleaning season and sticker time. And regular folks from the neighborhood, especially the ones with no cars, never have anything to carry? But if you have the Vest you are Special, unlike mere citizens. You are entitled to a free spot. And any hazards you may create, somehow don't count.

    Oh, yeah, enforcement is selective. We know that. We're saying that's not always right. Giving someone a break in a special situation is not the same thing as creating a privileged class or extending it beyond emergency responders or work vehicles to those who would like to hitch a free ride on that concept even though they don't come under it. True selective enforcement would be, for example, parking box personnel not giving tickets for the few seconds it takes people to get from their car to the box to pay. From what I've heard, that's too selective for some of them.

    I am automatically suspicious of the characterization of anyone raising an issue of fairness and legality as "whiners and crybabies." It strikes me as too easily dismissive, a way to sidestep judgment on the merits. I also dislike the assumption that all the rest of us are ready to violate the law so that makes it OK for them. Not true. In fact, Mr. Clout, your "shoe on the other foot" comparison doesn't even make sense. When would we be doing that?

  • As long as we are talking about parking, I am getting sick and tired of cabs, livery drivers and regular people parking their vehicles in bus stop zones in the city. This is a regular occurence at one of the bus stops I take daily. I have complained to the city a number of times and nothing gets dones about it.

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