… that City Council is seriously considering making permanent the prohibitions of turning from Ridge onto Grove and the mandate of turning right only from Grove onto Ridge between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Readers – and drivers – will recall that those restrictions were tried on a pilot basis in April and City traffic staff report that “The trial restriction has been successful in mitigating traffic accidents at the intersection. In 2015, there were 23 accidents between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., and in 2014 there were 15 accidents during that time period. During the trial period from April 13 to Sept. 30, there has been only one accident at the intersection.”
… that the 25 mph speed limit on Sheridan will run from South Boulevard to the north City limits. The same 25 mph limit will be on Burnham Place.
… that, as construction season is winding down, most of Evanston’s streets are in good shape, and most, if not all, of the repaving of alleys has been completed. The West Howard Street traffic signals are hung, and safe neighborhood lighting has been installed on Mulford and on Payne. Maintenance on the City-owned parking decks has been completed and parking lots resurfaced. It is almost time to tuck in the trucks, cats, and steamrollers for the winter. But send in the plows.
… that snow parking regulations kick in on Dec. 1. A lot of information and clarification is available on the City’s website, cityofevanston.org, but the short of it is this: Pay attention to the signs and the sirens. If the sign says not to park on a certain side of the street until, say, 6 p.m., do not park there before that time, even if the street looks plowed and clear. Trucks and plows often sweep back through streets to make sure they are good to go. Also, if you live on a snow route and snow is falling or predicted, do not park there overnight. The City offers a lot of ways for residents to be alerted to snow emergencies – through the website, Twitter, Facebook, email, radio (AM 1650) or text.
… that, speaking of snow, residents and property owners should remember that it is their responsibility to clear sidewalks sufficiently to allow passage after a two-inch snowfall. And everyone should chip in to make sure fire hydrants are visible and accessible during the winter.
… that the City has implemented a temporary traffic control on Sheridan Road between Arnold Place and Sheridan Square through Nov. 23, to upgrade a new water service connection. Work will take place from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Drivers are asked to use caution, since there will be workers and equipment in the street. Parking will be prohibited and modified traffic patterns will be established.
… that a couple of new public art projects are gracing the downtown area, one already completed and the other just begun. Last week was Jack Weiss’s mural commemorating the Electroliner trains of the Chicago North Shore & Milwaukee Railroad. The southernmost stop on the North Shore Line, which ran to Milwaukee, was at Church and Benson. Mr. Weiss’s mural notes that this year is the 100th anniversary of those high-speed trains – not too many top that 100-miles-per-hour speed.
And, beginning with a utility box just over a block away is the “Outside the Box” art project, conceived and executed by ETHS senior Emily Lubin. Her project will beautify Evanston by covering the City’s utility boxes with artwork. The first box, on the southwest corner of Church and Sherman, is covered with an image from Evanston photographer Ted Glasoe of a Lake Michigan sunrise. What a great idea.
… that Crain’s reports that the building at 1007 Church (northeast corner of Oak and Church) is being sold for $30 million. The building sold for $27 million in 2007, but the next price, after the great crash, was only $9.6 million.
… that parking for business employees and commuters in the north part of town will be even tighter, as the Transportation/Parking Committee and City staff recommend that the City create another residents-only parking district, this one from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m., on both sides of Jackson from Lincoln to Central, both sides of Rosalie from Jackson to Asbury, and Asbury, west side from Lincoln to Rosalie.
… that GasBuddy.com reports that average retail gasoline prices in Chicago rose 4.4 cents per gallon in the first week of November, according its daily survey of 1,437 gas outlets in Chicago. This compares with the national average that has increased 0.5 cents per gallon in the same time period to $2.21 per gallon, according to gasoline price website GasBuddy.com.
… that the Evanston Police Department will join the Statewide Illinois Click It or Ticket campaign, thorugh Nov. 27. Rsidents are asked to buckle up, drive sober, and encourage loved ones to do the same. Wearing a seat belt is the best defense against an impaired, distracted or reckless driver.
… that starting Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 24, and through Jan. 2 of next year, the City will offer free parking in the three City-owned downtown parking garages (Maple Avenue, Sherman Avenue and Church/Clark) and at the lot on Chicago just south of Dempster (1234 Chicago). The free parking will be weekdays between 5 p.m. and midnight and all day Saturday.
… that State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey at the University of Illinois reports that the statewide average temperature for October was 59.8 degrees, 5.4 degrees above normal, and the 7th warmest October on record. The statewide average precipitation for October was 2.38 inches, 0.86 inches below normal. Illinois has experienced above-normal temperatures in 9 out of the 10 months in 2016. As a result, this is the fourth warmest January through October on record for Illinois at 58.0 degrees and 2.5 degrees above normal. The warmest January-October was in 2012 with 59.1 degrees. The president-elect does not believe in human-caused climate change; the Doomsday Clock for climate change, though, is about three minutes to midnight.
… that, according to NASA, the full moon that rose on Nov. 13 was the closest one to Earth since 1948. In clear viewing conditions, the moon not only appears 30 percent brighter, but also 14 percent larger. Humanity won’t get another show like this one until Nov. 25, 2034.
The Traffic Guy Thinks …
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.