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CTA, Metra and Pace Announce New Ventra App Will Launch Next Week
The Chicago Transit Authority, Metra and Pace today announced that the new Ventra App will be available to the public on Thursday, November 19.
The Ventra App is the first ever to allow customers to pay for rides on all three transit systems ?CTA, Metra and Pace ? with a few taps on their mobile devices, transforming the way Chicagoans take transit each day.
The free Ventra App, which was developed jointly by CTA, Metra and Pace and funded by the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA)?s Innovation, Coordination, and Enhancement (ICE) program, will provide a ?one-stop shopping? experience that essentially puts a Ventra vending machine as well as a Metra ticket vending machine in customers? pockets. It will be available for use on Apple and Android smartphone and tablet devices via the App Store and Google Play.
The app will offer customers a wide range of functionality ? including some never before available on phones ? including account management, loading of transit value/passes, account notifications and integrated mobile ticketing on Metra. It will also provide access to real-time transit tracker information for CTA, Metra and Pace all in one place. Future phases will offer additional services and conveniences.
The Ventra App will allow Metra customers to use a smartphone to buy any type of Metra ticket with a credit or debit card or a Ventra account. Metra mobile tickets are stored on the smartphone and customers will activate them when boarding the train and display them on their phones? screens when the train conductor checks for tickets. If a Metra customer wishes to create a Ventra account in the app, they can then buy Metra mobile tickets more quickly and recover them if the phone is lost, stolen, damaged or replaced.
The transit agencies determined the first version of the Ventra App was ready for public launch now after several months of exhaustive testing by more than 700 individuals who ride CTA, Metra and Pace. Among the testers were dozens who tried out the app as part of the Smart Chicago Collaborative?s Civic User Testing Group, a highly regarded program that maintains a pool of Chicago residents to road-test new apps under development, as well as customers with disabilities to make sure the app is accessible to customers with visual disabilities.
To learn more about the new Ventra App, please visit http://www.ventrachicago.com/app/ .
3201 N. Ashland- Whole Foods Groundbreaking
With the great partnership between Novak Construction and Whole Foods, we welcomed the ground breaking of the new Whole Foods market located at 3201 N. Ashland. This new location will span over 70,000 square feet and include parking. Whole Foods will bring another economic engine to the neighborhood and be a destination for residents and visitors alike.
This long-stalled site will bring new life to this intersection and our neighborhood.
We want to thank Novak Construction and Whole Foods for their commitment to this project and our community. We also want to thank the neighbors for their support and patience during this development process.
For more information and updates as this project progresses, please visit http://www.44thward.org/3201-ashland/
John Riegler Street Dedication
Central Lakeview Neighbors hosted a street dedication for John Riegler on the 1000 block of George on November 9th. Mr. Riegler is 93 year old long time resident of Lakeview. He is member of CLVN and an active parishioner in St. Alphonsus. Alderman Tunney along with Mr. Riegler's family and neighbors all shared memories. Mr. Riegler was unable to attend do to health issues, however, the dedication was videotaped for him.
Reminder Sidewalk Café Season Ends December 1st
The 2015 Sidewalk Café Permits expire on December 1st. All Sidewalk Cafes, barrier, tables/chairs etc. must be removed from the public way. Failure to remove the café may result in citations issued by the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP).
Renewal applications for the 2016 Café are mailed by BACP in late December/early January and are generally available online (http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/bacp/provdrs/public_way.html) in January.
Wrigley Field Construction Street Closures
On Nov. 2, 2015, the Cubs will begin phase two of renovations at Wrigley Field. During this phase, W. Waveland from N. Clark to N. Seminary will be closed until April 10, 2016 (weather permitting).
During this time, ComEd will be enlarging a manhole at the intersection of Clark and Waveland and trenching from the manhole to approximately 107 ft. into the alley east of N. Seminary. This work is expected to take five weeks. After ComEd has completed their work, Waveland will remain closed for Wrigley Field construction. The south section of the alley east of Clifton will be closed north of Waveland from 11/2/15 through 4/10/16 for Gold Lot construction and water main improvements. A location for vehicles to turn around will be made at the south end of the alley using the Blue Lot.
