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Last Chance To Ride No. 11 Bus, Route Is Gone As Of Friday

By Patty Wetli | August 31, 2017 9:30am
 The long saga of the No. 11 Lincoln Bus route comes to an end on Friday.
The long saga of the No. 11 Lincoln Bus route comes to an end on Friday.
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DNAinfo/Patty Wetli

LINCOLN SQUARE — Riders have one last day to get on board the No. 11 Lincoln bus — as of Friday, it will be gone. Again.

For supporters, it's a disappointing end to a saga that began in 2012, when the Chicago Transit Authority axed the Western-to-Fullerton leg of the route, having deemed the No. 11 duplicative of Brown Line rail service.

Constant lobbying — by residents, chambers of commerce, and Ald. Ameya Pawar (47th) and Ald. Michele Smith (43rd) — for the return of the route paid off in 2016 when CTA announced it would revive the canceled leg on a trial basis.

Victory was fleeting, as ridership along the route never approached the target set by CTA to retain service.

A year into the trial, which was extended from its original six-month period, the transit agency announced it was pulling the plug on the No. 11. 

For those in need of an alternate public transit route, CTA is recommending the Brown Line and a number of east-west and north-south bus routes that stop near Lincoln Avenue: No. 9 Ashland, No. X9 Ashland Express, No. 49 Western, No. X49 Western Express, No. 50 Damen, No. 74 Fullerton, No. 76 Diversey, No. 77 Belmont, No. 78 Montrose, No. 80 Irving Park, No. 81 Lawrence and No. 152 Addison.

A timeline of the No. 11 Lincoln:

• December 2012 Lincoln Avenue Bus Supporters Plan to Attend CTA Meeting By the Busload

How to save the No. 11 bus route? Supporters plan to show up at a CTA board meeting ... by the busload.

• December 2012 Supporters of No. 11 Lincoln Bus Pack CTA Meeting

Residents pleaded with CTA board to reconsider eliminating a key segment of the No. 11 Lincoln route.

• July 2014 No. 11 Lincoln Bus Campaign Aims to Bring Back Route Axed by CTA

Pawar is launching a survey and deploying street teams to build a case for the route's return.

• August 2014 'Bring Back No. 11 Bus' Survey Nets 1,500 Responses

The survey on the elimination of the No. 11 Lincoln bus is available online and in paper form.

• November 2014 No. 11 Bus Supporters Set to Rally at Monday's CTA Budget Hearing

The fight over the No. 11 bus continues as supporters aim to turn out in force for CTA's budget hearing.

• November 2014 No. 11 Bus Supporters Tell CTA Board 'We're Not Going Away'

Fans of the No. 11 Lincoln bus packed the CTA's annual budget hearing to rally for the route's return.

• November 2014 Lincoln Park Residents, Businesses Push for Return of No. 11 Bus

Two years after the bus route was chopped, residents and businesses continue to push for its return.

• April 2015 North, South Siders Unite to Revive Lost CTA Bus Routes

Pawar said they're out to bring back the No. 11 Lincoln bus and the 31st Street line.

• November 2015 The No. 11 Bus On Lincoln Avenue Is Coming Back, CTA Announces

CTA President Dorval Carter restored the No. 11 Lincoln bus on a pilot basis.

• May 2016 No. 11 Lincoln Bus Comeback Set For June, CTA Board Expected To OK Plan

The No. 11 Lincoln Bus is set to start rolling again June 20, according to Pawar.

• May 2016 The No. 11 and 31 Buses Won't Run Until 10 A.M., Angering Commuters

Lack of rush hour service has supporters saying routes are doomed to fail.

• June 2016 No. 11 Route Returns To Cheers; Riders Urged To 'Get On The Bus'

A six-month pilot return of the No. 11 Lincoln Avenue bus kicks off.

• July 2016 Hop Aboard the No. 11 Bus For A Beer And Bar Tour Monday

"For the Love of the #11" will hit three bars along the route, from Lincoln Square to Lincoln Park.

• November 2016 No. 11 Lincoln Bus Defended At CTA Budget Hearing

Bus supporter Allan Mellis calls the revived route and hours of operation "indequate."

• December 2016 No. 11 Bus Gets 6-Month Extension, But CTA Says More Marketing Is Needed

It will cost about $385,000 to operate the extended route another six months, the CTA said.

• February 2017 No. 11 Bus Has A Valentine's Message For Riders: 'Be Mine'

A Valentine's campaign is asking riders to #lovethebus.

• April 2017 It's Hail Mary Time For No. 11 Bus; CTA Says Ridership Well Below Target

The year-long pilot for the No. 11 Lincoln bus has nearly reached its end.

• May 2017 The No. 1 Fan Of The No. 11 Bus Has 500 Reasons For CTA To Keep The Route

Robynne Wallace has boarded the bus at all times, in all directions, gathering comments from riders.

• June 2017 Reprieve For No. 11 Bus, Now Extended Through September: Then What?

The CTA extended the route's pilot through Sept. 1 while the transit agency debates the No. 11's future.

• August 2017 CTA To Pull Plug On Western-To-Fullerton Leg Of No. 11 Lincoln Bus

A pilot restoring service on the route did not attract enough riders and will end Sept. 1.