WBEZ | Lake Shore Drive http://www.wbez.org/tags/lake-shore-drive Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Morning Shift: Fear, excitement and uncertainty face the college bound http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-08-09/morning-shift-fear-excitement-and-uncertainty-face <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Dorm-Flickr- Robert Boscacci.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Are you or one of your kids heading off to college? We discuss some of the trepidation both students and parents face as they make the jump to college co-ed.</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-40.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-40" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Fear, excitement and uncertainty face the college bound" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Fri, 09 Aug 2013 08:13:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-08-09/morning-shift-fear-excitement-and-uncertainty-face Morning Shift: Revamping Lake Shore Drive http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-07-30/morning-shift-revamping-lake-shore-drive-108220 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/LSD-Flickr- guanacux.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The city is planning to revamp Lake Shore Drive to make it more accommodating to motorists, cyclists and pedestrians. What will this mean for your commute? How would you change Lake Shore Drive?</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-31.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-31" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Revamping Lake Shore Drive" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Tue, 30 Jul 2013 08:32:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-07-30/morning-shift-revamping-lake-shore-drive-108220 Question answered: Why ban pickups from Lake Shore Drive? Where can they park? http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/question-answered-why-ban-pickups-lake-shore-drive-where-can-they-park-104631 <p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="http://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F73992858&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=false&amp;color=0094ff" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>Yours truly drives a teeny, tiny 1999 Toyota Corolla. It may not be the most stylish vehicle, but on the plus side it doesn&rsquo;t attract much attention from cops or my Chicago neighbors. That&rsquo;s more than can be said for some of my fellow Chicagoans&rsquo; vehicles, apparently. Take this question from from Bronzeville resident Jef Johnson:</p><p><em>I keep hearing that pickup trucks are not allowed on Lake Shore Drive, though I do see a number of them daily, and that there are parts of the city where pickups are not allowed to park. Is all that true and if so, why?</em></p><p>Intriguing, no? And it&#39;s especially so when you consider that industry sales data show the Ford F-Series pickup trucks topped automotive best-sellers lists for more than two decades. The answer means a lot to Jef, who says he&rsquo;s been driving one type of truck or another since 1987. Being able to throw stuff in the back, he says, made trucks handy for his camping and other outdoorsy activities. And, he hasn&rsquo;t let up; his most recent purchase &mdash; finalized just this October &mdash; was a Dodge RAM.</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m also a wedding officiant,&rdquo; Jef tells me, &ldquo;so I&rsquo;m often meeting brides in the evenings and weekends and, since I go visit them, I end up parking in all parts of the city.&rdquo;</p><p>That got him wondering and worrying: Was he going to walk out of a bride&rsquo;s home one of these days to a bright orange ticket on his car?</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m always half expecting to get pulled over on LSD,&rdquo; he says.</p><p>So where, exactly, can Jef and his new Dodge go, and where might they run into trouble?</p><p><strong>Should Jef get the jitters while on the Drive?</strong></p><p>I put Jef&rsquo;s first question &mdash; the one about Lake Shore Drive &mdash; to the city&rsquo;s law department, and the spokesman there sent back an email, replete with relevant portions of the Chicago municipal code. The gist of the <a href="#Ordinance1">largest chunk</a> gets to the idea that commercial activity doesn&rsquo;t belong on city boulevards, and the assumption is that pickup trucks are commercial vehicles.</p><p>Translation: No, pickup trucks can not drive on Lake Shore Drive. It&rsquo;s considered a boulevard, so vehicles with truck license plates designed to &ldquo;carry freight or commercial goods&rdquo; are supposed to stay off. That&rsquo;s the case even when the vehicle&rsquo;s not actually used for such purposes.