Wednesday, July 9, 2008

CTA: Update Wilson L Signage

Next time you are on the L, notice how all of the stations on the north side have shiny new platform signage for each station. For example, here is how the Lawrence L sign looks:
Now check out our long neglected Wilson L station signage:
Notice a difference? Out-of-towners are often confused as why the sign is "blue" if it is the "red line." Wouldn't it be nice if our station were given the same attention as other stations on the north side?

The Red Line will BYPASS Wilson for the next two weekends for repairs. Read all about it at the Chicago Tribune here.


  1. my aunt and mom were here a few weeks ago. They were going to meet me after work, so I was trying to explain the el to them. Needless to say, my aunt kept thinking it was the blue line.

  2. I'm always amazed at the subtle, yet obvious, differences between the 48th and 46th wards.

  3. The Bridges of Uptown (County) come to mind, as does the stretch of LSD between Irving and Foster and the ornamental streetlights and streetscaping that was installed in the 44th, 47th and 48th wards surrounding the 46th.

    If Alderman Shiller burns as many bridges with people outside the ward as she does inside, there is probably a line of politiicians just waiting to see her "get hers" some day.

  4. What possible difference could it make? The Sheridan stop before and the Lawrence stop after both have the right signs and the riders never change trains....logic dictates they must still be on the red line. Appropriate public funds for things that matter.

  5. Logic also dictates that we don't live in a 3rd world country in America, one with a democracy and a system of commerce. From the view in the heart of Uptown, you'd never know.

    I'm just sayin'.

  6. It makes a difference to me! So I would like to have the signs look the same as the other stops. It is these types of simple things that add up to really upset people. I realize that some of the problems in the neighborhood are long-term problems. But sinkholes, and El stop signs are a 5-minute phone call solution. Maybe if they 46th ward office could remove themselves from all the zoning changes for one day a week some of these things could get done faster. Of course the zoning changes do not take much time either because there is no community input into them. So maybe that is a bad example.

  7. As much as I dislike the alderbeast...does she really have any control over CTA singage for the stops in her ward? I am sure she could make a few calls and ask nicely but wouldn't you think the current president of the CTA who take the Wilson stop daily might be a better candidate to make the update?

  8. To second Sarah's story, my sister also asked me why the sign was blue at a red line stop when she was here from New Jersey. Luckily, I was taking her around town that day so she didn't get confused and make a mistake.

    I think the signage makes a difference for anyone that gets on the train at Wilson, like my friends and family do to get to my place. Maybe I'll start making them walk the extra block from Lawrence since it's got nicer signage.

    Wait, didn't someone just get stabbed there?'s a tough choice, get shanked or a pretty sign! :)

  9. Is it Shiller? A bit, I'm sure she could exert some pressure on Huberman to change it. Of course, wasn't it her that got the CTA to put the turnstiles up on the Broadway side so people can use the street level as a 'warming station.' So yes, she has some authority. Huberman gets on at the shittiest stop on the North Side of the el system, though.

    I like to think it's being neglected because of real plans to build a new one at Montrose as part of WY. I know...pipe dream.

  10. Is it Shiller? A bit, I'm sure she could exert some pressure on Huberman to change it.

    Read the recent article about Ald.
    Bob Fioretti in the Reader
    that UU linked to. It shows what a micro-managing alderman can do for the community.

    "Sam Strain, one of Fioretti’s aides, was taking notes. He’d been on enough of Fioretti’s block-by-block ward tours to know what to expect — ongoing commentary about modern urban life worked around a spontaneously generated list of new chores."

    - - -

    "See these signs, these tow-zone signs? We’re getting all these replaced. Hundreds of signs are being replaced throughout the ward, and you’ll see the difference it makes."

    - - -

    "You know, the people here have been pushed around so long, they accept it. ... But if people don’t know another mind-set and don’t know what’s best, they’ll always accept another level."

  11. I didn't see the article on the earlier post. Thanks for re-posting the link.

    Of course, we talking about two clearly different political philosophies between Shiller and Mr. Fioretti. I don't expect that too change in the near future.

  12. Every time I visit Manhattan, I'm reminded how excellent the New York subway system has become. Granted, I have not been on all of the MTA lines, so I'm sure they have their issues, but I chuckle when I think of Chicago trying to host the Olympics and use our transit system. It would crack under the pressure.

  13. They are obviously still planning on closing the Wilson station and building a new station at Montrose. The only changes that have been made recently at the Wilson station are for safety issues that needed to be fixed ASAP. Lets not waste money just to make things pretty and to help a few visitors that were confused by the colors of the signs. Lets all be glad that we will get a new station with new signs and an elevator/escalator at Montrose.

  14. Are they really planning on building a new station at Montrose? Is it part of the Wilson Yard project?

    It's the first I've heard of it, but it sounds like a brilliant idea. It'd even out the spacing between stops, make visiting the neighborhood more inviting, possibly give us a chance to clean up the Wilson/Broadway intersection.

    Does anyone know of any action we can take to ensure this happens?

  15. Cowboy, how is this obvious to you? Unless you have actual information, your post is pure speculation.

    I was at the Truman College parking garage community meeting this summer, and heard Huberman speak. He mentioned the "possibility" of a future Montrose stop, and nothing more.

    If the city and CTA were serious about putting a CTA stop at Montrose, don't you think there would be some coordination with the Wilson Yard TIF plan? There's no provision or reference in it right now.

    And depending on the type of housing that eventually goes up there, the Wilson stop might look like Lincoln Park in comparison.

  16. Way Smart..

    Little harsh on Cowboy. If Ronny
    Huberman mentioned it then it is more than "speculation."

    Smoke / Fire

    On that note, I use the Wilson L stop once a year. There is not enough Purell in the world to keep my from freaking out at that stop. Im turning Howie Mandel.

  17. "If the city and CTA were serious about putting a CTA stop at Montrose, don't you think there would be some coordination with the Wilson Yard TIF plan?"

    Coordination? There should be. There will be. You just won't hear public commentary about it until about Spring 2010.

  18. They have been putting a lot of work into the Wilson stop over the past six months or so - new roof, new paint job, new platform boards, replastering and repainting of the ceiling in the main entrance, and new stairwell. I am skeptical that are going to be closing down Wilson anytime soon to build another stop two blocks away.