The CTA has moved ahead with its "de-crowding" plan, which will add 48 bus routes, but eliminate 12 of them. The agency says the latter are duplicative or have few riders.
On Wednesday, the Chicago Transit Board approved the plan that was introduced last month to address rider concerns of overcrowding on buses and trains.
"Beginning in mid-December 2012, the Crowding Reduction Plan will add service to 48 bus routes, including the busiest and most crowded bus routes in the city, during peak times," the CTA announced in a statement.
CTA also said it will add 17 rail trips to the Red, Blue, Brown, Purple, Orange and Green lines during weekday rush periods to ease crowding on trains.
The Red, Brown and Blue Lines will also see significant increases in weekend service, the transit agency said.
The Board approved the plan following a public hearing on Sept. 4, 2012.
WBEZ's Curious City is investigating what factors determine how bus routes get added or removed.
“At a time when CTA ridership is growing and trains and buses are increasingly packed during rush hour periods, we’re pleased that the Board approved more service for the most customers," CTA President Forrest Claypool announced in a statement.
"It will provide our customers with a faster and more comfortable transit experience,” he said.
Bus service restructuring, excerpted from the CTA Crowding Reduction Plan:
Routes proposed for discontinuation
#X28 Stony Island Express (send #28 downtown during peak instead)
#64 Foster-Canfield (Alternative #90 and Pace #209)
#69 Cumberland/East River (reroute #81W)
#122 Ill. Center/Ogilvie Express (extend #120 into Streeterville)
#123 Ill. Center/Union Express (extend #121 into Streeterville)
#129 West Loop/South Loop (Alternative #1, #29 and Green Line)
#144 Marine/Michigan Express (Add service to #148)
#145 Wilson/Michigan Express (Add service to #146)
Total = 8
Routes proposed for discontinuation that are served by Pace
#17 Westchester (Alternative Pace #317)
#49A South Western (Alternative Pace #349)
#56A North Milwaukee (Alternative Pace #270)
#90N North Harlem (Alternative Pace #423)
Total = 4
Route segment eliminations
#1 Indiana/Hyde Park (Discontinue south of 35th )
#11 Lincoln/Sedgwick (eliminate service between Western & Fullerton and rename segments #11 Lincoln and #37 Sedgwick)
Total = 2
#111 Pullman/111th /115th – split into two new routes: #111 111th /King Drive and #115 Pullman/115th
Privately contracted routes – Renegotiate subsidy or eliminate route
#10 Museum of Science & Industry
#33 Mag Mile Express
#X98 Avon Express
#132 Goose Island Express
#169 69th -UPS Express
#170 U of C/Midway
#171 U of C/Hyde Park
#172 U of C/Kenwood
#192 U of C/Hospital Express
Total = 9
#N201 Central/Sherman – Owl service (1:00 a.m. to 5:15 a.m.)
Schedule Integration with Pace
#95W West 95 th (coordinate with Pace #381)
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