IDOT is seeking public comment on the Illinois Bike Transportation Plan this Thursday, Oct. 10, 2013, from 2–6:30 PM, at James R. Thompson Center, 100 W. Randolph Chicago. If you can’t make it tomorrow, be sure to contribute via the Webinars or online commenting option for IDOT’s Multi-Modal Transportation Improvement Program.
Talk to the (I)DOT
Why is this opportunity so important to Uptown? Roads under IDOT jurisdiction (shown in red on the snapshot from IDOT’s Getting Around Illinois map below) cross through Uptown at points heavily used by its most vulnerable residents and visitors: those coming and going to our schools, parks, senior housing, and hospitals, often on foot, bus, or bicycle. And IDOT roads with the most traffic enter and exit from Lake Shore Drive into Uptown’s most dense residential areas. No whether you’re a driver, transit rider, pedestrian, or cyclist, IDOT really needs your perspective on how things look on the ground.
Especially important for drivers and cyclists is that IDOT doesn’t permit protected bike lanes on roads under its jurisdiction. As shown in the People on the Trail report released in May 2013 through the joint effort of Chicago Area Runners Association, Friends of the Park, and Active Transportation Alliance, Uptown is home to the most satisfying parts of the Lakefront Trail north of Roosevelt Road, including the single longest “Good” stretch of the whole lakefront! But the report also showed that the Uptown also hosts 4 of the 5 access points in the entire trail north and south where respondents perceived the most vehicle conflict. In other words, it’s dicey getting on and off the lakefront in Uptown.
These commenting opportunities are a great way to tell IDOT why protected bike lanes are a critical option to have on the table in working up our state mulitmodal menu!