Cook County Releases Its First-Ever Transit Plan
Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle announced the completion of the County’s first-ever Transit Plan that was presented to the Board of Commissioners last week. Developed by the County’s Department of Transportation and Highways (DoTH), the Transit Plan priorities include improving the seamlessness of transit, increasing overall transit ridership and focusing on the needs of transit-reliant communities.
“The Cook County Transit Plan will help strengthen the County’s role in supporting agency partners and local governments as we work to increase the number of residents, workers and visitors taking public transportation,” said President Preckwinkle. “Cook County will continue to pursue strategies to upgrade and expand the system in ways that benefit under-resourced communities, promote equity and foster climate resiliency. Ensuring all residents have access to high-quality public transit options will make Cook County a better place to live.”
The Plan includes seven specific strategies to enhance the transit network including: more frequent transit service, service to new areas, fare integration, upgrading bus stops, better access to transit, increased bus service and faster travel times as well as accessibility improvements. Specific projects that achieve these strategies are currently taking shape through agency partner initiatives, DoTH-led efforts and other efforts funded through the Invest in Cook grant program.
“The completion of the Transit Plan is the latest example of the County following through on the vision outlined in Connecting Cook County, the County’s first Long Range Transportation Plan,” said DoTH Superintendent Jennifer “Sis” Killen. “Implementation of the Transit Plan will be closely coordinated with County’s recently published Bike Plan. Both plans identify and implement mobility options that broaden transportation options and help connect our communities and neighborhoods. While Cook County does not operate public transit service, this plan will help guide future funding, stakeholder engagement, policy support as well as planning and design assistance to help improve the landscape in which service is provided.”
Since 2017, the County has awarded more than $8 million in Invest in Cook grants to advance or complete 27 transit projects. The Transit Plan will continue the momentum gained from the Invest in Cook grant program to ensure regional transit is affordable, attractive, convenient, safe and gets people where they need to go.
For more information and to download the County’s Transit Plan, visit www.cookcountyil.gov/transitplan