Gov. Patrick Quinn annointed Jerome Stermer as his Chief of Staff today. I know Stermer as the President of Voices for Illinois Children and while it may not seem like an obvious victory for our work, Mr. Stermer has participated in Metropolis 2020's Regional Partnership meetings that have focused on transportation. He has supported transit and understands the importance of good design. In addition, Quinn also appointed natural resources professional and conservationist Marc Miller as director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Mr. Miller has been a friend to trails and bicycle facilities within the department for years.
Gov. Quinn also demonstrates with these choices, that he is looking for good people to fill positions that will embody accountability, commitment and passion. It may take a while for the leadership and passion to trickle down to other layers, but we are very excited at these early appointments. Just imagine what it would be like if the governor chose a pro-bicycle, pro-pedestrian and pro-transit Chief of Staff for IDOT to go as a match with Secretary Milt Sees experience and knowledge. That could be some team to get behind.
The 2009 TyK Bike Chick Pinup Calendar lets you remember every day how fun it is to be a woman and a cyclist.
The calendar features one woman with her bike every month in a classic 1950s style photo and an accompanying “reality” photo of how you would see her on a normal day. “The TyK Pinup Calendar reveals and revels in the multiple identities every woman can embody.”
Party with the pinups at two upcoming events:
This Friday, Feb. 6: “Going to Press” Party. 6-9 p.m. at the Green Eye on Milwaukee and Armitage. There will be prints of all 12 pinups and the accompanying “reality” photos.
Next Friday, Feb. 13: Bike Winter Art Show. 6 p.m. at the Flatiron Arts Building, 1579 North Milwaukee Avenue. The calendars go on sale here.
You can also purchase the calendars at bike shops, coffee shops, bookstores and boutiques throughout Chicago and online.
Proceeds for all sales of the TyK Pinup Calendars to the Chicago Women’s Health Center. TyK Works to raise women's awareness of their strength and femininity while providing a supportive and informative community.
The Tribune reported that Chicago unanimously voted to increase the fine for driving while using a hand-held cell phone from $75 to $100. In addition, the fee for using the phone while at the time of a crash will rise from $200 to $500.
This is good news, I supposed.
Better news would be banning all cell phone use - hands free or otherwise - entirely. More important than your hands on the wheel is your mind on the road and on those near you.
The Mayor's Office of Special Events is gearing up for the 19th Annual Bike Chicago program and we invite you to join in the fun! Bike Chicago is a five-month (May-September) celebration of Chicago’s commitment to become more bicycle friendly and environmentally conscious.
Last year's program was a huge success promoting more than 100 cycling activities on our website, www.bikechicago.us. Events included clinics, neighborhood rides, races and architectural tours.
New this year, we are accepting all bike event submission on our website. Please go here to submit your biking events by Monday, March 2. (The link to submit events is also available on our website -- www.bikechicago.us)
We look forward to helping you promote your biking event. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me.
Here's to a great summer!
Bike Chicago Coordinator
Mayor's Office of Special Events
On Sunday morning the Trail was clear from Ardmore to just before the South Shore Cultural Center (71st Street). There was a terrible amount of ice (although I understand that it is better than it was) on both sides of the entrance to the Cultural Center. Please be very careful if you ride in this area.
There were loads of runners using the Oak Street Bend and the section from the Bend to Ohio Street. The stretch north of Ohio Street looked a bit slippery yet so I took the Ohio Street underpass to Inner Lake Shore Drive to the Oak Street underpass. My ride was just after sunrise so more snow may have melted and made this area better later in the day.
I looked at most of the underpasses and they all seemed clear.
We are supposed to stay below freezing for the next couple of days so please watch for ice on the Trail as the melting snow put plenty of water on the Trail surface.
Urge your congressperson to use the federal stimulus package for biking, walking and transit projects.
Remember: A hand-written or hand-signed letter mailed to your congressperson is the most effective way to reach him or her. Find out who represents you at www.ILGA.gov.
