CITY HALL — Drivers on Belmont Avenue, beware: The red-light camera at Belmont Avenue and Lake Shore Drive drew the most tickets for red-light violations in the first part of 2013.
The intersection has amassed 9,749 tickets so far, a few dozen more than the 9,712 amassed so far at last year's top earner, Cicero Avenue and Interstate 55, according to city data.
The red-light cameras at Cicero Avenue and I-55 led the city in tickets in 2012, with 19,805, according to an audit issued earlier this year by the city's Inspector General's Office.
Belmont Avenue and Lake Shore Drive placed second, with 16,273 tickets issued last year.
Other high-traffic intersections, mostly on the South Side, rounded out the top 10 red-light ticket locations in 2013:
3) Van Buren Street and Western Avenue: 7,245
4) Stony Island Avenue and East 89th Street: 6,953
5) Lafayette Avenue and West 87th Street: 6,200
6) Stony Island Avenue and East 76th Street: 5,639
7) Stony Island Avenue and East 95th Street: 4,407
8) Cicero and Archer avenues: 4,027
9) Roosevelt Road and Halsted Street: 3,921
10) Columbus Drive and Illinois Street: 3,870
According to Inspector General Joseph Ferguson's audit, the city's 190 red-light intersections issued 612,278 tickets last year, good for $61.2 million in revenue at $100 a pop.
Overall, however, the city took in $71.9 million from red-light tickets last year, counting tickets paid from previous years, along with those earning additional fines and collection costs.
The audit called into question whether the city's red-light cameras were stationed at the most-dangerous intersections, lending credence to those who suggest they're just a revenue stream for the city.
The city appeared to address those criticisms Tuesday by announcing a shutdown of 18 red-light cameras, including top earners at 89th and Stony Island Avenue, Clark Street and Cermak Road and Higgins Road and Harlem Avenue.
The rest of the top 25 for the first half of 2013:
11) Wentworth Avenue and Garfield Boulevard
12) Cermak Road and Clark Street
13) Hollywood Avenue and Sheridan Road
14) 75th and State streets
15) Broadway and Sheridan Road/Devon Avenue
16) Lawrence and Cicero avenues
17) Higgins Road and Harlem Avenue
18) Western and Foster avenues
19) Laramie Avenue and Madison Street
20) Cicero Avenue and Washington Boulevard
21) 79th and State streets
22) Pulaski Road and Peterson Avenue
23) Western Avenue and Marquette Road
24) Cortland Street and Ashland Avenue
25) 99th and Halsted streets