</p><p>There are notable exceptions, however. If, for example, you drive a Ford F-150 to a Bears game, and you take I-55 to the Soldier Field parking lot, you should be okay. Another exception: If you&rsquo;re a construction worker and you bring lumber to McCormick Place for a convention.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/RS6880_115959901_aee9e318be_o.jpg" style="float: right; height: 197px; width: 300px; margin: 5px;" title="Under most circumstances, pickup trucks are prohibited from being on Chicago's Lake Shore Drive. (Flickr/Flipped Out)" /><strong>But why?</strong></p><p>The rationale behind the rules took some digging and, frankly, is a bit elusive. My City Hall sources had a tough time accounting for how this all came to be and, it seems, they don&rsquo;t get this question very often. One person even called my request &ldquo;WBEZ&rsquo;s latest trivial pursuit question.&rdquo; Perhaps, but we&rsquo;re assuming that Jef isn&rsquo;t the only Chicago truck owner who&rsquo;s anxious about driving the Drive.</p><p>Regardless, the best account I could get is a historical one, and it comes from the top source on Chicago maps: Dennis McClendon, who produced maps for the Encyclopedia of Chicago. And get this: He even drew the original CTA system map.</p><p>Anyway, McClendon says the truck issue likely gets down to a mentality, one which dates back to the late 1800s when Lake Shore drive was first planned.</p><p>&ldquo;It was to be a pleasure drive,&rdquo; McClendon explains. &ldquo;It was not to be a traffic carrying arterial, it was a way to enjoy the park in your carriage or your brougham.&rdquo; (A brougham being a light carriage that was drawn by a single horse.)</p><p>&ldquo;I think it was Thursday afternoons were set aside for fast driving,&rdquo; McClendon says. &ldquo;So the young men who lived on the Gold Coast nearby would bring their fastest trotting horses and their lightweight broughams and race each other.&rdquo;</p><p>By the 1930s, McClendon says, this parkway grew into the Outer Drive and Inner Drive we know today. The idea was to allow more traffic on Lake Shore Drive but this whole concept of a &ldquo;pleasure drive&rdquo; stuck, meaning the proscription against commercial vehicles (pickup trucks included) is really just a holdover, one that&rsquo;s consistent with a bias that kept commercial or &ldquo;working&rdquo; life separate from upper-crust residential life.</p><p>Consider, he says, that fancy apartment buildings once had separate entrances for residents and tradesmen.</p><p>&ldquo;You wouldn&rsquo;t want a scruffy workman carrying his tool box through the front door, just as &lsquo;Miss High Nose&rsquo; was coming out with her poodle,&rdquo; McClendon says.</p><p><strong>Where pickups can&rsquo;t call home</strong></p><p>Jef says he lives in Bronzeville, a South Side neighborhood. As I found out, his ward escapes proscriptions against parking pickups on residential streets. The municipal code is clear on this one, as <a href="#Ordinance2">the relevant section</a>s list exactly which wards pickup trucks can park, so long as the owners work with their alderman to get the proper stickers and permits and their truck is registered properly with the state of Illinois.</p><p>That leaves only two North Side wards where pickups are not welcome to park on residential streets: the 38th and the 39th.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/RS6877_CuriousCityTrucks-5-scr.jpg" style="float: left; height: 183px; width: 275px; margin: 5px;" title="Pickup trucks are easy to find in many of Chicago's residential streets, including this one legally parked in Ward 40. (WBEZ/Shawn Allee)" />When it comes to the 39th Ward, Alderman Margaret Laurino says she does hear complaints about the policy, but they&rsquo;re mostly from newcomers &mdash; not long-time residents.</p><p>&ldquo;My staff often times has been instructed by me to say, &lsquo;Well you&rsquo;re just going to have to park your pickup truck in your garage or find an off site parking space,&rsquo;&rdquo; Laurino says, adding that this has been the case for the 17 years she&rsquo;s been in office.</p><p>As for a change? Laurino says her staff check in with constituents each year about the policy, and for the most part, resident want their residential streets free of pickup trucks.</p><p><strong>&lsquo;Miss High Nose&rsquo; and her poodle at it again?</strong></p><p>If McClendon&rsquo;s theory about the attitude towards trucks on Lake Shore Drive is right, is it fair to say that maybe some neighborhoods just find pickups unappealing, and they&rsquo;re willing to press aldermen to keep the trucks in check?