There’s some restlessness, but overall, Chicago-area mass transit users remain satisfied with service overall, despite delays, breakdowns, crowding and fare hikes, reports WBBM’s Bob Roberts.
The region’s top transit official warned Thursday that CTA, Metra, and Pace fare hikes and service cuts would be “difficult to avoid” if the legislature enacts budget cuts proposed in Gov. Bruce Rauner’s budget.
A Regional Transportation Authority analysis released Thursday has determined that the CTA, Metra and Pace face $36.4 billion in capital needs over the next 10 years.
The Pace suburban bus system is dreaming big – $2.3 billion big – trying to get in on potential federal funding down the line for some of the system’s long-term projects.
CTA bus ridership is down and the transit agency is offering a lot of reasons why.
Metra riders are used to carrying a ticket and tucking that paper under the metal tab in front of you. But CBS 2’s Ed Curran says a new app will soon let you buy a ticket for Metra on your phone and keep it there.
Pace is the first Chicago-area transit agency to unveil its 2015 budget — and it’s good news for riders.
Heavy rains have caused major flooding across much of the Chicago area overnight, especially in the southwest suburbs, where at least two school districts were forced to cancel classes at all its schools.
Pace has decided to “go slow” with plans to increase the number of buses riding the shoulder on I-55.
More buses could be riding the shoulders of I-55 next month.
The CTA and Pace say they’re not aware of any problems with the final changeover to Ventra cards. WBBM’s Bob Roberts spoke with both agencies.
The Regional Transportation Authority may not even be around in a few months, yet it has just signed a 38-month, $5 million advertising contract targeting markets that have eluded the area’s transit agencies.
Pace wants to make it easier this summer for CTA riders to get to the Brookfield Zoo.
More than 200 people lined up at the Jefferson Park branch library to make the switch Thursday. A few elderly customers said they merely waited until CTA came to them, because the trip to CTA headquarters in the West Loop was too much.
CTA officials said 86 percent of its fares are now paid with a Ventra card, and the agency is pushing the last of its riders to make the switch to Ventra. Pace riders have been slower to make the change, with about 60 percent of the suburban bus agency’s fares paid with Ventra cards.
RTA Chairman John Gates said he wants the agency to concentrate on what he considers doable — and said his priority remains finding new money for capital repairs and rehabilitation.
The polar vortex has blown a hole in the CTA and Pace budgets, but neither agency is pushing the panic button yet.
When Ventra was first unveiled in September, there were massive teething problems.
CTA is a lot happier now with the Ventra farecard than it was even a month ago. But CTA President Forrest Claypool said Wednesday that the final phase-out of old fare cards is at least two months off.
Amalgamated Transit Union Division 308 President Robert Kelly said the employees he represents are getting verbal abuse daily.