Your article on River Forest’s renewing their red-light camera contract is excellent [River Forest renews contract for red-light cameras, News, July 6]. It points out the money-making aspects of this questionable practice. I have noticed that Harlem Avenue is loaded with these camera “traps,” at least between North Avenue and Cermak Road. I know of at least five people who have been relieved of at least $100 each at Harlem and Cermak. I am one of those people.
A small “No Turn on Red” sign is the only warning on Harlem heading south to Cermak. If safety were the primary reason for these cameras, the signs would be much larger. Certainly the camera companies want people to keep making these turns. After all, they are in this to make money. Regarding North Riverside, River Forest, etc., these suburbs would give away the money for humanitarian causes if safety were their main concern. They are not fooling me at all.
My recommendation, to those who live in this area, is to avoid Harlem Avenue as much as you can. Harlem Avenue is difficult enough without these built-in, money-making schemes. I recommend we spend our money somewhere else, away from these shopping areas on Harlem, until the cameras are removed.
The merchants need to understand that the municipalities involved have made Harlem Avenue a hostile place for drivers. I, for one, intend to spend my money elsewhere, where this form of harassment is not present.