Proposed CTA cuts, restructuring draw vocal opponents

September 4, 2012

By Ken Davis

(WBEZ/Ken Davis)
More than 300 people gathered to voice concerns about the CTA's plans to cut or restructure about a dozen bus lines.

More than 300 people crowded into a Chicago Transit Authority hearing room Tuesday night to complain about proposed cuts to bus service.

The Chicago Transit Authority has billed its new plan as a service increase. It wants to put more buses and trains on its most popular lines during rush hours to relieve what President Forrest Claypool calls sardine-can like conditions.

But to fund that change, Claypool proposes eliminating or restructuring about a dozen bus lines he says are under-used or are duplicated by other services.

The people who use them had their say last night, like rider Donald Miller:

"I don’t understand y’all logic," Miller said. "Cutting service to relieve overcrowding. How does that work? Explain that to me."

By far the most vocal contingents spoke on behalf of the Lincoln Avenue #11, and the #145, which runs from the North Side along Lake Shore Drive to Michigan Avenue. Their defenders said these buses are crowded all day long, with the 145 in particular riding at full capacity.

CTA Board President Terry Peterson said the input from this hearing will influence the board’s decision. That meeting is set for Sept. 12.