</p><p>Jef doesn&rsquo;t buy that argument (&ldquo;A pickup can be just as easy to look at as an SUV or a hummer or some really ratty car,&rdquo; he says), and the bias against trucks is getting scrutiny from other sources, too. One source is Mike Brockway, the writer behind the <a href="http://theexpiredmeter.com/">&ldquo;The Expired Meter&rdquo;</a> blog, which helps Chicagoans solve driving, traffic or ticket problems.</p><p>Brockway says maybe it&rsquo;s time for City Hall to consider upgrading the policy on truck parking. Right now, it&rsquo;s mentioned in a section dealing with livery vehicles, busses and RV&rsquo;s, despite the fact that, for many owners, they&rsquo;re neither solely commercial nor entirely personal.</p><p>&ldquo;Am I using a vehicle 51 percent of the time to get groceries for my family and bring my kids to school and bring them to violin lessons? And 49 percent of the time I&rsquo;m using it for business purposes?&rdquo; he asks. &ldquo;I mean, how do you define that?&rdquo;</p><p>Brockway calls the parking provision a &ldquo;dinosaur of a piece of law&rdquo; that can give you headaches. &ldquo;My theory on parking and driving laws,&rdquo; he says, &ldquo;is they need to be simple so people can understand them.&rdquo;</p><p>And where do most Chicagoans fall on this issue? Again, it&rsquo;s OK to park in most wards. Residents in the 38th ward had their chance to speak out on the November ballot, and a majority said they would support a law that would allow pickups to park on residential streets.</p><p>But until the municipal code reads crystal clear, Brockway has this advice for pickup drivers, and for Jef: If you&rsquo;re gonna park a pickup, triple-check with the alderman first.</p><blockquote><p><strong><a name="Ordinance1"></a>Regarding Trucks on Lake Shore Drive </strong></p><p>9-72-020&nbsp; Operation of vehicles restricted.</p><p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; It shall be unlawful to operate any vehicle upon any boulevard (a) when such vehicle is used for carrying freight or other goods and merchandise for commercial purposes, (b) when such vehicle is designed primarily for carrying freight or other goods and merchandise, and (c) when such vehicle is used for carrying freight or other goods and merchandise on the outside of the vehicle; provided, however, that vehicles carrying freight or other goods from or to any building or premises abutting any boulevard where it is impossible from the location of the building or the character of the freight or other goods to be received or delivered, to receive or deliver the freight or other goods and merchandise from an alley or a side street or a street other than the boulevard, shall be permitted to enter the boulevard at the cross street nearest the building or premises to receive or deliver the freight or other goods, but shall not proceed further on the boulevard than the nearest cross street. Operators of emergency vehicles and such vehicles excepted by permits issued by the executive director are exempt from provisions of this section. Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions, it shall not be unlawful to operate any of the vehicles described in clauses (a), (b) and (c) on those portions of Interstate Route 55, and the exit and entrance ramps thereto, which lie between the King Drive Interchange and the north and southbound lanes of Lake Shore Drive and the most easterly lane of northbound Lake Shore Drive and the most westerly lane of southbound Lake Shore Drive and the exit and entrance ramps of Lake Shore Drive which lie between Interstate Route 55 and 31st Street; provided that such vehicles are traveling to or from the McCormick Place complex and its support facilities.</p><p>(Added Coun. J. 7-12-90, p. 18634; Amend Coun. J. 11-28-90, p. 26192; Amend Coun. J. 12-11-91, p. 10832; Amend Coun. J. 11-15-06, p. 93351, &sect; 1)</p><p><strong><a name="Ordinance2"></a>Regarding parking restrictions in Chicago neighborhoods</strong></p><p>9-64-170&nbsp; Parking restrictions &ndash; Special types of vehicles.</p><p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; (a)&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; It shall be unlawful to park any truck, tractor, semi-trailer, trailer, recreational vehicle more than 22 feet in length, self contained motor home, bus, taxicab or livery vehicle on any residential street for a longer period than is necessary for the reasonably expeditious loading or unloading of such vehicle, except that a driver of bus may park the bus in a designated bus stand as authorized elsewhere in the traffic code; provided, however that in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, 20th, 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 24th, 25th, 26th, 27th, 28th, 29th, 30th, 31st, 32nd, 33rd, 34th, 35th, 36th, 37th, 40th, 41st, 42nd, 43rd, 44th, 45th, 46th, 47th, 48th, 49th and 50th wards this prohibition shall not apply to the owner of a pickup truck or van weighing under 4,500 pounds who has no outstanding parking violations, when such vehicle is parked at the curb adjacent to the owners place of residence and the vehicle bears a valid and current city wheel tax license emblem and a special parking permit issued in accordance with this subsection.