Ventra, the CTA's new fare payment system, will replace Chicago Card… (Terrence Antonio James/Chicago…)
November isn't just for changing leaves—it's also a time for CTA transitions, from Ventra to construction on the Purple and Green lines. Here are the important transit dates for this week and next month.
>>Tuesday: The Illinois Department of Transportation is hosting an event about reconstructing the Eisenhower Expressway and potentially upgrading adjacent Blue Line stations. The town hall will be 7:30-9 p.m. at Gwendolyn Brooks Middle School, 325 S. Kenilworth Ave., in Oak Park.
>>Friday: Let there be heat! The CTA will turn on its heat lamps on elevated platforms for use until March 31. Some lucky riders already have been basking in the warmth, thanks to a few early switch-ons.
>>Saturday: Balance transfer events, in which riders can transfer the balances on their disposable or Chicago Cards to Ventra, continues this month. Riders can transfer their balance 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Saturday at Clarendon Park, 4501 N. Clarendon Ave. The final balance transfer event will be Dec. 13. Chicago Card Plus balances automatically transfer to Ventra when that card is activated.
>>Sunday: A seven-month northern Purple Line track project continues as crews work on the track between Milburn Street and the Linden stop. There will be night track work during the week through Nov. 28, according to the city of Evanston. There will be day track work on Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 1. Take note, Northwestern football fans: Trains will operate on a single track at the Central Purple Line station.
>>Two weekends in early November: Party's over, Green Liners. After experiencing more frequent trains and free rides during the Red Line South project, the Green Line is seeing its own construction and reroutes this month. The CTA is planning on running express shuttles between Roosevelt and 35th-Bronzeville-IIT stations for two weekends this month as crews work on the new Cermak Green Line stop.
>>Nov. 12: Sound off here. The CTA is hosting a hearing at 6 p.m. at its headquarters, 567 W. Lake St., about its 2014 budget, which calls for no fare hikes or service cuts.
>>Nov. 15: Farewell, Chicago Cards. Ventra, the CTA's new fare payment system, will replace Chicago Card and Chicago Card Plus. If riders with these cards have not received their Ventra in the mail, they should call Ventra customer service or consider buying a card at a station. Disposable cards can be used until Dec. 15.
>>Nov. 29: Time to celebrate Xmass transit. The CTA has not released its holiday train schedule yet, but the inaugural annual ride for this train typically is the day after Thanksgiving.
A weekly dispatch from a CTA station of note
This week: Indiana Green Line
Divvy bike stations are fairly common at CTA stations on the North Side but more sparse at CTA stops on the South Side. The Indiana Green Line stop in Grand Boulevard has a Divvy bike outpost, one of 16 racks south of 35th Street between the Dan Ryan Expressway and the lakefront. The ability to connect is important since only one bus, the No. 39-Pershing, stops there.
Next up: Oak Park Blue Line
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