All around downtown Chicago this morning, there were signs that things are starting to return to normal after a week of civil unrest. Groups of riders were getting off trains at the Clark and Lake CTA station, and a few blocks away, a trio of contractors could be seen taking the boards off the windows of the Old Navy store on North State Street.
Today is the first day in more than a week that city buses and trains were stopping anywhere near downtown. Fairy Press, who works overnights in the Loop, said she had been spending about $60 a day on ride-shares, commuting to and from work, compared to about $5 a day on the CTA.
“I mean it was pretty bad, considering essential workers still have to get to work. So it was a hassle,” Press said of the city’s decision to severely restrict public transit and access to downtown after big protests and looting.
Ivory Rufus, a manager at the Dunkin’ Donuts just down the block from the Clark and Lake station, said business was picking up now that the CTA is running downtown again. His donut shop reopened last Tuesday after being closed for two days following weekend vandalism. But the store still has boards over its windows, and Rufus laughed when asked if things were returning to normal.