&nbsp; In the 7th, 15th, 10th, 23rd, 35th, 46th and 50th wards this prohibition also shall not apply to the owner of a taxicab who has no outstanding parking violations, when such vehicle is not in service, when the vehicle is parked at the curb adjacent to the owner&#39;s place of residence and when the vehicle bears a valid and current city wheel tax license emblem and a special permit issued in accordance with this subsection. The owner shall apply for a permit for such parking from the alderman of the ward in which he or she resides.&nbsp; The Alderman shall evaluate the vehicle for compliance with relevant provisions of the municipal code and shall issue a special parking permit if the vehicle is believed to be compliant.</p></blockquote><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Tue, 01 Jan 2013 11:13:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/question-answered-why-ban-pickups-lake-shore-drive-where-can-they-park-104631 Wind, waves make for tricky commute http://www.wbez.org/news/wind-waves-make-tricky-commute-103517 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/RS6622_alt_57.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="349" mozallowfullscreen="" src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/52491776?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;portrait=0&amp;badge=0&amp;color=b30000" webkitallowfullscreen="" width="620"></iframe></p><p>High winds and possible flooding could make for a tricky commute in Chicago early this week.&nbsp;The National Weather Service issued a wind advisory and a lakeshore flood warning for Lake and Cook counties.</p><p>National Weather Service Meteorologist Mike Bardou says all commuters, whether they be on foot or driving, should be really careful by the lake.</p><p>&quot;Any roadways along immediate lake shore within hundreds of feet of the lake will have the risk of having water splashing up on them with waves. This may be small scale roads right along the lakefront, or even some of the larger roads such as Lake Shore Drive,&quot; Bardou said.&nbsp;<br /><br />Bardou expects high wind gusts of 55 to 60 miles per hour by the Lake Michigan to continue to the evening hours. The lakeshore flood warning will be in effect until 4:00 Wednesday. Bardou said&nbsp;even if the winds eventually die down, he says the waves will take longer to ease.&nbsp;</p></p> Tue, 30 Oct 2012 10:32:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/wind-waves-make-tricky-commute-103517 New escape routes for Lake Shore Drive http://www.wbez.org/story/new-escape-routes-lake-shore-drive-93621 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-October/2011-10-31/AP Photo Kiichiro Sato_ Charles Rex Arbogast.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Road crews begin work Monday on Lake Shore Drive to make it easier for cars to avoid getting stuck during a blizzard. City workers will begin building two turnaround points after rush hour.</p><p>Both escape routes are on the near North Side - one will be at Armitage; the other at Schiller. Chicago Department of Transportation officials say those spots were chosen because they're prone to snow drifts.</p><p>They will create turnaround access to north and southbound lanes during emergency situations, like last February's 20 inches of snow blizzard. Drivers and vehicles were stranded on the Drive for hours.</p><p>Three lanes in both directions will remain open around the construction zone. The new turnarounds are expected to be completed by late November.<br> <br> &nbsp;</p></p> Mon, 31 Oct 2011 12:37:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/new-escape-routes-lake-shore-drive-93621 Gale warning prompts closure of Lake Shore Drive bike path http://www.wbez.org/blog/city-room-blog/2011-09-30/gale-warning-prompts-closure-lake-shore-drive-bike-path-92675 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-September/2011-09-30/LSD_biker_wave.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The National Weather Service in Chicago has issued a gale warning Friday morning, which is in effect until 1 a.m. Saturday morning.