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Old January 27th, 2009, 07:18 PM   #101
Chicagoago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geogregor View Post
Yes but these old networks are now more difficult to upgrade than building new networks from nothing.

For example Portland, Denver or Dallas are building quite extensive networks at the moment and those networks will be much better than Chicago system.
Right, you've got multiple cities building and expanding networks, but they're mostly light rail, and they're in a different league than Chicago or New York or Boston. It will take a long time before they're "better" than Chicago in regards to people served without having to use cars. At most of the stops in the newer systems, many many people drive to the train stations and commute. In Chicago a vast majority walk or take a bus to their local station.

Trips given per weekday:

Chicago: 708,000
Portland: 110,700
Denver: 70,400
Dallas: 71,700
St. Louis: 67,700
Houston: 40,200
Minneapolis: 35,500
Charlotte: 22,300

Chicago serves 10 times as many people as most of the newer systems.

As far as number of stations:

Chicago: 144
Portland: 64
Denver: 36
Dallas: 34
St. Louis: 37
Houston: 16
Minneapolis: 17
Charlotte: 15

Last edited by Chicagoago; January 27th, 2009 at 07:34 PM.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 08:55 PM   #102
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Lets keep in mind that parts of the EL are very old. Older in fact than most European systems and certainly not funded as well either.
I think that's the main point here. Chicago's system is almost as old as many european systems. Considering that transit here gets only a fraction of the funding as it does in Europe (and barely a nod of the head), the CTA is "not that bad".
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Old January 27th, 2009, 09:22 PM   #103
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Yeah the funding here drives me insane. I'm fairly amazed the system runs as often and as well as it does for basically being bastardized by anyone involved in any funding.

The system is underfunded by tens of millions every year, and sadly by BILLIONS in needed infrastructure upgrades.

They did an audit to find out why it's always having issues and "where's all the money going???". There were tons of people just thristy for the report so they could yell and scream about how the CTA wastes SO much money, is completely mismanged and completely corrupt.

Well the report came out by the independant auditors comparing the CTA to the other transit systems in the country, stating trends, funding and what can be inproved.

Amazingly, the CTA was at the top as far as the agency that is able to provide the most options and service for each dollar of funding it receives.

Instead of finding out where all the millions are being wasted, it was discovered that compared to other US transit, the CTA was basically running as a skeleton, providing as much service as possible with as few resources as possible.

This is why the system looks so "old school".

The state will finally give in and hand over $20 million in some given year so the agency doesn't collapse, and then people yell and scream their heads off when the CTA needs another "bailout" of $20 the next year. As if they're just throwing it all away or stealing the money. The state needs to compeletely revamp the funding structure to finally FIX the problems instead of just throwing $1 at a problem that needs $100 to correct.

As the newspapers stated it "you're putting bandaids on a gunshot wound"

They did revamp the funding structure last year - but of course our INSANE governor said he'd increase the levels of funding.....and then at the very last second said he also wanted to give free rides for every single person over the age of 65. Well boom, there goes another $35 million a year. It was silent mouths hanging open at his crazy request after 2 years of finally getting things settled..and now the CTA is broke again. Welcome to Chicago.

Last edited by Chicagoago; January 27th, 2009 at 09:27 PM.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 09:25 PM   #104
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No it is not almost as old, it is older than most european system. (I don't understand why for many people Europe = old, most european system were build after the second half of the 20th century)
Paris metro was opened 8 years after Chicago El train.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 09:31 PM   #105
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northsider View Post
I think that's the main point here. Chicago's system is almost as old as many european systems. Considering that transit here gets only a fraction of the funding as it does in Europe (and barely a nod of the head), the CTA is "not that bad".
I made my comment because someone put up some rinkydink LRTs in other cities as an example for Chicago which I thought was asinine.

Same with the age of the system thing, both were uninformed and kind of silly. Generally most people who have never been to Chicago do not realize how ambitious the system was when it opened.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 09:34 PM   #106
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The system was actually larger in the first part of the 20th century than it is today. They closed down many elevated lines shortly after WWII
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Old January 27th, 2009, 09:41 PM   #107
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^What is sad is that there was a coordinated campaign against transit.

