Chicago has been referred to as the “Windy City”. In the upcoming year 2009, due to revised budgets, the economy, and management changes, Chicago residents will see some noticeable changes in the Transportation System including price increases.
The Chicago L is a rapid Transit System that serves the city of Chicago. The L is operated by the Chicago Transit Authority, it is the third busiest rail system in the United States.
Bus Routes and Rail Lines are currently operating on an “Experimental” basis as part of a West Side Suburban Regional Service Plan. Passengers can view all changes and modifications by visiting: www.transitchangeschicago.com.
Chicago Transit Board has approved a 2009 Budget that maintains operating service levels and eliminates a total of 632 positions. The elimination of such a large number of employees was quite a shock to many. In addition, the board approved a fare increase effective January 1, 2009. The increase modified the budget so that the changes to pass prices will be less than 20% increase originally proposed.
The 2009 Budget is an estimated $1,321 Billion dollars. CTA expects to generate 598.2 Million in fares and other revenue, and an additional 723.3 Million in Public Funding. Carole Brown, is the current Transit Board Chairman.
The revised budget will raise the cost of daily and monthly bus passes. Under the revised budget, a 1-day pass would increase from $5.00 to $5.75. In addition, a 3-day pass would increase from $12.00 to $14.00, and a 7 day pass will go from $20.00-$23.00. A 30 day pass will now cost $86.00 and 2 and 5 day bus passes will be completely eliminated.
Cash Transit Card & Chicago Card fares will still increase by $0.50 depending on fare media used. One bright spot in all of the revisions and increases being enforced, fares for Students or the Disabled will remain the same.
Chicago Transit Authority, will continue to examine its operations and find new ways to streamline costs for the better of the passengers. Ron Huberman, President of the Transit Authority, says that customer satisfaction is the number one priority.
In addition to the budget revisions and cut backs, a Capital Improvement Project is being discussed. The Project estimates that 30 Billion dollars will be allocated, and slow zones will be eliminated, and this would bring all operating systems to the state of repair.