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NEWS
November 29, 2013 | By Tracy Swartz and RedEye
The CTA has sent questionnaires to riders still using their Chicago Card Plus cards to solicit feedback on why they have not switched to Ventra, the CTA's controversial new fare payment system. The questionnaires, which ask participants if they have received the Ventra card and why they haven't activated it yet, are accompanied by tips on how to activate the cards. "The goal is to solicit ongoing feedback so that based on any number of answers provided, the CTA can then better assist customers with the information they need to complete the activation process," CTA spokeswoman Catherine Hosinski said in an e-mail.
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NEWS
September 10, 2012 | By Tracy Swartz, @tracyswartz and RedEye
Wednesday may be doomsday for some CTA riders. The CTA board is expected to vote Wednesday morning on the agency's proposed "decrowding" initiative - which would add more trains and buses to some lines, at the expense of more than a dozen bus routes that are up for elimination because they have low ridership or duplicate service. At the hearing last week, which drew more than 100 CTA riders, the CTA revealed the details of how it plans to increase rail service. But perhaps the CTA doesn't need more buses and trains to reduce crowds - it just needs to fix train and bus bunching and the gaps between service.
NEWS
September 2, 2013 | By Tracy Swartz, @tracyswartz and RedEye
Every week this summer, CTA riders have been sounding off to Going Public: What the bleep is up with the beeping at some CTA bus shelters? One Edgewater resident wrote last week, "What is this terrible annoyance? Is someone going to fix it? If you want to seek covered shelter, you have to be subjected to this piercing noise. It's driving me crazy. " The CTA said it finished installing audio components in 258 bus shelters that have digital Bus Tracker signs last month. The sound, which the agency describes as similar to a hospital heart-rate monitor, is emitted every 2 to 2 1/2 seconds to allow visually impaired riders to identify the location of the audio button on the shelter to hear the estimated bus arrival times, the CTA said.
NEWS
May 20, 2014 | By Tracy Swartz, @tracyswartz and RedEye
A Chicago art group is hoping it can raise enough funds to complete its documentary about transforming a CTA rail car into a mobile theater. Joseph Baldwin's and his group Noisivelvet on Monday began soliciting $500 on fundraising site Indiegogo to finish and screen their documentary "El Stories: Art on Track. " In September 2012, Noisivelvet transformed a CTA car into a theater so the acting troupe Waltzing Mechanics could re-enact real-life stories about people riding the CTA. The group performed "El Stories," their long-running show based on interviews with CTA riders, at the Art of Track festival, an event that allowed artists to decorate a chartered CTA train that circled the Loop for an evening.
NEWS
August 13, 2012 | By Tracy Swartz, RedEye
There hasn't been a tighter red vs. blue matchup since the 2000 presidential election. The Division Blue Line station won an online poll over the Sheridan Red Line station by 11 votes. But more CTA riders e-mailed and tweeted their support for the Sheridan stop. In the end, the winner of Going Public's 2012 Crust Station contest, which dishonors the most disgusting CTA stop, is … the Sheridan Red Line stop in Lakeview. The station was derided by riders for its dirty look and moldy smell.
NEWS
November 26, 2012 | By Tracy Swartz @tracyswartz and RedEye
About a quarter of a million travelers were expected to pass through O'Hare on Sunday as the holiday weekend drew to a close. It's days like those that will be a windfall for the CTA next year - but more expensive for some Chicagoans and their families. The agency last week proposed CTA riders pay $5 to hop on the Blue Line from O'Hare. Riders with 30-day passes and other unlimited cards would be exempt from this surcharge, but passengers who pay per ride, either through Chicago Cards or fare cards preloaded with cash, would have to pony up the extra $2.75.
NEWS
July 16, 2012 | By Tracy Swartz, RedEye
This summer, some CTA riders have endured station closures, bus reroutes and slow zones during Chicago's most trying season of the year: construction season. The Granville stop reopened Friday after a six-week closure for renovations as part of a North Side Red Line project that shuttered the Morse stop last month and will close the Argyle and Thorndale stations next month. Downtown commuters saw another set of bus reroutes begin Monday morning for the Wacker Drive reconstruction project.
NEWS
January 7, 2013 | By Tracy Swartz @tracyswartz and RedEye
Now that the holidays are over and more Chicagoans are returning to work, this week will be the first major test of the service changes the CTA implemented last month to reduce crowds on the buses and trains. Finally we'll see where crowding stands - literally. Going Public has noticed some easing on buses and trains since the CTA added service to 48 bus routes and all but two train lines last month. There have been more seats available and more space to move around in the aisles - and yet, some riders still stand in the space by the doors.
NEWS
February 21, 2013 | By Tracy Swartz @tracyswartz and RedEye
Red Line trains will run on Green Line tracks, and CTA riders will be able to ride for free at the Garfield Green Line station, according to the plans the CTA unveiled Thursday for its spring Red Line south shutdown--one of its biggest reconstruction projects ever. As the CTA overhauls track, it will close nine Red Line stations from Cermak-Chinatown to 95th Street from May 19 through Oct. 19. The agency said it will run free shuttle buses to the Garfield Green Line stop from the 95th, 87th, 79th and 69th Street Red Line stations.
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