Most towns and cities in North America dismantled their streetcars and other infrastructure because of it.

In this regard Chicago was not all that different but at least it held onto some of what it had.

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Old January 27th, 2009, 11:23 PM   #108
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Generally most people who have never been to Chicago do not realize how ambitious the system was when it opened.
Sadly, it's remained for the most part stagnant.

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No it is not almost as old, it is older than most european system. (I don't understand why for many people Europe = old, most european system were build after the second half of the 20th century)
Paris metro was opened 8 years after Chicago El train.
I thought Paris' was older than that. Guess not... Ok, is the London Underground and NYC subway the only older systems in the world? Seems hard to believe.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 11:35 PM   #109
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^Oddly enough I think Budapest is the second oldest but if not it is certainly up there.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 11:41 PM   #110
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Budapest I believe is 1896, Chicago's 'L' dates to 1892. I think Budapest is the 2nd oldest subway in the world, but I'm not sure.
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Old January 27th, 2009, 11:44 PM   #111
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^Sounds about right and the point has been made.
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Old January 28th, 2009, 05:01 AM   #112
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Chicago L train is elevated, Budapest is underground.
The first underground section for Chicago was opened in 1951.
So Budapest has an oldest subway than Chicago.

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Sadly, it's remained for the most part stagnant.

I thought Paris' was older than that. Guess not... Ok, is the London Underground and NYC subway the only older systems in the world? Seems hard to believe.
Paris metro was opened in 1900.
New York subway date of 1904, 12 years after Chicago L train,
New York had elevated train before Chicago but these aren't in service anymore.
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Old January 28th, 2009, 05:17 AM   #113
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Chicago L train is elevated, Budapest is underground.
The first underground section for Chicago was opened in 1951.
So Budapest has an oldest subway than Chicago.
I think we are getting confused with what we are talking about. I am talking about heavy rail transit (subway, elevated, or grade). In Chicago and NY the first rail networks happened to be elevated, in Boston they were subways, etc. True enough, Chicago's first subway (State St) opened in 1943, but passenger service on a heavy rail network dates to 1892 (South Side Elevated)
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Old January 30th, 2009, 04:29 PM   #114
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It's a difficult task to decide when the first urban heavy rail network opened in a city: for example, despite what people usually think, the first urban network in Paris opened in 1862 with the inner ring line (closed in 1937). It did not begin with the opening of the Métro in 1900. There is the same problem in NYC with El vs Subway.
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Old January 30th, 2009, 04:43 PM   #115
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That's what I'm trying to find out. NYC's lines date to before the creation of the MTA, and similarly Chicago's 'L' dates to well before the creation of the CTA. I had thought that Pari's was much older than 1900
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Old March 19th, 2009, 06:41 PM   #116
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Looks like slow zones have actually increased in the past few months! Blame winter. The weather really plays havoc on our system. But I'm looking forward to continued work on the slow zones!

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/l...,1479082.story
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Old March 27th, 2009, 05:20 PM   #117
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Originally Posted by jimbojoe45 View Post
Looks like slow zones have actually increased in the past few months! Blame winter. The weather really plays havoc on our system. But I'm looking forward to continued work on the slow zones!

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/l...,1479082.story
But at least it only crept up from 7% to 8%! Hopefully they get things fixed again this summer. They blamed most of the issue on the fact it's hard to do work in the winter when there's a half meter of snow on the ground and it can get down to -25C.
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Old March 27th, 2009, 05:25 PM   #118
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I see in the 3rd quarter of 2008 ridership was:

680,000 trips per weekday.

Ridership has actually increased from 120,000,000 trips in the late 90's to 200,000,000 in 2008. That's pretty good growth for such an old system. Around 66%.
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Old March 27th, 2009, 06:13 PM   #119
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I posted this on the fantasy thread. But I figured you guys would appreciate it as well. It's my dream for the CTA..I can dream can't I.

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Old March 28th, 2009, 01:46 AM   #120
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That would be a kick-ass system.

The changes you propose would: allow commuters to take CTA rail around the city without having to transfer in the Loop, and connect CTA rail with Metra rail. Those are the two biggest flaws in Chicago's rail system.
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