Victories on the Ike

Opinion: Columns

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There are four alternative plans from the Illinois Department of Transportation for the eventual rebuilding of the Eisenhower Expressway through Oak Park and the near west suburbs. Each of those plans includes adding a fourth lane in each direction. Each plan calls for containing the expansion of the Ike within the existing ditch in Oak Park. Each plan includes extension of the Blue Line el out to Mannheim Road.

Two of those results — the ditch and the el — represent notable victories for Oak Park's intense efforts to steer this planning process. And the third — the fourth lane — was and should be a foregone conclusion. Oak Park deserves to be satisfied with this result and we need to start working, somewhat skeptically but more collaboratively, with IDOT to bring the exit ramp proposals more under control, to influence the final choices on how the added lane will be used — HOV, toll, and to press hard for notably wider bridges at Austin, Oak Park and Harlem that will accommodate buses, bikes, drop-offs and pedestrians.


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Posted: October 9th, 2013 10:23 AM

While the plan accounts for an expanded Blue Line to La Grange, CTA still has to get the funding for it. They will have their hands full getting funding to fully modernize the existing line from Clinton to Forest Park. In looking at the CTA study documentation, the main focus in on the existing line.

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