Monday, August 22, 2016

August General Meeting

All are welcome to attend Bridgeport Alliance's next general meeting.

Where: Community Hall, First Trinity, 31st St., Bridgeport
When: Aug. 25, 7pm

We hope to see you there!

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Coming Attraction: A 31st St. Bus Movie!


Bridgeport Alliance is pleased to announce that it's working with a local filmmaker to produce a short film about its involvement with the campaign for a 31st St. bus. 

And we need photographs and video!

Do you have any images of the various actions BA has done over the years for the bus?
That includes CTA board meetings, our trip to Dan Lipinski's house, the many meetings with aldermen, or our two bike-n-rolls! 

How about historical photos of yourself on or near the bus before it was cancelled? 

If the pics are on Facebook, tag Bridgeport Alliance. If they're on your phone or in your camera, e-mail them to info@bridgeportalliance.org. Please tell us your full name as well as the names of the people in the image(s), the location, and the year (if you know them).

Monday, July 25, 2016

July General Meeting


The back of your neck may be gettin' dirt and gritty, but social justice ought to cool you down.
Join us for July's general meeting at 7pm in the Community Hall of First Trinity on 31st St.  July 28th.  See you there!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

31st Street Bus Scrapbook

Bridgeport Alliance made the news last week when we turned out at a Chicago Transit Authority meeting to demand better bus coverage.  Curious?  You've come to the right blog.  We got coverage in a number of important news outlets.  Check out CBS Chicago here, the Chicago Tribune here, and the Chicago Sun-Times here.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

CTA: Will you help Bridgeport?


Diana.
 The folks at First Lutheran Church of the Trinity in Bridgeport think the 31st St. Bus is a great idea.  In fact, they want more of it.  More hours, a longer route, and especially access to the beach. 
Folks remember this bus from way back.  Diana, in fact, used to take it when she was a lifeguard at the 31st St. Beach.  Now, she says, “I wish it came on the weekends.  I wish it ran for the summer months, for the kids.”  The proposed route provides only weekday service and will likely run from September to February. 
Eva, who was visiting the weekly clothing and food pantry at the church, thinks the bus would be great for the economy of Bridgeportand beyond. ““I’m lucky, I live on 35th . . . , but sometimes I happen to be over here [because of] the park or the store. . . . The college kids would probably need it to go from the college to the store. Or to go to Midway [via the Orange Line].”
Eva and daughter Anjeli.
The bus might be more help to the community without its current proposed hours, however, which stretch from 10am to 7pm.  Linda, another Bridgeporter who remembers the old route, says, “I remember, a long time ago, they used to have it.  I used to catch it all the time. . . . When I was, like, 16, 17 years old.  I used to work for the Jewel on the corner here [of Halsted and 31st].”  But could today’s teenager working at Cermak produce or Walgreen’s fit a busy work/school schedule into these nine awkwardly timed hours of bus service?
But the really resounding desire, on this sticky day in July, is for an extended route that goes all the way to the 31st St. Beach.  All three women agree on the biggest failure of the route. Says Linda, “Summer, winter, sometimes people just want to go to the lake.  Instead of walking. . . . Some elderly people can’t drive, you know? . . . It’s hard for the elderly people.  It’s hard for them.  It would be nice for them to have a bus to ride.” 
Linda.
But perhaps Linda sums it up best: “They should start thinking more within the community, what the people really need.”
Chicago Transit Authority, will you help Bridgeport get what it needs?

Want to get involved in the campaign for better public transportation in Bridgeport?  Here's what you can do:
  • Attend a Bridgeport Alliance general meeting on last Thursdays at 7pm at First Trinity's Community Hall.
  • Call 11th Ward Patrick Daley Thompson at (773) 254-667.
  • Or just e-mail Bridgeport Alliance at BridgeportAlliance@gmail.com!

    Article by Theresa Rothschadl, photographs by Brendan Brown. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Press Release - Bridgeport, Chinatown Community Groups Continue to Push for 31st Street Bus, Address CTA Board

**FOR IMMEDIATE PRESS RELEASE**
June 28, 7:30AM


Monday evening, Jun 27, members of Bridgeport Alliance and Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community met with 11th Ward Alderman Patrick Daley Thompson, requesting that he sign on to a letter addressed to Dorval Carter, president of the Chicago Transit Authority, and the CTA Board.

The letter [attached] expresses gratitude that the years of work community groups put into lobbying for the restored route paid off, but disappointment that the six month pilot route (first expected to be a 12 month pilot) is lacking in morning commute hours, evening access, and access to the beach, leaving stranded seniors, students, and other active and potentially active community members.  

Upon interview, emphasizing the need for a full bus route, Debbie Liu, Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community, noted “31st St has changed in the two decades since the original CTA bus #31 has been axed. The demographics of the neighborhoods have changed and more Asian Americans who often are first generation immigrants and may be low-income (and seniors!) have settled in the area. Additionally, there is a trend of people are choosing not to own cars, creating a need for good, reliable public transportation options. The current ‘approved’ bus route is inadequate and will not serve the morning rush hour, the late nights, the weekends and is falling short of our expectations as it does not go to Museum Campus nor Mercy Hospital. We have hopes that we can come to a consensus with elected officials and city agencies to create a bus route and schedule that works for everyone.”

Esau Chavez, an IIT student, noted “I need the 31st street bus route to be better serviced as a resident of the southwest side to better connect me with my university; and as a student to open up shopping and leisure opportunities along the 31st street corridor.”

Benjamin Huey, Bridgeport Alliance member, and Rev. Tom Gaulke, pastor at First Trinity Lutheran Church noted that with the current proposal, people can still not get to church, to meditation, to bible study, or to morning worship services, as the route will not begin until 10AM. 

Quade Gallagher, Co-Chair of Bridgeport Alliance along with Suzanne Goebel, expressed that "the bus is essential for folks looking to move around the neighborhood easily and safely, to get to work, to get to essential services and public amenities. Bridgeport Alliance has made this very clear to Alderman Thompson and we look forward to his continued to support of our campaign and our community."

State Representative elect, Theresa Mah, signed onto the letter earlier this week, and the group is hopeful the the Alderman will sign on this afternoon, after review. 

"I'm excited about working with the Alderman to ensure the needs of the community are met, and we get a bus that will get me and my neighbors to work, play, the beach, hospitals,” said Brian Cerullo, BA member, and Bridgeport resident and enthusiast. 

The group plans to mail the letter to President Carter and the CTA, and to deliver it person, with their officials, at the next board meeting, July 13, 10AM, 567 W. Lake St.