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The Tally Ho

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Sympathy? No.

This is the best news on the Dan Ryan reconstruction project that I've read... well, ever. Non-Chicagoans may be living in blissful ignorance; the Dan Ryan project is knocking the southern half of Chicago's 90/94 highway out of commission for the next three years or so, removing four express lanes and leaving only two lanes of highway during construction. The ad slogan proclaims: "There is a way out! Re-route!" Re-routing has indeed kept the construction from becoming a major crisis, as travel times are still within somewhat reasonable limits for most of the alternate routes. The transportation department has spent so much time scaring us about the inconvenience of this construction project that the reality is not so bad.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that some commuters are pretty miserable using public transportation, however. The lede states, I kid you not, "Commuters Bemoan the Loss Of Quality Time in Cars." When taking public transit, the miserable commuters say, they have to deal with crowds! And weather! And (gasp) walking to and from train stops! They can't lug around 45 pounds of stuff! Occasionally people walk up and try to sell them things! Oh, the humanity!

Ann Schue chokes up when saying that she misses her car. She has been driving to a faraway mall on the weekends, instead of the mall close to her suburban house, because she misses driving so much.
Frank Pierson lives five blocks from an el stop. However, he used to drive to work and pay $18 every day to park in the city. He's unhappy about the peddlers on the train.
Jack Sloan is a regular on the train and hates that there are so many new riders using cell phones. (Okay, I can feel a little sympathy for his plight.)

Suddenly I'm starting to see this project as shock therapy for some of our suburban neighbors: we live in a city, we have to accomodate each other, and it's incredibly wasteful and selfish to drive in a town where public transit is a viable option. The travel times have gotten much worse, yes. But if you really hate to lose another fifteen minutes of your commute, you could move into the city. There are still some big houses left on the Green Line going for pretty darn cheap.

2 Comments:

  • Wow, what a bunch of whiny over-privileged gits!

    By Anonymous Stephanie, at 5:22 PM  

  • Indeed! I should point out, in all fairness, that when they come for my vice I will be just as whiny and miserable. Hopefully, however, I'll have the grace to not do it in the national news.

    What is my vice of privilege, I wonder? Alpaca? Or blog time? I must go think on this.

    By Blogger Trope, at 11:43 PM  

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