Sketchy transportation plans drag down Chicago's Olympic bid
Chicago's transportation plan for the 2016 Olympics scored low marks, which helped push the city down to a bronze medal in the standings among the four city's named as finalists Wednesday.
The International Olympics Committee rated Chicago's bid in third place on technical issues behind Tokyo and Madrid.
From the report:
"Most venues along Lake Michigan coastline are well connected by roads and motorways, but appear to be some distance from rail stations. . . .
"There is a lack of detail concerning inter-cluster transport. Should Chicago be selected as a Candidate City, careful traffic management in the central cluster as well as within and between the other relatively large clusters, would be required.
"Few indications have been provided about spectator, volunteer and workforce transport operations."
The report noted that Chicago plans to spend $27 billion on road and transit projects, but only listed $2.7 billion in actual projects. So, call it a wish list.
I've already seen comments here in other threads that we should blame Huberman and the CTA for these failures. I disagree. The state Legislature has allocated no capital funds since 2004 for infrastructure improvements. And now the CTA is stuck with pressing track maintenance that it must make.
There is some good news.
First, this report was written before the CTA won federal funds for bus rapid transit lanes. Those funds can be used to help connect busy east-west streets to the train lines.
Also, London was in third place in our years ago after the technical phase, and they came from behind to win the 2012 Olympics.
I know there are some regular readers here who don't want Chicago to win the bid. Well I do. And ultimately, it would benefit the CTA and its customers (us), especially if our hometown favorite Barack wins the presidency.