Freight train traffic: Suburban leaders seek help from Obama in...

Several suburban state legislators and mayors called on President Barack Obama Wednesday to fill a vacancy on a federal regulatory board with someone sympathetic to their opposition to more freight trains in their communities. Full Story
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Manny

Chicago, IL

#1 May 13, 2009
Sad...give it up people. The CN has taken over the EJ&E route and the sky hasn't fallen.
tomj

United States

#2 May 14, 2009
Oh, yes, they spoke up--very shrilly. And they were listened to. But, in weighing the overall good of the merger, officials decided to permit the deal to happen. Perhaps if they had presented a more reasoned approach rather than demonizing the railroad and stating their world would come to an end, theh might have done better. Many, many communities in this area have learned to live with far more trains than will run on the CN/EJ&E. After listening to their ranting, I have no sympathy for these people.

Since: Sep 08

Elkhart, IN

#3 May 14, 2009
Hasn't Obama been touting expanded commuter rail service with Chicago as the hub? If that is the case, the CN bypass is neccesary to free up track space into/out of downtown Chicago, so they may be fighting an uphill battle.
Jim

United States

#4 May 14, 2009
Just like when people bitched about the air force base that is now the glen. First the military aircraft were too loud, now that the airspace is no longer MOA commercial air traffic can go through more frequently and louder. Careful what you wish for. Try to shut this down and see what happens. More trucks, more interchanges. Quit thinking your town is some sort of untouchable holy land and be realistic.
Scarzo

Indianapolis, IN

#5 May 14, 2009
This is a classic case of a bunch of NIMBYs fighting something that actually benefits the greater good of the region--something that has already been well taken care of, and put to bed, mind you.
Theirs is a cause worth ignoring, Mr. President.
Bob - Wheeling

Vernon Hills, IL

#6 May 14, 2009
It is simply their turn to hear the train horns. The rest did their share, now it is your turn.

Fact of Life when living around train tracks.
reality

Glen Ellyn, IL

#7 May 14, 2009
"The board in December approved the Canadian National Railway's acquisition of the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern line through their suburbs. Canadian National purchased the line to divert freight traffic around Chicago's congested rail corridor."

Aside from the NIMBYs who complain this diversion of freight around Chicago is the RIGHT thing to do. And, yes I live very near the EJE and in fact had to wait for it this morning. The REALITY is that freight trains are an ESSENTIAL part of a national economy. We'll all regret the day their are no freight trains because it'll mean we are in a depression!

Lets stop the NIMBY whinning!
Chris R

Pleasanton, CA

#8 May 14, 2009
For all of you people that seem to want to demonize us whiners, would you like to sit in 30 minutes of additional traffic congestion thanks to increased railroad traffic through already heavily traffic congested areas of Lake County? The trains are ridiculously long, no train should take 10 minutes to pass. Traffic was already bad before the increased traffic, and this just made it worse. Is it really for the good? There had to have been a better compromise
BDD

Chicago, IL

#9 May 14, 2009
Help us Barry O.! We built our homes near the rail tracks. We moved into homesnear the rail tracks. PLEASE STOP THE TRAINS!

Please don't give up the fight or else I will have to move next to an airport so that I can complain some more.
PJS

Highland Park, IL

#10 May 14, 2009
Wayne_IL wrote:
Hasn't Obama been touting expanded commuter rail service with Chicago as the hub? If that is the case, the CN bypass is neccesary to free up track space into/out of downtown Chicago, so they may be fighting an uphill battle.
Well said. I doubt anyone has made this connection yet...including the media.
Red Blooded American

Lisle, IL

#11 May 14, 2009
Do you really think they care about you and your fight against the railroad? Come on, Obama is too busy screwing the country up to bother with you.
Lettemeatcake

