2014 election guide

Articles filed under Pyke, Marni

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  • Fewer collectors, but higher employee costs for tollway Jan 21, 2013 10:44 AM
    The advent of I-PASS is making the job of toll collector an endangered species. With an average salary in the $40,000s that should save personnel costs ... shouldn't it? But even though the workforce shrunk from 1,751 in 2006 to 1,595 this year, spending is still up. In 2006, the authority spent $80.5 million on salaries and wages compared to a budgeted $88.7 million this year (not including sworn state police officers).

     
  • Readers lament Amtrak delays, baggage bedlam Jan 14, 2013 4:05 AM
    Judging from recent letters, it’s been a season of discontent for In Transit readers stymied in their simple desire to get from Point A to Point B without incident. Columnist Marni Pyke possesses neither an engineering degree nor a cement truck to fix everyone’s transportation woes, but she does provide answers to commuters' questions.

     
  • Battery dream team will spark innovations in cars, grid Jan 7, 2013 5:12 AM
    Can the science wizards at Argonne re-invent the massive, expensive batteries that power electric cars so that you could afford one? That's the hope, say researchers with the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research. “We're pulling together the best scientific minds in the country to look at new ways to store energy,” said JCESR Deputy Director Jeff Chamberlain, a surface chemist who lives in Aurora.

     
  • Planes, trains and automobiles: A look at 2013 Dec 31, 2012 5:16 AM
    Today we will journey — to the future! Sort of. Four experts have lent their visionary powers to forecast the major transportation stories of 2013, including the deadline for Chicago to resolve a dispute over expansion at O'Hare, better baggage platforms that would make things easier for Metra riders and the Illinois tollway will spend about $412 million for widening the eastbound Jane Addams Tollway (I-90) in 2013.

     
  • Toll hikes, NATO among 2012's top transit stories Dec 24, 2012 5:05 AM
    So what were the top transportation stories of 2012? Higher tolls? Higher Metra fares? Feuding transit agencies? Accusations of racial discrimination? Coffee banned on trains? Turning tollways into freeways? The answer is all of the above. Plus readers - like you - weigh in.

     
  • Readers sore over Metra fare hikes, red-light tickets Dec 3, 2012 8:03 AM
    Readers have their say in our InTransit column, sounding off about the latest Metra fare hikes, red-light cameras on Route 12 and more.

     
  • Will new chairman bring Metra some Irish luck? Nov 26, 2012 5:30 AM
    Can a Southwest Side boy understand the travel needs of the Northwest and West suburbs? New Metra Chairman Brad O'Halloran thinks so. “We can’t even address growth right now,” O’Halloran said. “What we have to do is catch up on the daily maintenance issues." Plus CTA fare hikes, readers' reaction to Metra fare hikes and your gridlock alert.

     
  • How $2 billion in campaign cash could have been spent on Illinois roads Nov 12, 2012 12:20 PM
    President Obama and Gov. Mitt Romney had spent about a collective $2 billion on their campaigns. What would that kind of money buy if it wasn’t spent on negative ads? For starters: A bunch of railway grade separations to protect drivers and pedestrians from trains and relieve freight congestion in the Chicago region or new buses and train cars for Pace, Metra and the CTA or a completed Elgin-O’Hare Expressway and western bypass around the airport.

     
  • Do you know your driving IQ? Nov 5, 2012 5:27 AM
    Columnist Marni Pyke can't believe she almost flunked the written test when renewing driver's license. There were 805,682 written driving tests given in 2011. Of those, 737,568 were passes, 68,114 were failures. You’re allowed to get six of the 35 questions wrong. Any more, and you flunk.

     
  • Paratransit advocates still seething over 'limo' comment Oct 29, 2012 12:27 PM
    Thanks to the binders full of emails I received on paratransit, I'm turning the column over to you today. But that's not the only hot transportation topic this week. We've also got some feisty comments on red-light cameras, plus IDOT explains why work on Butterfield Road is taking soooooo long. To recap, Regional Transportation Authority Chairman John Gates apologized Wednesday for comments he made to the Daily Herald Oct. 4 about paratransit, the pickup service for riders with disabilities. Gates had compared paratransit to a “federally mandated limousine service.”

