Bicycle Film Festival starts off with a bang on Friday with free viewing


Watch the video interview on Vimeo, it’s 2 minutes long. 

We interviewed Terry Bloom the other day at his gym about the Bicycle Film Festival that starts tomorrow, a locally-produced event with international cachet that celebrates films about bikes but also the bicycles and the people who ride them. We wanted to know what will be different in 2012’s festival over 2011′.

First off, there are three new and different venues, starting with a free showing at the Claudia Cassidy Theater in the Chicago Cultural Center downtown. Donations will be accepted and seats are first come, first served, but if you join one of the three rides departing at 17:30h, “you will get a seat”, Terry guaranteed. Saturday’s screenings move to the Viaduct Theater, at the Belmont and Western Avenue viaduct in Roscoe Village, while Sunday’s films will be projected at the renovated Logan Theater in Logan Square.

See the full screening schedule, venue details, and ticket information (event page on Facebook). All other events are free. Continue reading Bicycle Film Festival starts off with a bang on Friday with free viewing

Chicago bike sharing suggestion map is now live, public meetings coming soon


The Chicago Department of Transportation has made public its bike sharing station suggestion map, where you can click on a location on the map to say “this is a good place for a bike sharing station”, up-vote others’ suggestions, and see the most popular suggested locations.

Go suggest a good location now.

As of this writing, there are 116 locations suggested (and 123 additional votes for those locations), many (or most) of which were made during testing periods. Additionally, the map doesn’t show the ~150 locations that Bicycle Program Coordinator Ben Gomberg said at the September Mayor’s Bicycle Advisory Council meeting were already selected (the majority of which he said were at train stations). I expect there will be 1,000 suggestions within two weeks, so get crackin’.

There are five meetings on three days coming up later this month (you can see them in our calendar).

At the meetings in late October and early November, representatives from CDOT and Alta, the bicycle provider and operator, will discuss the new program and answer questions. Attendees can suggest locations to install bike stations in the proposed service area.

Monday, October 29
11:30h – 13h
Chicago Architecture Foundation
224 S Michigan Avenue

15 – 17h
Pop‐up meeting at Union Station

18:30 – 20h
Chicago Architecture Foundation
224 S Michigan Avenue

Tuesday, October 30
18:30 – 20h
Lincoln Belmont Public Library
1659 W Melrose Street

Tuesday, November 7
18:30 – 20h
Charles Hayes Center
4859 S Wabash Avenue

Tracking the rate of submissions

24 hours and 22 minutes later, on 10-17-12 at 20:50, there are now over four times as many station suggestion locations (477) and 1,963 additional votes for those locations. The most popular location is somewhere around the Polish Triangle, at Milwaukee/Ashland/Division, with 33 votes. The second most popular locations is the Logan Square CTA Blue Line station, with 28 votes (I submitted this one).

49 hours and 20 minutes after we first collected the suggestions, on 10-18-12 at 21:48, there are 578 suggested locations (an increase of only 21%) with 3,076 votes for those locations (only 5 locations lack non-submitter support, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). First place remains the same, while the Western CTA Brown Line station is tied with the Logan Square CTA Blue Line station.

On 10-22-12 at 12:14, there are 826 suggestions and 5,759 votes for those locations (only 2 locations lack non-submitter support, 1, 2). The Polish Triangle location keeps its first place crown, now with 85 votes. Logan Square Blue and Western Brown CTA stations are no longer tied: Logan Square is 1 vote ahead!

Take action: Residents in 4 wards have opportunity to directly influence expenditure of $4 million on infrastructure


The walls of the Mess Hall community center in Rogers Park are covered in project proposals, in 2010. Photo by Samuel Barnett. See more photos from Barnett.

Major updates, 11:17 AM

We received an email Participatory Budgeting Chicago manager Thea Crum, at the University of Illinois at Chicago’s (UIC) Great Cities Institute, that four alderman will be conducting participatory budgeting in their wards, committing $4 million in discretionary spending (which is short of the $5.2 million in menu funds they have available).

The four alderman are:

  • Leslie Hairston, 5th
  • John Arena, 45th
  • James Cappleman, 46th (see details below)
  • Joe Moore, 49th

Continue reading Take action: Residents in 4 wards have opportunity to directly influence expenditure of $4 million on infrastructure

Metra seeks public input to develop first strategic plan in decades


A Rock Island Metra train heading towards Blue Island across 95th Street in Chicago. Photo by Jeff Zoline. 

From a Metra news release:

Furthering its goal of soliciting input and engaging in dialogue with its major stakeholders, Metra is asking its riders, the public, elected officials and others for their help as it begins to craft its first strategic plan in several decades. You can offer input by coming out to one of our public open house forums [calendar below] throughout the region. You can also provide input by completing a short survey actively available here from 7/2/12 until 8/10/12.

All meeting materials are on the Strategic Plan webpage.

Tuesday, July 10, 4 PM – 7 PM
Board Room, 13th Floor
547 W. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60661 Continue reading Metra seeks public input to develop first strategic plan in decades

See what bikes can do at the Cargo Bike Roll Call on Saturday at West Town Bikes


Once again Grid Chicago will be producing the Cargo Bike Roll Call, a social event about what’s possible with bicycling, and how people in Chicago use their bicycles to carry children, dirt for community gardens, or deliver goods.

Saturday, June 9, 2012, from 6 PM to 10 PM
West Town Bikes
2459 W Division Street (same as 1147 N Campbell)

By doing this in June we’ll have more hours of daylight than we did last September!

[flickr]photo:6187991714[/flickr] Continue reading See what bikes can do at the Cargo Bike Roll Call on Saturday at West Town Bikes

Upcoming events for May and June


Photo of Chicagoan bicycling across the Kinzie Street bridge by John Iwanski. 

This is your sustainable transportation upcoming events calendar, with 20 events. You can subscribe to our events calendar via Google Calendar.


Monday, May 28 is the extended deadline for the Bike Video PSA. The competition, sponsored by Goose Island, Bike Chicago (Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events), Bicycle Film Festival, and The Chainlink, began in early May. Read our earlier post.

Tuesday, May 29 is the Wolf Point skyscraper development meeting, a project that intends to bring over 1,000 car parking spaces to an already congested area. The meeting, while not required by any law or policy, is being called by 42nd Ward Alderman Reilly. “The Hines Development Team will present their proposed plan for the site; discuss their Traffic Study (commissioned at my request); and answer your questions about the Proposal.”

Holiday Inn, Wolf Point Ballroom
350 West Mart Center Drive
Chicago, IL Continue reading Upcoming events for May and June