Wednesday, October 25, 2017

98th and Winchester update #3

I previously posted about a sinkhole at 98th and Winchester that wasn't properly covered, creating a hazard.

Last night there was a bigger steel plate and construction horses, forcing traffic around the plate. This morning there was a crew working to fix the sinkhole - yeah!!!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Vincennes update

I posted recently about a hazard created by a half-finished project along the Vincennes bike lane.  A few days I noticed that one of the spots was fixed. I took a trip over the weekend and confirmed that ALL the trenches have been filled. 

Thank you to Alderman Brookins and CDOT for taking care of this hazard..

Friday, October 20, 2017

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Major Taylor Trail ride on Sat. 10/21

Join us for a bike ride on Sat. 10/21.

Facebook event link - please respond here to let us know you're coming!

Link for Wild Blossom grand opening, including ticket info.

98th St. - belated work or traffic calming?

It's been about 2 months since 98th St. from Damen to Hoyne was ground down for repaving. Is this intended to be a permanent traffic calming measure or will we see new pavement before winter?

98th and Winchester update #2

It's been a week and the plate is already starting to move. Soon the sinkhole will be uncovered again. There are no bolts holding it in place, only the ridge of asphalt. Why can't they put some bolts in already?

I got a response from the alderman's office yesterday. This morning I found that the plate had been moved. There's a ridge of asphalt around it. Can't tell if they anchored it with any bolts, but I'm guessing that they didn't. We'll see how long this lasts before the plate moves again.

If you're passing through the intersection of 98th and Winchester in the near future, watch out for this.

A sinkhole opened up recently.  The city obviously knows about it, because it got covered by a steel plate. Unfortunately they didn't properly secure the plate - in this intersection with no stop signs and plenty of speed-through traffic - so the plate shifted. This is how it looked around 6 p.m. on Thursday night.

I emailed this to the alderman's office first this this morning, but they're taking a 4-day weekend, so nobody responded to email or a phone call attempt. I reported it through 311, but I'm not counting on anyone getting to it right away.

Use caution if you're walking, biking, jogging or driving through this intersection.  Hitting this the wrong way could cause serious injuries.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

hazard in Vincennes bike lane - or - a job half done

A few weeks ago, I spotted something on my Metra ride home that was baffling and disappointing.

In some spots along the east side of Vincennes, there are little areas of concrete that aren't connected by any sidewalk. They look like they might have been bus stops at some point. Are these used at all now, or are they just remnants?

One of several new ADA ramps with unfilled trenches in the northbound bike lane
At several locations along the northbound side of Vincennes from 95th to 89th, new ADA curb ramps were installed at these concrete remnants. There's a narrow trench along the right edge of the bike lane at each of these locations. Someone threw a bit of loose asphalt in the trench right at the bumpy part of the ramp, but the rest of each trench is unfilled - a potential hazard if someone riding in the bike lane doesn't see it before they hit it.

The thing that makes it more baffling is that the curb ramp installations on the west side of the street were completed with asphalt that was properly packed down, as seen in the photo below.

Vincennes at 89th St
I reported this to contacts at CDOT and never got any response. This week I reported it again - to CDOT and the 21st ward office. No response so far.

C'mon folks, can't this job be finished properly before winter to eliminate this hazard? Please make the northbound Vincennes bike lane safe again before we reach days of early darkness, when those most likely to get hurt are low income people of color who are riding for transportation.

If you're bothered by this, please share - on Twitter, Facebook or both. If you ride Vincennes or live in the 21st ward, please contact the 21st ward office.

Dan Ryan Woods habitat restoration workday on Sat. 10/14

It's great to get outside. Come out and volunteer at Dan Ryan Woods this Saturday 10/14 from 9:00 am-noon for Friends of the Forest Preserves' monthly habitat restoration workday.

Tools, gloves, and training provided. If you have work gloves you like, bring those. Wearing hiking boots or work boots is recommended.

Meet at the 91st St. parking lot (just north of the 91st St. Metra station).  Please contact Benjamin Cox at 773-398-1178 or for more information and to let him know if you plan to attend.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

a missed opportunity on 91st St.

After all the water and sewer work along 91st St. this summer, I hoped that the traffic diverter that was temporarily removed at 91st and Leavitt might be replaced with a smarter, more bike friendly design. Nope, same old STOOPID design.

These openings are wide enough for a confident bike rider, or perhaps a less confident one when the pavement is clean and in good condition. For a less confident rider in less favorable conditions, or for a senior riding a utility trike, these are less than adequate. A number of seniors in our neighborhood ride utility trikes like this one below for basic transportation. They should be able to ride safely through this intersection and others with diverters.

These Portland examples are much more suitable for accommodating bike traffic.

When infrastructure like these traffic diverters gets removed for construction, there should be an opportunity for public input for potential improvement.  We definitely need to see improvement at 93rd and Damen and at 94th and Leavitt whenever water and sewer work reaches those locations.

I'd love it if the diverter at 94th and Leavitt could be moved to 93rd. The fact that so much traffic is concentrated at 94th, only 1 block from the stoplight at 95th, causes a LOT of traffic conflict and often creates hazardous conditions for cyclists. This is one of only 2 direct street crossings with stoplights to get across 95th, so it's very important for bike use - and for everyone else trying to get across 95th.

Friday, October 6, 2017

household hazardous waste collection this Saturday 10/7

Beverly Unitarian Church will host a collection of household electronics and hazardous waste in the church parking lot, at 103rd and Seeley, tomorrow - Sat. 10/7, 8:30 to 11 a.m.

This event is sponsored by the church’s Green Sanctuary Group and Beverly Bank. Donations are encouraged to help cover costs. 

Accepted items include computers, monitors, printers, small electronics, TVs under 35 inches, cell phones and pagers. Hazardous items must be properly sealed and include mercury fluorescent bulbs, anti-freeze, used motor oil, oil based paints, batteries, lawn chemicals, pool chemicals and solvents.

Beverly Art Walk is happening on Sat. 10/7

Yes, there's a LOT happening tomorrow.

You can find a full program for Beverly Art Walk venues and programs here.

habitat restoration workday at Whistler Woods Sat. 10/7

It's great to get outdoors. Volunteers are needed this Saturday 10/7 from 10 am to 1 pm for a habitat restoration workday - seed gathering.  Light snacks and water will be available.

Hiking boots or other boots or shoes that offer good support and traction are a good idea. When you arrive, look for volunteers along the lefthand side of the main parking lot, near the end of the parking lot. If you have work gloves, bring them, otherwise gloves will be available.  

How to get there:   Whistler Woods is just east of 13400 S Halsted in Riverdale.

By bike: if you're coming from the north, ride the Major Taylor Trail south until it ends in Whistler Woods and continue to the parking lot to find the volunteers.

By car: take Halsted to Forestview (13400S) - parking lot is the first left turn after you turn east onto Forestview.

From I-57, exit at eastbound 127th, then turn right on Halsted, then continue to 13400S and follow the directions above.

From I-94, exit at westbound 130th.  Continue past the viaduct, right (northbound) on Indiana, then continue left on 127th. Follow the directions above.

By transit:  Pace 352 Halsted bus

non sequitur Friday

Sunday, October 1, 2017

coffee with a cop

If you'd like an opportunity to have a conversation with 22nd district commander and other officers, come to Bridgeport Coffee (9135 S Western) on Wed. 10/4 from 9 am to 10 am.