     
  • Limo service? RTA chairman laments cost of paratransit Oct 15, 2012 10:34 AM
    Regional Transportation Authority Chairman John S. Gates Jr. says paratransit loses "a ton of money" each year. And as ridership goes up for what he says is like a "limousine service," the agency will lose even more. "It's hugely expensive, but it's something we have to do. It's the law. It's a civil right,” he said.

     
  • Funding feud could lead to transit 'Armageddon,' RTA chief says Oct 8, 2012 5:55 AM
    There's hope the feud between the Chicago Transit Authority, Pace suburban bus division and Metra commuter rail over about $184.8 million in discretionary sales tax funds plus a $17 million surplus from 2011 will be resolved, but you never really know. ”Now you have a deal, but the next day — you may not have a deal,” said RTA Chairman John Gates.

     
  • Chicago, suburbs at impasse over transit funding Oct 1, 2012 1:20 PM
    Are the CTA, Metra and Pace on a collision course? Is the Chicago versus suburbs feud alive again? And, what fab transportation events can I go to this week? Columnist Marni Pyke answers these and other transportation questions.

     
  • Tollway growth leaves homeowners in bad spot Sep 17, 2012 1:15 PM
    It's bad to live in a neighborhood targeted for a construction project. It's even worse when you have to negotiate prices at a time when the housing market's shot. There's a sadness around the neighborhood where the Illinois tollway is building an interchange with the Tri-State and I-57. ”I don't know what I'm going to do or where I'm going to go,” said resident Sara Emerson.

     
  • Transit writer takes ride on wild side — almost Sep 10, 2012 5:23 AM
    I get my kicks on Route 855. It’s my kind of maverick, stick-it-to-the-man Pace bus. Now, if you’ve ever sat stupefied in a Pace bus as it bumbles through suburban traffic, going rogue is the last thing you associate with a Pace commute. But Route 855 is special. Why? Shoulder-riding. On the Stevenson Expressway (I-55).

     
  • Tollway oases still have vacancies, but not weeds Sep 3, 2012 7:00 AM
    Fried chicken. Jewelry. Cappuccino. Tacos. Burgers. Gyros. Vacancies. But not as many weeds. Columnist Marni Pyke hits the road for a trip of a lifetime to seven tollway oases. Notorious for insipid revenues and patronage contracts during the era of former Gov. Rod Blagojevich, the seven oases have kept a lower profile with a new regime at the agency. Here's what she found.

     
  • ‘Waste’ or want? Readers split on high-speed rail Aug 27, 2012 4:58 AM
    High speed rail in Illinois? Not so fast, you say. The idea of spending from $1.4 billion to $4 billion to allow trains to travel at 110 mph from Chicago to St. Louis made some readers’ apoplectic, peeved others and pleased a few.

     
  • Can our roads weather the storm? Aug 20, 2012 1:32 PM
    Record-breaking heat buckles a railway track July 4, causing a derailment, bridge collapse and the death of a Glenview couple. A freak blizzard Feb. 1, 2011, engulfs Lake Shore Drive in snow. Unprecedented rainfall July 23, 2011, floods the suburbs, shutting down major roadways and intersections. July was the third hottest on record in Illinois. Uncommon weather is becoming common.Can our roads handle it?

     
  • Love high-speed rail? Hate it? Here’s your chance to opine Aug 13, 2012 5:10 AM
    Are five more daily trips and a shorter time to get from Chicago to St. Louis worth $3 billion? Is 110 mph really “high-speed” compared to the 200 mph bullet trains of Asia? What suburb will serve as a stop along the route? Plus, readers bash early train station closings, a big bike tour with prizes and traffic hotspots.

     
  • Solving your pressing transit mysteries Aug 6, 2012 5:14 AM
    Pace Cubs bus quirks, incorrect stamps on Metra passes, tollway oasis beefs - this week's In Transit column looks at your questions on transportation. Batting first is Cubs fan Richard Bauer of Wheaton, who says Pace’s Wrigley Field Express bus is a home run on the way to the game, but the route home is a curve ball. The round-trip bus picks up suburbanites in Lombard and Schaumburg.

     
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