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Thursday, August 8, 2013

Proof That Bike-Share Generates More Foot Traffic Than Free Parking | chi.streetsblog.org


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Divvy user Richard Hurh at the Smoke Daddy docking station. Photo: John Greenfield
[This article also appeared in "Checkerboard City," John's column in Newcity magazine, which hits the streets on Wednesday evenings.]
As I’ve written, the 32nd Ward’s Scott Waguespack is a good guy, and he’s one of Chicago’s best aldermen. A key independent voice and reformer, he’s sort of the Eliot Ness of City Council. He made headlines for leading the opposition to Richard M. Daley’s much-hated parking-meter contract, as well as Rahm Emanuel’sfishy reboot of the deal. Waguespack is generally a strong supporter of sustainable transportation, and he bike commutes regularly—he’s been doored or struck by cars on multiple occasions.
It’s a bummer when a politician you respect is on the wrong side of an issue you care about. So I was distressed to read quotes from the alderman that seemed critical of Chicago Department of Transportation initiatives that convert car parking spaces to productive uses like Divvy bike-share stations, on-street bike racks and “People Spots” seating areas. “Bike shares, People Spots … what will that do to businesses?” he asked at a community event this spring.

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