Wood Street bike lane update ahead

Plans are in motion to repave Wood Street, but with few details about separate bicycle lanes.

Wheels are turning on Wood Street's proposed bicycle lanes. The Chicago Department of Transportation has not presented a plan and EVA has been unable to connect with CDOT, but Ald. Daniel La Spata (1st Ward) expects details to emerge in the next month.

"On the Wood Street bike lane, please know that CDOT continues to have this project under review," La Spata wrote EVA via email. "All of the feedback we receive from residents continues to be passed on. Whenever CDOT comes back to us with design alternatives, we will make sure to notify the public."

La Spata asked for time to present to EVA members at the June meeeting and expects by then to "have clarity" on the project.

One group of neighbors are circulating fliers for an online petition that opposes 1st Ward bike lane projects, as well as a permanent bus/bike lane between Ashland and Western avenues that could claim parking spaces.

La Spata has pledged up to $325,000 in city "menu money" to install protected bike lanes on either side of Wood Street when it is repaved. EVA board members have objected to limited outreach and participation in La Spata's "participatory budgeting" process.

"I think there has been more communication between us and him in the last two months than we've had in the previous two years unless it's specifically a zoning item," board member Neal McKnight told members at EVA's May 2 meeeting.

Stephanie Flinchbaugh, West Town Branch Library manager, addresses East Village Association members at Roots Pizza.

West Town library turns page to summer

Stephanie Flinchbaugh opened the May 2 meeting with a preview of West Town Branch Library events and the summer City of Stories program.

The Art Institute of Chicago, Hull House and the American Writers Museum will participate in the summer reading series. Flinchbaugh plans CPR training and hybrid in-person and online book club discussions. Online sessions online include the young adult "Things I Wish I Knew" workshops, including a May 25 gardening session. The branch also will make city supplies of naloxone inhalers available for community groups to address opioid overdose cases.

Discussion of Chicago's ward remap is covered in a separate post.

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