Update on CDOT’s bikeway busyness

Last week Grid told you about some new and refreshed bikeways in Chicago. The Chicago Bicycle Program, part of the Department of Transportation (CDOT), has been more active than the article let on.

CDOT published a custom map on Tuesday and we’ve published a table from CDOT of the locations, distances, and funding sources of these new and refreshed bike lanes.


Photo shows a new marked shared lane on California Avenue from North Avenue to Milwaukee Avenue. 

View the table on Google Fusion Tables where you can easily sort and export the data.

About 12 miles of new bike lanes has been installed in 2011. Funding was provided by Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) grants from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Arterial Resurfacing (AR, a City-administered program that uses funding from the state, ARRA*, and city taxpayers), and, in one instance, a local streetscape project. More new bike lanes and marked shared lanes are scheduled for the 26th, 35th, and 49th Wards, paid for by those respective wards’ Menu funds.

A bike lane has reappeared on Vincennes Avenue, between 70th and 76th Streets. There used to be a bike lane here that was removed by the City or State for Dan Ryan construction-related traffic detours in 2006. The bike lane was never returned.


According to the data, this stretch of Milwaukee Avenue (from Armitage Avenue to California Avenue) will be refreshed. Judging from this photo taken in May 2011, the bike lane striping looks to be in good condition and shouldn’t require replacement.

The table does not include project costs. For bikeways paid for by ward Menu funds, the costs will be listed in the end-of-year expenditure reports on the City’s website (which are difficult to find and are only available as PDF).

*ARRA is the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, or “federal stimulus,” legislation enacted in 2009. Track the money on the Recovery.gov website, or read more about it on Wikipedia. ARRA holds funding for the High-Speed Intercity Passenger Rail program that is funding the track construction in Illinois between Chicago/Joliet and St. Louis.

5 thoughts on “Update on CDOT’s bikeway busyness”

  1. Thank God they’re re-striping that part of Wells. It’s terrible right now – one of the most heavily-used bike corridors in the city and the lanes are basically gone. Gives all the Old Town taxis even more reason to ignore bicyclists.

    Great to see aldermen putting their menu money to good use.

  2. Hi Steven, at a Walk Bike Transit panel discussion held last night at Kozy’s Cyclery on Milwaukee, an audience member referred to a “worldwide shortage” of the thermoplastic tape that is used to mark bike lanes. Apparently this is Ald. Joe Moore’s reason why his ward has been unable to follow through on promised bike lane additions. Randy Neufeld of Walk Bike Transit did not dispute this worldwide shortage mentioend by the audience member.

    Are you aware of a worldwide shortage of the thermoplastic tape used for bike lanes?

    Thanks for all the great info.

    Matt Grosspietsch

    1. This was the excuse CDOT used last year as one reason (or the only reason) why 2010 saw so few miles of new or refreshed bikeways.

      Perhaps the shortage is over. A bunch of miles just went it.

      (When CDOT mentioned this at an MBAC meeting last year, I looked online for news and evidence, and found one supporting article. I asked people I knew in other cities if they had heard something similar, and they weren’t aware of it.)

      P.S. I was at the CCC meeting and discussion last night at Kozy’s, and I left around 8:10 PM.

  3. Hi Guys-
    I was at the panel discussion as well. I liked Randy’s take on Ald. Moore’s work for the bike lanes. He pointed out that as Aldermen begin to help us by planning lanes in their wards we will need to continue our support by creating extra pressure to help get them finished. By calling 311 to report lanes that need to be resurfaced as these calls are documented now. Another task was asking the Alderman themselves who else we can call to help put emphasis on getting projects finished. Applying pressure with the Alderman more than on them.
    I thought the panel was very interesting in that respect.
    The message that came through to me was sort of now that the ball is rolling how do we stay important partners with the leaders we have helped get elected? We need to continue to work with these new leaders for the next few years. Alderman need to feel that these lanes are a success for the ward as a whole as they get developments to walking and biking finished and then to get credit when they are done.

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