West Suburbs

New Pace Bus budget includes $7.6 million in new service

While financial constraints have left local government agencies struggling to fund public transit in recent years, at least one agency is planning to expand service in 2016.

Pace, the suburban bus provider in the Chicago region, released its proposed 2016 budget last week, and it includes nearly $8 million in new service.

Greenline Wheels management shifts to Active Trans

In an effort to increase bike education, encouragement and safety programming in the near west region of Chicagoland, Active Trans recently assumed day-to-day management of Greenline Wheels. 

Greenline Wheels, founded in 2010 by a local family seeking to elevate the bike friendliness of the Oak Park/River Forest community, will remain at 105 South Marion Street in Oak Park. 

Extend Blue Line at both ends to connect job centers

The most opportunities to increase the number of people who ride transit to work in Cook County lies in the outer ring suburbs, where interchanges and disconnected towns leave residents with no choice but to spend hours each day stuck in traffic on the way to and from work.

Extending the Blue Line northwest through the I-90 Corridor to Schaumburg and west along I-88 to Oak Brook would go a long way toward solving that problem.

Airport Connector would benefit more than just air travelers

Imagine if you could get from Midway to O’Hare in less than 40 minutes on public transit.

Currently, that trip takes well over an hour and involves transferring from the Orange to the Blue Line in the Loop before coming all the way back west towards O’Hare. Building the Airport Connector Express, one of 10 expansion projects in our Transit Future vision, could cut the travel time between Chicago’s two airports in half.

Oak Park to get Divvy and Neighborhood Greenways

As a 20-year resident of Oak Park, I’m excited to share a number of changes coming to Oak Park that will improve conditions for biking and walking.

Last week, the village board approved the Oak Park Neighborhood Greenways system as an addendum to its 2008 bike plan. Elements of the 2008 bike plan have already been adopted, such as significantly more and better bike parking near transit stations, bike lanes, wayfinding signs and creating a village government bike fleet. 

Batavia’s shared street now a treasured community space

If you’ve never seen or heard of a woonerf, the city of Batavia in the western suburbs has built a great example of one. It’s a European-style "shared street" that looks like a brick plaza that cars are allowed to drive on. It has no curbs, no sidewalks and is designed for people driving, people biking (the Fox River Trail that runs right through it), and people walking — all accommodated by designs that effectively slow cars down. 

Celebrating Bike to Work Week in the suburbs

The city of Chicago promotes bike culture through a celebratory week of biking once a year, but did you know various suburbs also celebrate Bike to Work Week, as well? 

Here are just a few of the efforts to encourage more biking in suburban communities during Bike to Work Week. 

 

LOMBARD

The Village of Lombard, which has participated in Bike to Work Week since 2005, uses a unique approach to get more of the village employees to ride their bikes or walk to work during the week. 

Kids on Wheels rolls through second year

Thanks to Active Trans' Kids on Wheels program, more kids in the region are learning to ride bikes safely and more schools are offering bike education. 

Kids on Wheels provides a “starter fleet” consisting of a fully enclosed mobile trailer containing 28 bikes, helmets, and all the needed accessories and training for a school district to provide a comprehensive bike education program. 

More Complete Streets coming to suburban Cook County

Leading health experts agree that there is a direct connection between our neighborhoods and our health. The ZIP codes in which we live can be as much of a predictor of a person's health and well-being as his or her DNA or individual behaviors. 

So how do we ensure that communities are healthy places for people to live?

Know of a dangerous crossing near a school?

We’ve recently had some parents and school officials share with us stories about unsafe streets near schools.

Unfortunately, the dangerous conditions they describe are all too common.  

No sidewalks. Fast moving traffic. Dangerous crossings. Sound familiar? 

For too many Illinois children, these are the unacceptable conditions they encounter every day while walking or biking to school.

Unsafe streets put our kids at risk of not only traumatic injuries, but a lack of physical activity and the associated dangers, such as obesity and chronic disease.