Elgin, IL

#12 May 14, 2009
QUOTE who="Chris R"
For all of you people that seem to want to demonize us whiners, would you like to sit in 30 minutes of additional traffic congestion thanks to increased railroad traffic through already heavily traffic congested areas of Lake County?"
Pssst. The rest of us have been waiting on trains for years. YEARS. Maybe be we can teach you some games to play while watching 'em roll by. I know you've heard this before and think those of us in the south and near west burbs are lying, but it really is true. Trains are a part of life in Illinois. Does it suck waiting? Yeah, but does it suck less to wait and carry on like a jilted sixth grader? No, it actually sucks just as much while convincing a whole lot of people that you are an elitist windbag.
"The trains are ridiculously long, no train should take 10 minutes to pass."
Again, damn you, commerce, and your boundless excesses!
"Traffic was already bad before the increased traffic, and this just made it worse. Is it really for the good? There had to have been a better compromise."
Seriously, maybe communities will now start thinking about infrastructure BEFORE approving ridiculous subdivisions, town home developments and strip malls. Nah, that would slow down growth. Besides if you build better roads first, they get tagged as roads to nowhere.
Chris, I don't take this personally, please. But this has to do with a failure of leadership, effective planning, and a realistic vision, not long trains.
Joe Citizen

San Diego, CA

#13 May 14, 2009
reality wrote:
,snip> The REALITY is that freight trains are an ESSENTIAL part of a national economy. We'll all regret the day their are no freight trains because it'll mean we are in a depression!
Chicago made its start as a transportation hub. Gallon for gallon, trains are one of the cheapest ways to ship freight, and will be at the center of national revitalization. This country went through a boom when the rails were being built, so lets capture that again as we rebuild our infrastructure.
VacationVisitor

Tulsa, OK

#14 May 14, 2009
Run all the trains you want to, CN. I can get more pictures & see more trains when I come on vacation. I don't get a lot of CN where i live.
Michael

Skokie, IL

#15 May 14, 2009
Red Blooded American wrote:
Do you really think they care about you and your fight against the railroad? Come on, Obama is too busy screwing the country up to bother with you.
We'll see much screwing-up this man does when you stand in line for a construction or other job this man creates with his plan. We all need to keep the faith, and stay on course.
Third party hope

United States

#16 May 14, 2009
The problem is not the trains. The problem is that local concerns about safety are not taken into account. The tracks are considered railroad property but intersect public right of ways. These "private lands" can also be located near residential homes and schools where they can be many young children. Not enough planning is going into making the situations around railroad tracks as safe as possible. In the past winter how many trains derailed in Chicago? How much public money was spent cleaning up the mess? I am all for freight moving by trains but commen sense must go into the planning.
Karl Marx-I oughtta know

Oak Park, IL

#17 May 14, 2009
Red Blooded American wrote:
Do you really think they care about you and your fight against the railroad? Come on, Obama is too busy screwing the country up to bother with you.
You know, I wouldn't speak too quickly. Obama dosen't seem to have anything really important to do.(The econmony?- that's Bushes fault, security of the country?- we'll just throw cash that we don't have at terrorists, business leaving the country?- raise the taxes on what's left. ect. ect.)

If people point out real problems we'll just divert attention to "torture" or perhaps some railway issues around Chicago.
Michael

Skokie, IL

#18 May 14, 2009
Chris R wrote:
For all of you people that seem to want to demonize us whiners, would you like to sit in 30 minutes of additional traffic congestion thanks to increased railroad traffic through already heavily traffic congested areas of Lake County? The trains are ridiculously long, no train should take 10 minutes to pass. Traffic was already bad before the increased traffic, and this just made it worse. Is it really for the good? There had to have been a better compromise
Hey Chris, this is what you get for living in the sticks, SUCK-IT-UP , and shut-up this is the price you pay.
Bruce

Villa Park, IL

#19 May 14, 2009
Comment board filled with haters and sociopaths.
Monkey See

United States

#20 May 14, 2009
The merger was needed, however, so were upgrades before CN diverged more freight onto the line. Very few, if any, of the promises CN made to the suburbs have been enacted upon.

At the same time, the suburbs should be in high gear to create projects that lead towards grade separation. With enough effort, they may be able to create a shovel-ready project and have it funded with stimulus money.

When all is said and done, though, everyone needs to remember that the biggest cause of traffic congestion will always be traffic itself. I live in the city of Chicago and I commute 10 miles to work with no at-grade rail crossing, but it still takes me an hour to make the trip.

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