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CTA To Pull Plug On Western-To-Fullerton Leg Of No. 11 Lincoln Bus

By Patty Wetli | August 7, 2017 5:35pm | Updated on August 7, 2017 5:40pm
 CTA plans to pull the plug on the Western-to-Fullerton leg, again, as of Sept. 1.
CTA plans to pull the plug on the Western-to-Fullerton leg, again, as of Sept. 1.
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DNAinfo/Patty Wetli

LINCOLN SQUARE — The No. 11 Lincoln bus pilot has come to the end of the line.

The CTA plans to inform the transit agency's board Wednesday that as of Sept. 1 it's pulling the plug on a pilot of the Western-to-Fullerton leg of the route, which was axed in 2012 and revived in June 2016 on a trial basis.

"We made this decision after collecting and evaluating more than a year's worth of ridership data and other information," said CTA spokeswoman Tammy Chase.

"The demand for the route simply wasn't anywhere near what was needed to sustain a route of this kind, averaging about 500 riders per day compared with the target of 1,500," Chase said, adding that the pilot cost the agency nearly $1 million.

Though residents complained about the pilot's limited hours — no weekend or morning rush service — CTA maintained that Brown Line rail service and other bus routes offered riders numerous options.

Ald. Ameya Pawar (47th), a staunch supporter of the No. 11 pilot, said he was disappointed with CTA's decision and would have liked for the agency to have altered the pilot's hours in a last ditch effort to increase ridership.

"I think the board and President [Dorval] Carter heard us. But sometimes bureaucracy does what bureaucracy does," Pawar said.

Chase said the agency would "continue to keep an open dialogue" with Pawar and Ald. Michele Smith (43rd) regarding transit service.

Despite the route's demise, Pawar said he remained proud of the community's efforts, which got the CTA to agree to the pilot in the first place.

"We organized as a community and we convinced one of the biggest transit agencies in the country to change its mind," he said. "So community organizing works."

Weekday service will continue on the No. 11 pilot route, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday, until Sept. 1.