A dozen CTA bus routes get the ax today

CTA makes changes to over 50 bus and train routes as part of “crowd reduction plan”

December 16, 2012

Judith Ruiz-Branch

WBEZ
CTA adding service to No.66 Chicago bus along with 48 other routes as part of the "crowd reduction" program

Today is the end of the road for twelve bus routes throughout the city.

The Chicago Transit Authority is cutting these routes to add service to more congested ones as part of their crowd-reduction program.

Included in the cuts is the No. 11 Lincoln/Sedgewick bus line that would affect the area between Fullerton and Western and the route through Lincoln Park, Roscoe Village, North Center and Lincoln Square.

The single bus line has drawn passionate supporters ranging from small business owners and senior citizens to 47th ward alderman Ameya Pawar, who called the route a “lifeline” to his ward. 

“Seniors, and many other vulnerable population ride this bus to get to and from stores and access critical services in my neighborhood,” Pawar said. “This is at the top of a one size fits all plan that was made in a vacuum.”

The CTA said some of the routes, like the No.11 bus, are being cut because there are a number of other convenient options for commuters nearby.

“We created a map of the senior centers and senior apartment buildings in the area of the No. 11,” said Brian Steele, a spokesperson for the CTA. “In every single case, the senior center is within a block or two of a bus route.”

Steele said other buses included in the ax only serve about 2 percent of CTA commuters.

The No.11 bus serves on average about 5,500 commuters a day compared to the No. 12 Roosevelt bus which serves on average over 15,000 commuters a day, according to 2011 data from the CTA.

The No. 12 is getting added service as part of the crowd reduction plan, along with 47 other bus routes.

Steele said the purpose of the crowd reduction program is to provide more buses and trains to routes that receive the highest amount of ridership and serve about 76 percent of commuters.

The CTA said it is also adding service to 6 of the 8 train lines that serve the area.