&nbsp;</p><p><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-September/2011-09-30/gale.jpg" style="margin: 10px; float: left; width: 450px; height: 288px;" title="(National Weather Service)">The warning was prompted by high winds, which have created massive waves that have crashed on to the Lake Shore Drive bike path.&nbsp; The Chicago Police Department has closed the path, and has set up blockades from Oak Street Beach to Fullerton Avenue.&nbsp; There have been no reported injuries from the waves, according to Police News Affairs Officer Mike Sullivan.</p><p>During this gale warning, the winds can reach up to 45 knots, which can be up upwards of 50mph.&nbsp; The weather service anticipates waves up to 20 feet and said they can even reach upwards of 30 feet.</p><p>The police department said the blockades will remain until weather conditions improve.</p><p>Twitter group Active Trans LFT (<a href="http://twitter.com/#%21/activetransLFT">@activetransLFT</a>) regularly tracks conditions for those using the Lake Shore Drive path, and have been providing updates to and from users under the hashtag <a href="http://twitter.com/search/%23CHILFT" target="_blank">#CHILFT</a>.&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><embed allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" flashvars="v=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.nbcchicago.com%2Fi%2Fembed_new%2F%3Fcid%3D130845438%26path=${encodedPath}" src="http://media.nbcchicago.com/designvideo/embeddedPlayer.swf" width="576" height="324"></p></p> Fri, 30 Sep 2011 16:22:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/city-room-blog/2011-09-30/gale-warning-prompts-closure-lake-shore-drive-bike-path-92675 Expanding Lake Shore Drive http://www.wbez.org/story/expanding-lake-shore-drive-91119 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-August/2011-08-26/Lakeshore Drive 2_Flickr_Jason Mrachina.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><audio class="mejs mediaelement-formatter-identified-1332483669-1" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2011-august/2011-08-26/lsd-feature-audio.mp3">&nbsp;</audio></p><p>Lake Shore Drive in its present incarnation is a relatively recent addition to Chicago’s landscape. Built in pieces over much of the last century, the road was known variously as Leif Erickson Drive and Field Boulevard before it was christened with its current name in 1946.<img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2011-August/2011-08-26/Lakeshore Drive_Flickr_April Westervelt.jpg" style="margin-right: 15px; margin-top: 10px; margin-bottom: 10px; float: left; width: 350px; height: 467px; " title="(Flickr/April Westervelt)"></p><p>The germ of the idea, however, began in 1882 with Potter Palmer, who wanted the city to build a road along the lakefront to increase property values.&nbsp;And as long as there’s been a Drive there’s been this question about the Drive: To expand or not to expand? And if we expand it, how far north or south should it go?</p><p>In 1933 Lake Shore Drive was extended from Belmont to Foster. In the ‘50s the road pushed further north to Bryn Mawr, and then to Hollywood Avenue in 1957.</p><p>On the South Side, there has been talk of expanding Lake Shore Drive into <a href="../../blog/city-room-blog/2011-07-07/steel-mill-site%E2%80%99s-second-act-88844">the former U.S. Steel South Works site</a>, currently being redeveloped by Chicago based McCaffery Interests. &nbsp;</p><p>But conversations about expanding North Lake Shore Drive beyond its current stopping point have been more controversial.</p><p>The idea was resoundingly rejected in&nbsp;<a href="http://www.dailynorthwestern.com/2.13924/rogers-park-voters-strike-down-lake-shore-drive-extension-plan-1.1979802">a 2004 referendum</a> in which 90 percent of Rogers Park residents voted against the idea of expansion.</p><p style="margin-top: 0.6em; margin-right: 0px; margin-bottom: 1.2em; margin-left: 0px; padding-top: 0px; padding-right: 0px; padding-bottom: 0px; padding-left: 0px; ">Author Neal Samors grew up in Rogers Park and remembers the various LSD expansions. Together with co-author Bernie Judge, Samors tracks the highway’s history in <em>Chicago’s Lake Shore Drive: America’s Most Beautiful Roadway</em>.</p><p>In the audio above, the two explain why the question of expansion has tended to rouse the ire of many North Siders.</p><p><em><a href="../../series/dynamic-range">Dynamic Range</a> showcases hidden gems unearthed from Chicago Amplified’s vast archive of public events and appears on weekends. Neal Samors and Bernard Judge spoke at an event presented by Chicago Architecture Foundation in January. Click <a href="http://www.wbez.org/story/culture/architecture/chicago%E2%80%99s-lake-shore-drive-urban-america%E2%80%99s-most-beautiful-roadway">here</a> to hear the event in its entirety.