Posted on August 08, 2008 5:22 AM
Weekly update, 8/8/08
Weekly Update, 8/8/08
CMAP meetings. A reminder that the Board is not meeting in August. However, the Programming Coordinating Committee will meet at 8:00 a.m. on Wednesday, August 13, 2008 in our offices. Click here for the agenda and materials.
CMAP testimony on proposed EJ&E acquisition. On Tuesday, August 5, 2008, U.S. Representatives Melissa Bean, Judy Biggert, Bill Foster, and Don Manzullo hosted a hearing about the Canadian National railway's pending purchase of the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern railway. I was among several speakers who testified at the hearing, in Chicago's Dirksen Federal Building. Click here for my testimony, and here for related coverage in the Daily Herald and other news media. The federal Surface Transportation Board's draft Environmental Impact Statement remains open for public comment through September 30. See the related STB news release and fact sheet for details on how to comment, along with information about public meetings during August and September 2008.
Congressional testimony on water supply. Click here for details of the recent Congressional hearing in Washington on "A National Water Initiative: Coordinating and Improving Federal Research on Water." CMAP's Tim Loftus testified about the Regional Water Supply Planning Group's efforts here in northeastern Illinois, and regarding the federal government's potential role. The hearing was held by the House Science and Technology Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, chaired by Rep. Bart Gordon of Tennessee. The subcommittee has prepared draft legislation that would support regional efforts to address water use, supply, and demand in the U.S. See a related press release.
Cost of Congestion. When I was called to testify at Tuesday's congressional hearing, CMAP's Bob Dean took my place on the panel hosted by the Metropolitan Planning Council to coincide with release of their "Moving at the Speed of Congestion" report. The study generated a lot of media coverage, which hopefully translates into public awareness of the need to fund our transportation system. Listen tomorrow or Sunday to WIND AM-560's Weekend Magazine for an interview with CMAP senior planner Tom Murtha, regarding some of the solutions that our agency is promoting. The segment airs at about 5:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Chicago Wilderness award deadline. Applications are due by Friday, August 15, 2008, for the Chicago Wilderness Excellence in Conservation Awards. Begun in 2004, the awards honor people and projects that advance the goals of the Biodiversity Recovery Plan. Awards will be presented at the Chicago Wilderness Congress on Thursday, November 13, 2008 at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Click here for a nominating form (opens Microsoft Word file). See http://www.chicagowilderness.org/members/membernews/index.cfm#i338 for more information.
U.S. Census Bureau 2007 county population estimates. CMAP staff have posted analysis of new 2007 county population data released on August 7, 2008 by the U.S. Census Bureau. Click here to visit the bureau's American Factfinder website. Our findings include:
- Since 2000, the regional growth rate is estimated at 4.5%.
- Kendall County total population grew by 77%, the fastest pace of all seven counties in the region from 2000 to 2007.
- Will County population accounted for 47% of all growth in the region (an increase of 171,000 persons) for the seven-year period.
- Cook County was the only county to decline (-1.7%) in total population since 2000.
Coverage included this story in the Sun-Times. For further information, please contact Jon Hallas (312-386-8764 firstname.lastname@example.org).
IDOT fall conference. Save the dates of October 2 and 3 for IDOT's annual Fall Planning Conference, to be held in Moline. For information, contact Betsy Tracy (217-785-2368 or email@example.com).
2008 TFIC Fifth Annual Meeting. The Transportation for Illinois Coalition will hold its annual meeting on September 22, 2008. See http://www.tficillinois.org/Calendar-Events.htm for registration and other details of the meeting, which will be in Bolingbrook.
CTA open houses. The Chicago Transit Authority will hold two open houses regarding a pair of Alternative Analysis Studies, one regarding the Orange Line Extension and another regarding the Yellow Line Extension. The Orange Line open house will be on Tuesday, August 19, 2008, at Ford City Mall, Lower Level – North Mall Entrance, 7601 S. Cicero Avenue in Chicago. The proposed Orange Line Extension involves a study area bordered by 59th Street on the north, 79th Street on the south, Pulaski Road on the east, and Laramie Avenue to the west. The Yellow Line open house will be on Tuesday, August 26, 2008, at National-Louis University North Shore Campus, 5202 Old Orchard Road, 3rd Floor, in Skokie. The proposed Yellow Line Extension involves a study area bordered by Old Orchard Road on the north, Skokie Boulevard on the east, Dempster Street on the south, and Central Avenue/Harms Road to the west. Both open houses are from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. (presentation begins at 6:15 p.m.), and each is in a facility that is accessible to people with disabilities. See http://transitchicago.com for more.
Conservation Foundation event. On September 10, 2008, the Conservation Foundation will host "Beyond the Basics: INTEGRATING CONSERVATION IN OUR COMMUNITIES." The event runs from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Waubonsee Community College, Route 47 at Waubonsee Dr., Sugar Grove, IL 60554. Industry experts will address current conservation design issues and solutions. Attendees will learn about tools and resources to successfully advocate for and integrate Conservation Design principles and stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) in our communities. The outcome is intended as a win-win-win scenario for developers, municipalities, and residents. To register, visit http://www.theconservationfoundation.org or call 630-428-4500, Ext. 10.