||[Feb. 13th, 2007|11:12 am]
Chicago Transit LiveJournal
I have to wonder just how much thought went into the fancy new bus shelters that started going up a few years ago. You know the glass advert ones by JC Decaux (I think that's the name). |
I know there are some that have been made with glass on all sides with a missing pane on each longer side to walk into the shelter. I can't remember exactly where some of those are, but I know where they are not which seems to me to be the most OBVIOUS location for them. I'm talking about all along inner LSD. You know the part of the city that absolutely gets the worst of the wind problem because there are no buildings to help break up the wind. Why would they not get those for this area. I'm not going to criticize the buses for being late today, we all know how tough it must be to drive in weather like this. I would gladly wager there was a giant increase in public transit today... all the people who didn't want to take the risk, so kudos to my driver that even though he was late getting to us (maybe they were missing a bus and that's the reason for the long wait).
I am even going to give a big plus to the CTA for making sure the shelters were well shoveled. It was easily 3 or 4 inches outside of where they shoveled for the bus shelter, and merely a barely visible dusting of it on CTA property. I am however going to criticize them for their poor shelter planing. I didn't use the bus last year, I was too die-hard convinced the L was the way to go. So I didn't see just how poor a job they did.
I can't say all because I didn't see every one of them, but most of the bus shelters on the west side of the street (Southbound shelters) are the 3 sided shelters. With the open side facing east (the empty space towards the lake). As a result, standing in the shelter is a guaranteed way to get beaten by the wind and in many cases snowed in to the knee due to the drifting snow, because that back wall serves as a great snow STOPPER. The only way to get relief is to stand on the backside of the shelter to defend yourself from the snow. But with the watery windows and fogging windows because you're breathing on them, you can't tell if a bus is coming and surely the driver can't really tell that you're standing there. Or in the case of where 3 and 4 busses stop there, you can't tell if it's your bus and they can't tell if you're waiting for them.
CTA you could have done either of the following which would be a world of improvement. Flip the shelter around, so the wall faces the street or put in one of the nifty 4 wall shelters! I just don't get why you didn't.
Also. I don't know if any of you have seen it, but some of the shelters were advertising a show on Discovery channel. They had fitted in tvs and were airing commercials of the show in a small square cut into the poster. Here's my thought, I know the company advertising there is paying for that electricity, but that means there is indeed electricity there. Hey, your advertisers could advertise that they are paying to keep your riders warm! Then we'll definitely consume from them. Why not fit in a simple heating element which people can activate like they do on the trains. I know, you're going to say, because of the bums. They'll take over the shelters and sleep there, well maybe a valid working card is required to activate it or maybe it can only run for 15 mins then off for 15? I'm not entirely sure the solution to that but anything would be great. What about solar energy? Have they investigated the use of solar power. Perhaps adding panels to the roof of the shelters and using it for warmers? I realize not all of these things are actually possible, but hey, turning that damned shelter around would have been EASY! and while you're at it, maybe put 2 or double long/wide ones at extremely busy stops? My morning stop is no problem, but the night one, 5 buses start from where I board and you have all of those riders trying to stay out of the elements.