</em></p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 26 Aug 2011 19:34:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/expanding-lake-shore-drive-91119 New emergency official defends keeping Lake Shore Drive open during blizzard http://www.wbez.org/story/new-emergency-official-defends-keeping-lake-shore-drive-open-during-blizzard-88090 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/108759823.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicago emergency officials are defending how the city handled February's blizzard, including the decision to keep Lake Shore Drive open during the evening rush hour.</p><p>The public comments come after a new report was given to the media outlining how the city should handle the next blizzard that may come Chicago's way. Gary Schenkel is the new head of the Office of Emergency Management and Communications and says he wouldn't have closed Lake Shore Drive before the blizzard hit, either, even though hundreds of vehicles were buried in the rapidly falling snow after traffic came to a halt.</p><p>Joe Schwieterman is a transportation professor at DePaul University.</p><p>"There's kind of a, I think, assumption here that the next crisis is going to be like the last one and so a lot of these measures certainly will help, but there's a feel-good element to this, I think," he said.</p><p>The report recommends cutting out parts of the Lake Shore Drive median so drivers could turn around and having tow trucks close by when bad weather is coming.</p></p> Tue, 21 Jun 2011 10:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/new-emergency-official-defends-keeping-lake-shore-drive-open-during-blizzard-88090 New report spells out what to do next time blizzard hits Chicago http://www.wbez.org/story/new-report-spells-out-what-do-next-time-blizzard-hits-chicago-88085 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/LSD Tim Brown 1.JPG" alt="" /><p><p>A new report out Monday from the City of Chicago recommends making some structural changes to Lake Shore Drive before another major blizzard hits.</p><p>The report recommends officials with the Chicago Department of Transportation look into cutting out chunks of the median along Lake Shore Drive so drivers could turn around in emergency situations. It also suggests towing equipment should be staged along the Drive when extreme weather is predicted and getting specialized towing equipment for the Chicago Transit Authority.</p><p>Hundreds of drivers on Lake Shore Drive had to abandon their cars after three quick accidents occurred during the February blizzard, when more than 20 inches of snow were dumped in a matter of hours.</p><p>"I think the biggest thing we learned from this is that there is limited access for emergency responders on Lake Shore Drive," said Gary Schenkel, the new head of the OEMC, Chicago's Office of Emergency Management and Communications.</p><p>Officials with OEMC also say more surveillance cameras are coming to Lake Shore Drive, up from the 17 already installed.</p></p> Mon, 20 Jun 2011 21:11:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/new-report-spells-out-what-do-next-time-blizzard-hits-chicago-88085 Government officials question how Lake Michigan affects Lake Shore Drive http://www.wbez.org/story/chicago/government-officials-question-how-lake-michigan-affects-lake-shore-drive <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/108759823_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>There is a new focus on the safety of Lake Shore Drive and how Lake Michigan affects it after last week's blizzard. Hundreds of drivers got stuck in the snow there and eventually had to abandon their vehicles.</p><p>Illinois U.S. Senators Dick Durbin and Mark Kirk are calling on federal agencies to look at the safety of Lake Shore Drive given its location next to Lake Michigan. Things like: How do waves affect it? Is it more susceptible to flooding?</p><p>Chicago Mayor Richard Daley said last week the winds are a major concern.</p><p>&quot;We need barriers out in the lake to prevent the Northwest winds coming in,&quot;&nbsp;he said.</p><p>Joel Brammeier, the head of the Alliance for the Great Lakes, said the government has been working for decades on building barriers along the lakefront to cut down on flooding, but more needs to be done.</p><p>&quot;Instead of just building concrete walls, we can be thinking about how to regenerate the Lake Michigan shoreline so it gives something back to the Great Lakes,&quot; Brammeier said.</p><p>He said he's concerned about decreasing water levels in the lake.<br /><br />&nbsp;</p></p> Tue, 08 Feb 2011 11:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/chicago/government-officials-question-how-lake-michigan-affects-lake-shore-drive