At the June 13, 2012, Mayor’s Bicycle Advisory Council meeting, we asked Mike Amsden if the Wells Street “enhanced” marked shared lane would be accompanied with signs that say “bikes may use full lane”. He said “no”.
Things changed, as photo contributor Adam Herstein noticed this morning. He says this sign is posted at each intersection (from Wacker Drive to Van Buren Street, we presume, which is the length of the “enhanced” marked shared lane).
A larger version of this sign exists, but the unique situation of the ‘L’ track colums might prevent objects from exceeding the column width, unless they were higher up to avoid being smashed by trucks.
Can you find anything “bad” or “could use improvement” about the design of this intersection between Ogden Avenue and an on-ramp to northbound Kennedy Expressway? There are clues in Notes below.
Two weeks ago, a commenter asked about the LED signs on Illinois highways. This article from the Chicago Tribune tells what they’re showing:
When travel times and Amber alerts aren’t being shown on electronic message boards, a running tally of traffic deaths in Illinois is often displayed along highways across the state to remind motorists about the consequences of dangerous driving.
What are the other factors at play in this increase? Does dangerous design have a role? Or economic factors?
On Saturday, August 11, I went with a friend on the CTA Blue Line to Forest Park with our bikes; we got on the Illinois Prairie Path just a few hundred feet away from the train terminal, inside a cemetery. The bike ride was a reminder to me of the persistent road and trail design inconsistencies, within cities, within states, and across the country. I went on a road trip to Richmond, Virginia, during which I drove on the highways and local roads of 5 states. It seemed to me that the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD), a federal document that every road, path, and bike lane builder in the country must follow (or obtain exemptions from), was lost or deleted. Continue reading Illinois traffic fatalities are up this year: What to do about it?
A “City Information Sign” shows CTA lines and a map of a large area around Michigan Avenue and the Chicago River. Photo by Michelle Stenzel.
Wayfinding is a set of devices that we use to orient ourselves in the current space and to build a journey, no matter how short (downstairs to upstairs) or long (kayaking from San Francisco to Tokyo because of a suggestion made by Google Maps). Two weeks ago Anne Alt wrote about how the quality of wayfinding at the LaSalle Street Metra Station is a weak aspect of the station’s design. This is a collection of wayfinding photos from the Grid Chicago group on Flickr. Continue reading Grid Shots: Wayfinding
A new intermodal link at Congress Parkway and Financial Place, leading passengers up to Metra platforms, as viewed from the northwest.
If there were a contest for “best hidden train station in the Loop,” the dubious winner would be Metra’s LaSalle Street station. Have you ever tried and failed to find this station, or had to give extremely detailed directions to help someone else find it? If your answer is “yes,” you’ve got lots of company.
So why is it such a mystery?
Much of the signage directing “potential” passengers is small, placed in mid-block locations far out of visual range from adjacent intersections, and doesn’t follow the design standards of Metra signs. The station itself is tucked and hidden behind the Chicago Board Options Exchange; the platforms are also above ground with a single point of entry. This aerial view gives you a point of reference. Continue reading How LaSalle Street Metra station maintains hard-to-find reputation
The Chicago Lakefront Trail at Lawrence Avenue showing possibly conflicting intersection signage. Photo by Robert Powers.
[This piece originally ran in Time Out Chicago. Photos by Hui Hwa Nam.]
Q: What’s up with those signs in Uptown where streets cross the Lakefront Trail? Are drivers supposed to stop for bicyclists or are bicyclists supposed to yield to drivers?
A: This unusual signage is at Montrose, Lawrence and Foster Avenues, where the path not only intersects these east-west streets but also meets on- and off-ramps from Lake Shore Drive (LSD). Street traffic gets stop signs while cyclists and skaters on the trail get yield signs. Continue reading Strange signage on the Lakefront Trail