Clifton will be closed at Waveland for five weeks while ComEd is working. Traffic modifications will be made to accommodate residents on the 3700 block of Clifton. Vehicles on Clifton traveling southbound will not be able to access Waveland during the construction. The parking on the east side of Clifton will be removed in order accommodate two-way traffic (local traffic only) during ComEd?s five week duration. Vehicles will be able to travel northbound on Clifton to access Grace. Access to Clifton from Grace will remain unchanged.
While ComEd is working in the intersection of Clark and Waveland, Clark will be reduced to one lane of northbound traffic only. Southbound traffic will be diverted north of Waveland. Clark will remain two-way south of Patterson. Vehicles traveling southbound that need access to Clark south of Waveland, will be diverted east on Irving Park to Southport, south on Southport to Addison and then east on Addison to Clark.
The north curb lane of Addison will be closed for the full duration of phase two construction from Sheffield to Clark. Addison will maintain two-way traffic throughout the construction. The westbound Addison bus stop, located at the northeast corner of Addison and Clark, will be relocated to the northwest corner of Clark and Addison.
Thank you for your patience as the Wrigley Field construction proceeds. We understand how difficult and inconvenient construction, parking restrictions and street closures can be. We are working diligently with the Chicago Cubs and various City Department to minimize the impact this construction will have on your quality of life and the neighborhood. The Cubs and our office will closely monitor the construction to make any possible adjustments to accommodate neighbors. We apologize for the inconvenience. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel to contact Brittany Burcham at firstname.lastname@example.org or stop by the front desk of the Cubs office building at 3721 N. Clark. Thank you.
Statement from Alderman Tunney on 2016 Budget
My vote today was the most difficult one I have had to make as an alderman. I voted for the 2016 Budget and the associated property tax increase for three reasons.
First, I have been assured that 35 additional police officers will be assigned to the 19th District in 2016, including 25 in the first quarter and another ten during the rest of the year. This is in addition to the eight officers that will be transferring to the 19th District in November.
Additionally, we need our families to stay in the city and we need our neighborhood high school to be the crown jewel of our community. This budget includes a multi-million dollar investment for Lake View High School to increase the academic rigor of the school, inclusive of an honors program, and stronger connections to area elementary schools. The investments provided in the 2016 budget will make Lake View HS the quality neighborhood option which our residents demand. This will further build on the efforts of the current leadership of Lake View High School.
The final reason I voted yes today was because there is no doubt that the men and women of the Chicago Police and Chicago Fire departments are our "Finest" and "Bravest" citizens. Our city could not survive without them. The fact is that as their employer, the City of Chicago made contractual obligations to them with regard to their pensions that must be met, and this budget does that. It is unfortunate that the funding levels were allowed to dip so low and huge lump sum payments need to be made. That is not the fault of our hard working police officers and firefighters who have contributed their share all along, but that was the reality with which the City Council had to deal today.
Moving forward, my colleagues and I need to continue to look at non-tax revenue sources while also considering how we can trim costs without cutting vital city services. We are still faced with great challenges and must address them head-on.
I know these taxes and fee increases are not easy. I will work hard to increase the exemptions of homeowners and level the playing field for small businesses in our City. I will continue to make sure our neighborhood receives the level of city services we are paying for. I believe these investments in our City's long-term financial health, the safety of our neighborhood and education of our children will help our neighborhood continue to grow and prosper.
In other City Council matters, I supported a compromise ordinance that allows ride share services access to the airports while providing relief to the taxi industry. I also voted against allowing the Lucas Museum to establish along the lakefront south of Soldier Field. I do not believe this use is a good fit for the lakefront would like to have seen additional modifications proposal.
I would like to thank everyone who took the time to contact me about these matters and I will keep you posted as things progress.
Residential Parking Guest Passes Expire
Residential parking guest passes expire December 31, 2015. The "2016" guest passes will be available starting Monday, November 2nd. Please note that The City Clerk's Office does not provide a refund or exchange for unused Residential Guest passes.