Here is an example letter you can send your congressperson:
Dear [your congressperson],
Money is coming in from the federal stimulus package, and you will be asked to vote on how it is spent. I urge you to demand that biking, walking and transit projects are appropriately funded.
These are projects in Chicagoland that are eligible for stimulus package funding:
Sidewalk and ADA curb ramp improvements (all communities)
Bike boulevards and bike lanes (all communities)
Green and bike-friendly buses (CTA and Pace)
Bus rapid transit (CTA)
Eliminate slow zones (CTA)
Burnham Greenway (South Cook County)
Deerfield Road Bike Path (Lake County)
Safe Routes to School Will-Center Road sidewalk (Monee)
Illinois Prairie Path Bridge over EJ&E Railroad (DuPage County)
Stearns Road Bridge at Fox River (Kane County)
Chicago Avenue streetscape (Evanston)
Let us know who you contact. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for advocating!
With the swearing in of Governor Pat Quinn on Thursday, January 29, 2009, we are hopeful that we are ushering a new era for active transportation in the State of Illinois. Gov. Quinn has long been a supporter of our work, from helping to push the successful Bikes on Metra program to being a champion for Safe Routes to School. He launched Walk Across Illinois, a program that we now manage. He is a walker, a bicyclist and a transit rider. He will forgo private planes to take Amtrak. And he belives in a government that works for the people.
I don't expect miracles, especially given the financial state that our economy is in. What I expect is consistent leadership on the issues that are important to our members. I expect attention being spent to important funding programs such as Transportation Enahncements and Safe Routes to School. He needs support to make this happen. Support from leadership in the General Assembly and support from constituents. We will keep our readers and members aware of opportunities to voice this support.
So good luck Governor Quinn, we look forward to partnering with you and your administration over the next two years.
I rode the Trail from 31st Street to Ardmore at around 10:30 p.m. on Wednesday . There was considerably less salt on the Trail south of Grant Park so there was more spotty snow on the Trail from Grant Park to 31st Street. Still the trail was certainly rideable in that area. There was also some drifting snow from the Museum Campus to the south side of the McCormick Center. Again, rideable but not in the best shape.
Through Grant Park to Ohio Street the Trail was clear with some additional snow on the south side of the bridge over the Chicago River. I took the sidewalk just to the south of LSD at Grand to Ohio Street to Inner Lake Shore Drive (didn't even attempt the Trail between Ohio and Oak Street).
The Oak Street Underpass, while not in great shape was rideable. Conditions were worse on the west side of LSD. Salt had been laid down on the pavement on the east side of LSD. I did not have to dismount in this section.
From Oak Street to Ardmore the Trail was in good shape except, of course, for the section just south of Fullerton but the dirt trail was rideable in that area. There was a little bit of drifting snow near the totem pole but so much that you can not ride in this area.
Today, the House approved the Nadler Amendment to the federal economic stimulus bill on a voice vote. The Amendment restores $1.5 billion for the transit capital formula program and $1.5 billion for New Starts (new transit services).
For more information about the Nadler Amendment, see yesterday's blog posting.
The House also rejected a proposed amendment to strip funding for Amtrak.
These two votes are a big victory for the Chicago area.
The House is expected to approve the full stimulus bill later today.
Congress is voting in the next day on the Nadler Amendment to the federal economic stimulus bill. It would add $3 billion to the transit funding in the bill. In Illinois, these funds would help eliminate all slow zones on the CTA rail lines, and help CTA and Pace purchase new green and bike-friendly buses. Please make a commitment to active transportation and support the Nadler Amendment.
Today, Active Trans sent a Open Letter to the Illinois Congressional Delegation urging support for the Nadler Amendment. A copy of the letter is attached.
Please call your Representatives and urge a vote yes for the Nadler Amendment.
|Open Letter to Congress.pdf||69.57 KB|