Posted on January 24, 2008 9:29 PM
Weekly Update, 1/25/08
EJ&E acquisition. Comments to the Surface Transportation Board (STB) are due on Monday, January 28, regarding CN's proposed acquisition of the EJ&E rail line. We will submit a letter that is currently in final review by the CMAP Board and MPO Policy Committee, and the approved version will be posted to our website on Monday. CMAP's intended role in this process is to:
- Look at the bigger picture and analyze the impacts and benefits from a regional perspective.
- Provide information and analysis to those commenting and interested in the process.
- Demonstrate a leadership role and be a public advocate.
- Ensure a thorough review of the proposal.
A related deadline is February 1, when comments are due on the scope of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). We are drafting another letter to address the EIS. It's important to balance the anticipated transportation benefits and the impacts at the local, regional and national levels. CMAP is officially charged to safeguard and enhance the transportation system, including important interactions with the region’s freight and passenger rail systems. So we are concerned with the viability of our freight and passenger networks as a key part of the economy and overall transportation system that serves northeastern Illinois. Click here for news coverage regarding the acquisition. You can also view a map of the current EJ&E line.
Modeshift Conference. CMAP is among the sponsors of Modeshift on February 28 at the Metcalf Federal Building, 77 W. Jackson Boulevard, Third floor, Chicago. The event is intended to help community leaders and planners calculate and significantly reduce their communities’ transportation carbon footprints. Keynote speaker Martha Roskowski of Go Boulder will offer a first-hand account of how Boulder, Colorado, is approaching this important issue. Registration includes lunch and is $35 for Chicagoland Bicycle Federation members and $45 for non-members. See http://www.biketraffic.org/modeshift. This event is presented by the U.S. EPA and the Chicagoland Bicycle Federation, and it is co-sponsored by the Metropolitan Planning Council, CMAP, and the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission.
DeKalb water conference. CMAP's overall planning area does not include DeKalb County, but the Regional Water Supply Study does in its expanded 11-county area. On Saturday, February 2, 2008, the county's "Go Green" environmental initiative will hold a Water and Conservation Management Conference at the DeKalb County Farm Bureau, 1250 W. Prairie Drive in Sycamore. See http://www.dekalbcounty.org/GoGreen/gogreen.html for details.
Transport Chicago call for papers. Transport Chicago will hold its annual conference on Friday, June 6, 2008 at Illinois Institute of Technology. For over 20 years, more than 200 academics, transportation and planning professionals, and other interested parties have gathered each June in Chicago to learn of recent research and innovations in transportation and to debate current issues in planning and policy. Conference organizers are seeking papers on all aspects of transportation, including planning, public transit, freight, air, rail, and bicycle and pedestrian transportation. Last year’s topics included:
- Facility Design
- Transportation Funding
- Economic Analysis
- Bicycle and Pedestrian Issues
- Market Research
- Bus Rapid Transit (BRT)
- Transit Signal Priority (TSP)
- "Smart" Bus Technology (AVL, APC)
- Community Circulators and Other Non-Traditional Modes
- Transit Oriented Development (TOD) or Sustainable Development
For more information, contact Andrew Parker (847-228-2366 or firstname.lastname@example.org).
Leave No Child Inside. Even through extreme weather, the Chicago Wilderness "Leave No Child Inside" program continues during the winter. Recent suggested activities to keep kids active include scavenger hunts and an effort to recycle holiday greeting cards. See http://www.chicagowilderness.org/whatshappening/index.cfm#i281 for more information.
Regional Transportation Authority call for applications. The RTA has put out a call for project applications under the Job Access and Reverse Commute (JARC) and New Freedom programs. They will host an Open House on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the RTA Offices, 175 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago. This follows completion of the Coordinated Public Transit – Human Services Transportation Plan (HSTP), which was led by RTA in cooperation with CMAP. The HSTP highlights strategies for the region to pursue in better coordinating existing transportation services. For information and to download an application form, please visit http://jarcnf.rtachicago.com/. Applications are due to the RTA no later than 4:00 p.m. CST on March 20, 2008.