Chevron aka Big Blue Triumphantly Returns to Lincoln Park
CHICAGO- The Chicago Sculpture Exhibit, in cooperation with the Chicago Park District, celebrated the installation of Chevron, a 50 steel sculpture, by acclaimed artist John Henry on Wednesday, October 21, 2015 at the north entrance to Diversey Harbor. The fencing has been removed completing the installation and renewal of Chevron.
Controversy erupted when Chevron was originally installed in the front yard of a private home near the corners of Armitage and Halsted. The sculpture was removed and has remained in storage since that time. The new location is open and visible from Navy Pier to Montrose Harbor. This location allows Chevron to be seen in its entirety by the public, defining an open space that is entirely appropriate for a large-scale sculpture.
Chicago Sculpture Exhibit partnered with the Chicago Park District, John Novak (the private owner) and Alderman Tom Tunney to bring Chevron to the people of Chicago and install a concrete pad that will allow future sculptures to be brought in after Chevron is taken down. Chevron is on loan to the Chicago Sculpture Exhibit for a minimum of one year with renewal options.
Fall Leaf Removal
Autumn is here, leaves are falling, and it?s time to clean up yards and parkways. Let's all make an effort to clear leaves and other debris before winter.
As a reminder, yard waste should not be thrown in your Blue Cart. Leaves should be bagged and set out next to garbage containers. The Department of Streets and Sanitation will once again provide a dedicated leaf/yard waste pickup between October 19th & November 27th. Simply call 311 to request a special pickup.
Street Cleaning will continue as scheduled through the month of November. Additional cleaning may be scheduled at the discretion of the Department of Streets and Sanitation based on weather conditions.
Your help is needed to keep the sewer drains clean and clear of debris and leaves. These final street cleanings of the year are very important. Debris left on top of sewers freezes over the winter and makes cleaning very difficult and can prevent water from properly draining, street flooding and ice formation.
Leaves and debris MUST NOT be swept or blown into the streets. This creates more work for the sweepers and may clog drains.
Every effort to help clean up our neighborhood is appreciated!
Community Alert (10/26/15) - Armed Robberies
The Chicago Police Department has issued a community alert for recent robberies in the 19th District. Offenders approached the victims on the street while displaying a handgun. I encourage you to walk in groups whenever you can during late-night hours--there is always safety in numbers.
If you ever feel threatened, go to the nearest open business and call 911 immediately.
Always call 911 immediately to report any suspicious persons or behavior. Please spread the word to your neighbors.
Chicago Police Department Notable Arrest
Chicago Police Department has apprehended two men that were suspected of robbing a 23 year old victim on the 3100 block of N. Clark St. The robbery occurred on October 19, 2015 , at approximately 10:45pm. Furthermore, one of the men have been charged with battery for assaulting a 25 year old male who attempted to intervene.
19th District Community Alert - 10/18/15
The Chicago Police Department has issued a community alert for a pattern of robberies in the 19th District. Offender(s) approached the victims on the street or in an alley and used force to steal their wallets and cell phones. I encourage you to walk in groups whenever you can during late-night hours--there is always safety in numbers. Always call 911 immediately to report any suspicious persons or behavior. Please spread the word to your neighbors
NLCS parking restrictions and street closures
Chicago Cubs vs. New York Mets
National League Championship Series Schedule
Game 3: Tuesday, Oct. 20 at Wrigley Field
New York Mets @ Chicago Cubs at 7:00 pm (CT)
Game 4: Wednesday, Oct. 21 at Wrigley Field
New York Mets @ Chicago Cubs at 7:00 pm (CT)
Game 5: Thursday, Oct. 22 at Wrigley Field
New York Mets @ Chicago Cubs at 7:00 pm (CT)
Game 6: Satuday, Oct. 24
Chicago Cubs @ New York Mets at 3:00 pm (CT)
Game 7: Sunday, Oct. 25
Chicago Cubs @ New York Mets at 7:00 pm (CT)
National League Championship Series
Post Season Games at Wrigley Field
Tuesday 10/20, Wednesday 10/21, Thursday 10/22
10/20, 10/21, 10/22
Beginning at Noon on 10/20 through 4am on 10/23
*If the NLCS series comes to an end with game 4, the additional parking restrictions will be removed Thursday morning (October 22).
