The first Chicago bike shop commercial I’ve seen


I’ve had work done on my bike The Bike Lane twice. I like this commercial for their fix a flat service. It was uploaded a year ago, but someone in my Google+ feed posted it today. I know at least one other company that fixes flats where you are: one of our sponsors, Pedal To The People. Have you seen any other commercials for Chicagoland bike shops? Continue reading The first Chicago bike shop commercial I’ve seen

Weekend open thread: Speed cameras, yea or nay?

Watch this video of a small experiment conducted by Volkswagen in Sweden where people who sped funded a lottery that those who didn’t speed were automatically entered into.


Watch The Speed Camera Lottery on YouTube.

Will speed cameras successfully reduce speeding and injuries in Chicago? Would you support such a speed camera lottery? Do you ever think the speed camera lottery would “die”, meaning that people would stop speeding and the lottery would no longer have revenue? Continue reading Weekend open thread: Speed cameras, yea or nay?

Weekend open thread: What videos did you watch this week?


NYC Ave. by Shawn Brown

Last weekend’s open thread asked you to post a link to an article you read. This weekend I want you to post a link to a video about some kind of sustainable transportation that you watched. I’ll go first. Here’s a vigorous and dramatic view of New York City streets, traffic, and buildings, from a very low-to-the-ground point of view, shot all from cameras mounted on bicycles. I really like the first minute, where the camera is (in what seems like slow  motion, but isn’t) wrapping around objects and people.

NACTO is for cities, AASHTO is for states: This video is about “Cities for Cycling”


As part of the Cities for Cycling program, bikeway design experts take their show on the road, using the streets of different U.S. cities as their classroom and the new NACTO design book as their guide.

Watch this Streetfilms video featuring CDOT’s Gabe Klein and David Gleason, experts from Portland, Oregon, New York City, and San Francisco, as well as Lee Crandell, campaigns director at Active Transportation Alliance, and Margo O’Hara, a co-leader of the Streets for Cycling Plan’s North Side district. Continue reading NACTO is for cities, AASHTO is for states: This video is about “Cities for Cycling”

Insight into how CTA built Train Tracker by Text


CTA passengers wait for trains in the Loop. Photo by Jim Watkins. 

Last week I excitedly announced the launch of the Chicago Transit Authority’s new system to get predicted arrival times for trains by text messaging (also known as SMS). I thought that the messaging syntax and the station codes were amusing but clever.

I emailed Tony Coppoletta, the CTA’s manager of external electronic communications manager, to ask about how the codes came to be, as well as upcoming Train Tracker features and the capabilities of SMS communications. Coppoletta directs how they reach their customers and partners with information about CTA services through digital means.  Continue reading Insight into how CTA built Train Tracker by Text

Grid Shots: Water taxi edition


A Chicago Water Taxi travels south on the Chicago River from Ping Tom Park in Chinatown, just south of 18th Street, towards downtown. Photo by Eric Pancer. 

Are water taxis part of sustainable transportation?

The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) helped Chicago Water Taxi (Wendella) get a Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality grant to buy a new boat in 2000. It’s easy to understand their efforts to reduce congestion on the road if people who normally drive the route of a water taxi now take the boat. And same for the air quality if the emissions of its engine, measured in person-miles, is better than that of an automobile. But what about its influence on water quality? The Environmental Protection Agency describes all the ways in which boating pollutes water. An article in the Active Transportation Alliance’s Mode Shift newsletter explained water taxi transportation as another local transit option. Continue reading Grid Shots: Water taxi edition