Sustainable Transportation | WGLT

Sustainable Transportation

Mike Miletich / WGLT

Residents of McLean County have mixed reactions about the possibility of a highway route running between I-74 and I-55. An environmental assessment of the project was discussed during a public hearing Wednesday night at Central Catholic High School.

Emma Shores / WGLT

Future development could someday trigger the need for an East Side Highway. But a new, detailed study of the environmental impact of the possible highway route located approximately a mile east of Towanda Barnes road includes suggestions that could push off the need for decades.  

A retired Eureka school superintendent accepted a plea offer yesterday that would reduce felony reckless driving and reckless conduct charges to misdemeanors.  

A new traffic citation for improper lane usage was also added to the agreement.  He was sentenced to 100 hours of community service,  18 months of conditional discharge, and to pay fines and court costs.

Staff / WGLT

Buses may run on diesel fuel, but it takes money to fill the tank. Late cash transfers from the State of Illinois could mean Connect Transit will have to park its buses and suspend service at the end of the year.

Zagster

Zagster will provide a bike sharing program in Normal, which could be fully operational in 4 to 6 weeks. The Town of Normal will provide the majority of funding for the service, with sponsorship from Advocate Bromenn Medical Center.

Normal Council To Consider Bike Sharing

Sep 5, 2016
Zagster

The Twin Cities could have a bike sharing program soon. Normal Town Council members will vote on a contract with Zagster, which provides the service for small towns and universities.

Amelia at a meeting
Staff / WGLT

The Bloomington City Council has agreed to move forward with an October 10 public hearing for a Tax Increment Financing district in downtown. 

Mike Miletich / WGLT

A new era of public transportation is driving into the Twin Cities. Connect Transit is launching a completely redesigned bus system with new routes, increased bus frequency, and for the first time ever, Sunday service. Connect Transit General Manager Andrew Johnson said the new system is a "game changer" for Bloomington-Normal.

Michael Hill / WGLT

People in the Twin Cities are reacting to the Connect Transit route and schedule overhaul that will start on August 15th. Sheila Eskew of Bloomington said she's happy with the changes.

Staff / WGLT

Normal's mayor still likes the chances of improvements to Main Street despite the federal government's rejection of a grant proposal to improve the corridor.

Staff / WGLT

The Normal Town Council has unanimously approved a Complete Streets resolution. The policy establishes rules for making streets and sidewalks accessible to people using any form of transportation.

City Manager Mark Peterson said budget is a consideration when implementing a Complete Streets upgrade and some improvements are not financially supportable. Peterson said there is enough flexibility to make adjustments in street design based upon the existing conditions.

Normal Council To Consider 'Complete Streets' Policy

Jul 31, 2016
IvoShandor / Wikimedia Commons

A formal Complete Streets proposal is under consideration at Monday's Normal Town Council meeting. If approved, the resolution would further establish rules for making streets and sidewalks accessible to people using all forms of transportation.

Connect Transit

Connect Transit General Manager Andrew Johnson is speaking out against the 2016 Republican Platform released last week at the Republican National Convention. The document calls for the removal of Highway Trust Fund money from public transit systems such as Connect Transit in Bloomington-Normal.

Connect Transit Moving Forward With August Overhaul

Jul 26, 2016
Michael Hill / WGLT

The Connect Transit Board of Trustees approved proposed fee changes as part of a system overhaul that takes effect in three weeks. Beginning on August 15, riders will be able to purchase one-day and seven-day passes for fixed routes as well as 10-ride and 20-ride cards for Connect Mobilitity routes. 

J.P. Mueller / Creative Commons

The Mayor of Normal is giving Congressional testimony on the merits of high speed rail.

Chris Koos is appearing before the subcommittee on Transportation and Public Assets of the Community on Oversight and Government Reform.

Peter Mooney / Flickr

It's been a year since Dean Davis' life changed. On July 7, 2015, he was seriously injured while riding his bicycle on a rural McLean County road. He swerved into a ditch at about 20 miles per hour trying to avoid hitting a car that had stopped suddenly in front of him.