Clark - Belmont to Irving (Both Sides)
Sheffield-Belmont to Irving Park (Both Sides)
Addison-Halsted to Southport (Both Sides)
Racine-Belmont to Grace/Clark (Both Sides)
*Racine will be used as the Clark Street Alternative CTA Bus Route
*Parking Restrictions have been established by the Police Department to ensure Emergency Access, Pedestrian & Vehicular Safety and Crowd Control.
Sheffield (Addison to Waveland) Full Street Closure (Except Fire Lane)- Pedestrian access will remain open on Sheffield
Waveland (Sheffield to Clark) Full Street Closure (Except Fire Lane) ? Pedestrian access will remain open on Waveland
Limo and Taxi Information
In an effort to minimize the impact of traffic in the community around Wrigley Field and the 44th Ward, the Chicago Police Department & OEMC have established the following staging and pickup procedure for Taxis, Limousines, and Car Services:
Limousines and Car Services must stage along Irving Park Road. All pickups must occur on Irving Park Road between Clark and Seminary.
Taxi Loading / Pickup: Addison & Racine & Addison & Halsted
Remote Parking Lot
Parking is available at the remote lot, located at 3900 N. Rockwell, with a free shuttle to Wrigley Field. The Lot opens approximately three hours prior to each game. Remote Shuttle Buses will be staged on Addison west of Racine. Remote Shuttle service will run three hours before the game until two hours after the game.
What to Expect throughout the NLCS Play-Off
CTA Bus Staging: CTA Westbound Addison buses may stage between Clark and Racine on the North side of the street.
PACE Bus: Clark between Waveland & Grace
Media Staging: Addison south side Clark to Racine-west of Taco Bell
Streets & Sanitation support vehicles: Addison south side from Racine to Lakewood & Clark at Grace
Wire Baskets & Newspaper Boxes throughout the security perimeter will be removed throughout post season. Bolted Wire Baskets will have secured covers placed over the tops.
Expect Street Closures between Belmont and Irving Park / Halsted and Southport. At the discretion of the Chicago Police and OEMC Arterial Streets MAY be closed to ALL vehicular traffic beginning in the 7th Inning.
Please have Photo ID and Proof of Residence ready for presentation to any public safety offic
Greater Grand Crossing Man Charged in Town Hall Robberies
Free Flu Vaccine at Walgreens
Influenza (flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness. Serious outcomes of flu infection can result in hospitalization or death. Some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at high risk for serious flu complications. The best way to prevent the flu is by getting vaccinated each year. (Centers for Disease Control)
Flu season typically starts in the fall and peaks in January or February. Getting a flu shot is your best protection against the flu. If you have symptoms of flu and are worried about your illness contact your health care provider. Flu signs and symptoms usually include fever and respiratory symptoms, such as cough and runny nose, and possibly other symptoms, such as body aches, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. For more helpful advice and a national perspective on preparations for the 2013-2014 flu season, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as www.flu.gov.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in partnership with Walgreens has provided the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) with a limited number of vouchers for free seasonal influenza vaccines (flu shots) for Chicago residents. The vouchers are for Chicago residents who do not have insurance coverage for a flu shot and cannot afford to pay for a flu shot
Flu shot vouchers are valid in any Walgreens pharmacy located in the Chicago area through April 15, 2016.
The voucher will cover Walgreens cost of the flu shot and Walgreen's administration of the flu shot. There are no cost or fees to the voucher recipient. The vouchers are only valid for seasonal flu shots and are not redeemable for other medication, products, food, store credit or cash.
Children 10 - 18 years (with a parent/guardian) and adults can get a flu shot with these vouchers at a Walgreens pharmacy. Children 2 through 13 years of age (with a parent/guardian) can use these vouchers to get vaccinated at a Walgreens Take Care Clinic. Individuals may request a single voucher or multiple vouchers. Due to the limited supply, a maximum of 3 vouchers per request.
Since the peak of influenza activity usually occurs in January and February, it is not too late to get vaccinated. If you are interested in requesting a voucher(s) for a free flu shot, please provide the following information by clicking here.