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CONTACT:
Ted Villaire
Active Transportation Alliance
312-427-3325 x288
Mobile: 312-563-1118
ted@activetrans.org

Riders for Better Transit congratulates CTA on Red Line south re-opening

CHICAGO, Oct. 20, 2013 – Transit riders rejoiced today as Red Line service on the CTA’s south branch reopened after a five month closure for reconstruction. Public transit is vitally important on the South Side of Chicago (and throughout the city) because it provides an affordable, convenient and healthy way to get around the city. The re-opening of the Red Line means faster, more reliable service for thousands of South Side Chicagoans.

Throughout the five month closure, the Active Transportation Alliance has remained connected with the hundreds of South Side residents and community groups who signed the Red Line South Riders Bill of Rights, a statement that asked for accountability from the CTA during the Red Line closure. Many South Side organizations have been working hard to improve transit in their neighborhoods. This Bill of Rights was a chance to bring together transit riders and community groups on the South Side of Chicago in a unified voice. Now the group is speaking up to say “thank you” for keeping the project on track.

“Our partners on the Red Line South Bill of Rights are very happy to see this project completed on time and under budget, and are looking forward to a faster commute,” said Brenna Conway, Campaign Manager for Riders for Better Transit.

Across the board, Active Trans’ partners and members have made it clear that the CTA did an excellent job with the interim service. The extended hours and added frequency of trains on the Green Line was noted as particularly helpful during this time, and something Active Trans would like to see continued beyond the reinstatement of the Red Line.

“I’m very happy the Red Line will be back up and running,” said Cassandra Perry, resident of Mercy Housing’s Englewood location. “The Green Line runs just like the Red Line did, and we want that service to continue just as it is.”

The re-opening of the Red Line is a huge success for the CTA, one that Active Trans hopes can be carried forward into additional transit service projects Chicago needs, such as the Red Line South extension to 130th St.

Tiffany Hightower, Executive Director of Developing Communities Project, reaffirms the need for the extension of the Red Line. "Developing Communities Project has been organizing for the Red Line Extension for over 11 years,” said Hightower. “We recognize the critical importance of ensuring transit equity first for all the residents of Chicago. We applaud the work that was completed to upgrade the Red Line and we acknowledge the necessity of the pending redesign project. As we look into the near future, we are excited about the final project in this trilogy, which must be the extension of the Red Line South to the end of the city's borders. The completion of this phase of the project will speak volumes for transit equity. It also directly translates into unspeakable opportunity for the Chicago residents that live beyond 95th St."

Active Transportation Alliance is a member of the Developing Communities Project and supports the goal of providing better transit to Chicagoans south of the Red Line’s current 95th St terminus.

Riders for Better Transit is a project of Active Transportation Alliance (Active Trans). The Active Transportation Alliance is a non-profit, member-based advocacy organization that works to make bicycling, walking and public transit so safe, convenient and fun that we will achieve a significant shift from environmentally harmful, sedentary travel to clean, active travel. The organization builds a movement around active transportation, encourages physical activity, increases safety and builds a world-class transportation network. The Active Transportation Alliance is supported by more than 7,000 members, 1,000 volunteers and 40 full-time staff. For more information on the Active Transportation Alliance, visit www.activetrans.org or call 312.427.3325.

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