Chicago’s Lakefront Trail Construction To Be Completed By End Of Year

The Chicago Sun Times reported last week about the construction developments for the lakefront trail. According to the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT), all efforts to revamp the trail will be completed by the end of 2018.

The purpose for all of the construction that has taken place the last several years has been to create separate lanes for cyclists and runners/walkers. Their goal is to make a safer path, which would reduce the number of collisions between bikers and runners.

The remaining construction includes the Navy Pier flyover, which included a ramp that will carry users over two busy intersections and connect to the Lake Shore Drive underpass. Currently, pedestrians and cyclists have to use the sidewalk underneath Lakeshore Drive, which is often congested and dangerous.

Much of the construction is complete, which covers an eighteen (18) mile stretch from Ardmore on the North side to 71st street on the South side. There are pockets where construction is set to start in August, but is said to be complete by the end of the year.

I have praised this construction project since it was announced over a year ago. Separate lanes for cyclists and runners was a bold project, but it seems to be working. The areas where the construction is complete has made the lakefront much less congested, which will hopefully  lead to less accidents.

Should you or a loved one be injured in a Chicago bicycle accident, or Chicago car accident, please call Chicago personal injury attorney, Aaron J. Bryant, for a free legal consultation at 312-614-1076.

City of Chicago To Use Data And Analytics To Reduce Car Crashes

The City of Chicago Department of Transportation (“CDOT”) issued a press release this week regarding their “Vision Zero” plan, which is an effort to eliminate all pedestrian traffic deaths in the city by the year 2026. The plan was introduced one year ago.

As part of their  release, CDOT announced it has entered a data partnership with Arity, a subsidiary of The Allstate Insurance. Arity is a connected car technology company that collects nearly one billion miles of driving and connected car data per month from more than one million mobile phone and in-car devices. Arity has a unique, user centric view of a city’s mobility patterns and ability to identify driving behaviors that carry the most risk and cause severe traffic accidents.  CDOT stated that it will be using the data and predictive analytics to better understand the risk factors of specific segments of roadways and intersections throughout Chicago.

From the release: “partnership will be used help the City identify the risk factors on specific roadways and help determine where to best prioritize and focus investments in infrastructure and traffic safety resources, as well as how to tailor interventions to improve road safety in Chicago.”

I think this is an incredibly important investment by the city.  I imagine that the use of this advanced data will  city will be able to determine where to put additional cross-walk and pedestrian signs, where to add four-way stops, where widen roads and I’m sure other safety measures.

It’s interesting that this was just announced. As I wrote within the last few weeks, pedestrian deaths in Chicago are outpacing the number of fatalities over the last several years. “Vision Zero” is off to a slow start, but hopefully this partnership with Arity will help curb that trend.

If you or a loved on has been seriously injured in a Chicago pedestrian accident or Chicago traffic accident, then call Chicago personal injury attorney, Aaron J. Bryant, for a free legal consultation at 312-614-1076.

New Bicycle Lanes Are Under Construction On Chicago’s Clybourn Ave

 

Multiple news outlets, including the Chicago Tribune, reported last month that the city began construction on a new stretch of dedicated bicycle lanes along Clybourn Avenue. The lanes will stretch from North Avenue to Division Street and from Division to Orleans. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) hopes the project will be completed by early August.

This is a welcome addition to Chicago bicycle enthusiasts as the number of bike commuters continues to grow. The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) estimated recently that 38% of all morning commuters are bicyclists.

I think a tip of the hat needs to go to Mayor Emanuel and his staff as they continue to expand and promote bicycling in Chicago. The mayor vowed when he took office that Chicago would continue to grow and become one of the most bicycle friendly cities in the world. Part of this vow has been his commitment to safety. By adding these dedicated bicycle lanes allows a separate and (hopefully) safe space for bicyclists. Drivers must honor that space and stay in their own lane. Although I haven’t seen any statistics on bicycle accidents recently, I believe the city is safer and healthier with all of these new bike lanes. There are now fewer vehicles on the road during rush hour commutes (which is good for everyone) and bicyclists can safely commute to their jobs knowing they have their own dedicated lane. I look forward to see where the mayor continues to expand these lanes.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a Chicago bike accident or Chicago traffic accident, then call Chicago personal injury lawyer, Aaron Bryant, for a free legal consultation.

Chicago Launches First Pedestrian Safety Plan

Per the Chicago
Tribune
, the city will be launching its first city-wide pedestrian safety
plan. I have written about this subject numerous times on this site, and about
the effort Rahm Emanuel has taken to make the streets safer for pedestrians.
Earlier the city implemented the controversial speeding cameras located in
school zones. The city also recently installed stop signs at many pedestrian
crossings on busy streets. Last year the city enacted stiffer penalties for
drivers who ignore pedestrian cameras. 

According to the Chicago
Department of Transportation (CDOT), the goal of this initiative is to improve safety for children and seniors
around schools and parks, improving access to transit, safer
crossings at intersections and increasing space for pedestrians.

The hundreds of
recommendations include better-marked crosswalks, the establishment of
pedestrian islands in the middle of multilane streets, better signals and beacons,
and pedestrian countdown timers at crossings. Other long-term improvements
discussed in the plan include staggered midblock bump-outs on residential
streets to slow traffic.

Continental-style
crosswalks were among the first changes, CDOT Commissioner Gabe Klein said,
largely because the department began to weave in the new pedestrian plan in time for
already-scheduled construction projects.

The crosswalks have big
rungs across the walkway for higher visibility and are made of a reflective
material, Klein said. More than 100 such crosswalks were installed in 2012,
Klein said.

Pavement markings — on
crosswalks and stop lines for vehicles — are faded across Chicago,
and Klein said millions would be spent this year repainting such markings so
they are visible to drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists.

The overall goal by the
city is to decrease the number of pedestrian deaths to zero within ten years.
This is a lofty goal, but I take my hat off to Mayor Emanuel and to the city
for taking these initial steps to make our streets safer for pedestrians. 

If you or someone you
love has been injured in a Chicago car accident or Chicago pedestrian accident,
then call Chicago personal injury attorney, Aaron Bryant, for a free consultation at 312-588-3384 or go to the firm website at www.blgchicago.com. 

CDOT Teams With CPD To Make Crosswalks Safer

This summer The Chicago Department of Transportation teamed  up with the Chicago Police Department on an undercover sting operation to protect pedestrians at crosswalks. Off-duty police officers are going undercover at busy intersections around the city of Chicago and are stopping drivers who do not stop for pedestrians and crosswalks. The fines for failure to yield run anywhere from $50 up to $500.  The effort is to help prevent auto and pedestrian accidents

“Providing a safe pedestrian environment is our No. 1 goal,” said CDOT Acting Commissioner Thomas Powers. “This initiative is designed to increase awareness among motorists about the importance of stopping for pedestrians. People should be able to safely cross the street in their neighborhoods.”

Remember to always be aware of pedestrians, especially at night, at the different busy crosswalks around the city. Not only is it safe practice, but you could avoid a hefty fine. To read the complete story from the CDOT website, clike here.

If you, or someone you know has been involved in an auto or trucking accident, then call attorney Aaron Bryant for a free consultation at 312-588-3384.