Last Night’s Results: People Like to Bike

Last night’s neighborhood assembly brought together 20 neighborhood residents (mostly from Sheridan Park) to brainstorm ideas for the 46th Ward Participatory Budgeting ballot, and boy howdy, were there some consistent themes.

To bottom-line it right away: the #1 vote from both separate brainstorming groups was strangely the same: a traffic-calming project on Leland Avenue from Damen to the lake. Many folks who attended the meeting last night complained about speeding on Leland and wanted to fix it: we’re talking landscaped traffic circles in intersections, curb bump-outs, and traffic humps.

The top 4 items from my group’s brainstorm were:

  1. A traffic-calming project on Leland
  2. Pedestrian-scale street lighting on residential streets
  3. A branded archway or bricked intersection at Montrose/Broadway/Sheridan to indicate the Gateway to Uptown
  4. A separated bike lane on Broadway and Montrose


There were some well-informed people in my group who knew of specific infrastructure treatments they’d like to see. I hope that they- and some of  our blog readers, stay involved in the process by becoming “community representatives.” More on that below.

Some quick facts about participatory budgeting:

  • 4 Chicago Aldermen are doing participatory budgeting this year: Moore, Arena, Hairston, and Cappleman.
  • Of the $1.3 million in each ward’s menu funds, participatory budgeting will allocate $1 million.

And finally: the timeline for this year’s budgeting process is:

  • October: Neighborhood assemblies (the last one is Tuesday October 30, 7-9pm, at People’s Church at 941 W Lawrence: be there.)
  • Nov-Apr: Meetings of Community Representatives to decide what goes on the ballot
  • Mar-Apr: Project Expos
  • May: Vote

The best way to get involved at this point is to attend the last neighborhood assembly on Tuesday October 30 and/or  volunteer to be a community representative by emailing Dana Fritz at Alderman Cappleman’s office: dana [at] james46 [dot] org.

posted by Arline Welty

About bikeuptown46

I am currently the Communications Director for the Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters which represents 33,000 union men and women in three states who swing a hammer for a living. I publsih a magazine, a couple of email newsletters and two websites. I also do videos, webinars, advertisng and public relations. As an avid cyclist I ride a three-wheeled trike 5 to 6 days per week 52 weeks per year which adds up to between 5,000 and 6,000 miles year-round, including daily commutes along Chicago's lakefront ... polar vortexes included. I have never missed a day of work because of Chicago's weather. I am an activist who serves humanitarian and political causes: To advocate for the Sudanese in Illinois who have fled Southern Sudan and Darfur is one of my most rewarding experiences. I work with my son Sean on Sudan presentations at churches and community groups with my Sudanese friends on the problems facing them in Darfur, South Sudan and the United States. My son Sean and I work together on the Abolition Institute which seeks to end slavery in the west African nation of Mauritania. My photography chronicles Chicago's lakefront through my daily rides. My photo website is I just self-published my first photo-book on the history of my Chicago neighborhood: Sweet Home Buena Park. I live about one-half mile north of Wrigley Field in the Buena Park neighborhood.


  1. Marcus Twain

    Montrose is not nearly wide enough for a protected bike lane.

  2. Will Bike Uptown also come to the meeting at People’s Church next Tuesday, Oct. 30? There might be some ideas from residents near this side of Leland that would work well with the Leland greenway idea from Sheridan Park residents.

    One thing for sure is that the new Broadway Bridge created in conjunction with the new CTA Wilson Avenue Station is a space that needs to be ‘activated’ and would work great with a Leland greenway, which would dovetail menu & transit funding and even give an iconic function to the preserved façade of the H.W. Rubloff/Majestic Menswear building (part of the CTA project) at the northeast corner of Leland. It’s hard to envision it now, but the bridge is a community meetup waiting to happen. It could also help bring those who come for the entertainment district into the community on foot, bike, & transit, and with solar-powered wifi it could even unite our online & offline lives.

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