CTA ANNOUNCES SERVICE IMPROVEMENTS ON ELEVEN BUS ROUTES

April 20, 2004
4/20/04

The Chicago Transit Authority is enhancing its bus service by adding a new rush hour peak direction express route along Lake Shore Drive; returning two routes, including one along Lake Shore Drive, back to their original routing; making permanent an experimental change on one route; making modifications to a route that will provide more convenient overnight service; changing the terminals of two routes; extending weekday evening service on two routes; modifying a route to better serve Northwestern University and improving weekday service on one route. Some of the changes are related to the experimental restructuring of routes serving the Lake Shore Drive corridor, which began last August.

The improvements will benefit customers by providing additional transit options, more direct and convenient service and reduced travel times. The changes will take effect Sunday, April 25.

The changes are:

New Route ? #148 Clarendon/Michigan Express will enter Lake Shore Drive at Irving Park (which the #145 did during the first part of the experiment). #148 buses operate peak direction express service during morning and afternoon rush periods. Morning trips will operate between Wilson/ Ravenswood and Michigan/Congress. Afternoon trips will operate between State/Congress and Wilson/Ravenswood. Trips will operate express on Lake Shore Drive between Irving Park and Delaware. This will provide faster service during peak times for customers living north of Irving Park to Michigan Avenue.

#N4 Cottage Grove is being rerouted to add overnight owl service through the Illinois Center complex and a new southbound stop at Michigan/ Randolph, which also serves #151 Sheridan and #N66 Chicago buses. Adding #N4 stops to the location creates a convenient transfer point for customers looking to complete their trips to the South Side. Service will run from Illinois Center to 63rd/Cottage Grove via Michigan north to Randolph; Randolph east to Columbus; Columbus north to South Water; South Water west to Michigan; Michigan south to Randolph; Randolph west to State; State south to Washington and the existing #N4 Cottage Grove route. The #N4 will continue to serve the downtown owl terminal at State/Washington.

#18 16th/18th buses were extended eastbound to connect with the Cermak-Chinatown station on the Red Line as part of a service experiment launched in December 2002. Due to increased ridership as a result of this experiment, the CTA is making this extension permanent.

#X21 Cermak Express returns to its original hours and routing between North Riverside Park Mall and McCormick Place. As part of an experiment implemented on December 22, 2002, #X21 service was adjusted to servedowntown and the Medical District. A second 180-day experiment was approved last June, routing the bus along Damen instead of Marshall Boulevard and Ogden. Low ridership to the Medical District and downtown is the key factor in returning the #X21 to its original route and schedule. Service hours will be Saturdays, Sundays and holidays between 7:40 a.m. and 7:40 p.m. Customers needing to travel to destinations formerly served by the #X21 can transfer to#50 Damen or #60 Blue Island/26th buses.

#37 Sedgwick/Ogden bus route moves its south terminal from Cermak/Karlov to the newly reopened Pulaski station on the Cermak (Douglas) branch of the Blue Line. The new bus turnaround at the station is protected from inclement weather and provides a direct connection to the Blue Line.

#72 North buses will begin improved service west of Narragansett to Harlem. Every bus, instead of every other bus, will run beyond Narragansett to/from Harlem from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. every ten minutes on weekdays. Service west of Narragansett to Harlem will run later on weekday evenings. The last bus will leave Harlem at 12:06 a.m. instead of 10:50 p.m. allowing for improved connections with Pace and area employers. Buses leave Harlem at 10:45 p.m., 11:05 p.m., 11:25 p.m., 11:45 p.m. and 12:06 a.m.

#96 Lunt buses operate to a new west terminal at Devon/Kedzie providing service into Lincolnwood Town Center instead of the Skokie Industrial Park. Thisprovides direct service for shoppers and employees of the shopping center and a nearby grocery store.

#145 Wilson/Michigan reverts back to its original routing prior to the 180-day experiment to restructure bus service along the Lake Shore Drive corridor that took effect last August. Based on customer feedback and staff observation, this change will help alleviate crowding on the #146 Inner Drive/Michigan Express route in the densely populated corridor between Belmont and Irving Park. #145 buses will enter and exit Lake Shore Drive at Belmont, operating south on Michigan Avenue and north on State Street in the Loop.

#152 Addison service will operate one half-hour later on weekday evenings. The last eastbound bus from Cumberland will leave at 9:40 p.m. instead of 9:10 p.m. and the last westbound bus from Lake Shore Drive will leave at 10:30 p.m. instead of 10 p.m.

#156 LaSalle service will operate 30 minutes later on weekday evenings. The last southbound bus will leave Belmont/Halsted at 7:30 p.m. and the last northbound bus will leave Desplaines/Harrison at 8:05 p.m.

#201 Central/Ridge will operate on Sheridan instead of Sherman in northeast Evanston to better serve Northwestern University.

Information on all CTA service can be found by calling 836-7000 from any local area code or on the web site at www.transitchicago.com.

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