After recuperating from shoulder and back injuries and surgery, he finally rode his bike again this spring. He has ridden six times in the past year.

Connect Transit Announces Fee Restructure

Jun 29, 2016
Michael Hill / WGLT

People in Bloomington are reacting to fee changes proposed by Connect Transit. Under the plan, fixed route fares for one way riders, people with disabilities and senior citizens would remain the same along with one way fares for the Connect Mobility door-to-door service.

Staff

A six-month pilot project that will test limited bus service in northern Normal and southwestern Bloomington was approved by the Connect Transit Board of Trustees. The plan is to provide morning and afternoon service in those areas beginning in mid-August. Those areas would have been cut off by the route restructure slated for the fall.

Ralph Weisheit

During a Bloomington council discussion of a complete streets policy, 4th Ward Alderman Amelia Buragas introduced two related resolutions. She said the resolutions to add transparency to a traffic committee and to hire a traffic engineer would complement a complete streets ordinance.

Eric Sehr / Flickr

Both Bloomington and Normal are moving toward possible adoption of so called complete streets policies. Bloomington aldermen will discuss the policy at their “committee of the whole” meeting Monday evening (June 20).

Michael Hill / WGLT

Connect Transit is asking for feedback on a proposal that would provide limited service to people that will be cut off when new routes and schedules are put in place this August. The plan would provide morning and afternoon service during peak times in northern Normal and southwestern Bloomington.

Jackie Brunell-Lanier‎ / Farm To Food Pantry Facebook Page

Bloomington is one of 50 mid-sized communities across the nation to receive a $60,000 health planning grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). The planning will help bring together stakeholders over the next 18 months to address health concerns -- specifically as it concerns geography and what the grant materials call "built environments."

Staff / WGLT

Some drivers might think a street with curbs, a center line, and plenty of room for traffic is a complete street. But a specific policy adopted by more 730 agencies across the U.S. involves much more.

Both Bloomington and Normal could have such a policy in place this summer that would change how the two communities view a street's uses and users.

Connect Transit Launching New App

May 29, 2016
Staff

A new app is in the works for Connect Transit. The bus system has been using DoubleMap for the last four years, but will switch to another app. General Manager Andrew Johnson said the goal is to have it ready by mid-August when new routes and schedules are put in place.

Transit Board Approves Routes, Schedule Changes

May 24, 2016
Staff / WGLT

New routes and schedules for buses in the Twin Cities were approved by the Connect Transit Board of Trustees. The changes include more frequent service, Sunday service, and more transfer locations. General Manager Andrew Johnson said, as a result of the changes, the yearly operating costs will go up to $14.5 million, which is about $3 million higher than current operating costs.

Connect Transit To Vote On Route Changes After Delay

May 22, 2016
Jim Browne / WGLT

The Connect Transit Board of Trustees will vote on proposed route and schedule changes for the Twin Cities after taking an additional three weeks to consider the proposal. Trustee Jennifer McDade, who moved to table the plan at the last meeting, said they've made progress since three weeks ago.

Connect Transit Steering Away From Uber

May 19, 2016
Staff / WGLT

Connect Transit is eliminating Uber as an option and proposing two new options to close the gaps between new proposed bused routes and where people live.

Michael Gorman

Elena Studier arrived at the 3rd floor WGLT studios by bike, rolling it off the elevator and down the hall.  Not surprising since she's using her bike to explore communities located along passenger rail corridors across the country.

Richard Ericksson / Flickr

Data from the Illinois Department of Transportation shows that the state's pedestrian fatalities increased by 18 percent in 2015.  

There were 150 pedestrian deaths in 2015, compared with 127 in 2014.  Federal data indicates that pedestrian deaths are on the rise nationwide, with almost 4,900 killed in 2014, the highest number since 2005.

Transit Board Postpones Changes

May 3, 2016
Michael Hill / WGLT

A proposal to change routes and schedules for buses in the Twin Cities has been delayed until later this month. Trustees voted 4-3 to table the route change proposal. Concerns about the plan centered around a possible contract with Uber or a similar provider as well as the addition of a Gold route in west Bloomington last week.

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