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  • Pedestrian Activity in Chicagos Downtown

    prepared for Chicago Department of Transportation

    by

    TranSystems and

    TransInfo LLC

    December 2008

  • 2

    ABSTRACT................................................................................................................................... 5

    CHAPTER I. INTRODUCTION................................................................................................ 6

    CHAPTER II. DATA COLLECTION AND STUDY AREA ................................................... 7 LOOP ............................................................................................................................................ 7 DATA COLLECTION PERIOD ................................................................................................ 8 METHOD OF DATA COLLECTION........................................................................................ 8

    CHAPTER III. PEDESTRIAN-TRAFFIC COUNTS............................................................. 10

    THE LOOP................................................................................................................................ 10 THE BRIDGES ......................................................................................................................... 18 NORTH MICHIGAN AVENUE (NORTH OF THE RIVER) ...................................................... 22 STATE STREET....................................................................................................................... 31 PEDWAY.................................................................................................................................. 38 RIVER NORTH ........................................................................................................................ 39 WEST LOOP............................................................................................................................. 47 MICHIGAN AVENUE SOUTH OF CONGRESS ................................................................... 50

    CHAPTER IV. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS ............................................................. 51 MAJOR PEDESTRIAN-COUNT FINDINGS ......................................................................... 51 BIBLIOGRAPHY..................................................................................................................... 53

    APPENDIX A .............................................................................................................................. 54 REASONS WHY PEDESTRIAN TRAFFIC INCREASES AND DECREASES ........................................... 54 PLACES NOT COUNTED............................................................................................................... 55 CONSTRUCTION.......................................................................................................................... 55

  • 3

    LIST OF FIGURES

    1. 2007 Loop Weekday Pedestrian Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . .11 2. South Side of the Adams Street Bridge at Union Station. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . .12 3. North Side of Madison Street between Clark and Dearborn Streets . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . .13 4. East Side of Clark Street between Washington and Madison. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 5. East Side of State Street between Washington and Madison. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 6. East Side of North Michigan Avenue between Huron and Superior. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 7. 1999 and 2007 Aggregate Loop Counts by 15-minute Intervals. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 8. Ratio of Aggregate Loop 2007 Counts to the 1999 Counts by 15-minute Intervals. . . . 18 9. Aggregate Bridge Traffic Proportion of Daily Total 1999 and 2007 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 10. Comparison of Pedestrian Traffic on Chicago River Bridges, 2007. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 11. 1999/2007 North Michigan Avenue Weekday Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 12. Comparison of Weekday 1999 and 2007 Michigan Avenue Totals. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 13. 1999/2007 North Michigan Avenue Saturday Counts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 14. Comparison of Aggregate Michigan Avenue 2007 Weekday and Saturday Counts. . . . . 30 15. Growth in North Michigan Avenue Pedestrian Traffic, 1986 to 2007. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 16. 2007 State Street Weekday Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 17. 2007 State Street Saturday Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 18. Comparison of 1999 and 2007 Saturday Totals. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 19. Proportion of the Nine-hour Saturday Total During each 15-minute Period. . . . . . . . . . . 36 20. Comparison of Aggregate State Street 2007 Weekdays and Saturdays . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 21. 2007 Pedway Weekday Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 22. River North and Streeterville Weekday Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40 23. 1999 and 2007 Counts Summer for 58 Sites Counted in Both Years. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 24. Ratio of 2007 and 1999 Data by 15-minute Intervals. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 25. River North Corner Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44 26. Comparison of 1999 and 2007 Corner Counts in River North. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45 27. 1999 / 2007 River North PM Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 28. Comparison of 1999 and 2007 Afternoon/Evening Counts in River North. . . . . . . . . . . 47 29. West Loop Pedestrian Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48 30. South Michigan Avenue Weekday Counts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 A.1 Loop Construction Zones. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 A.2 River North Construction Zones. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59 A.3 Block Face Identification Numbers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 A.4 River North Block Identification Numbers. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61

  • 4

    LIST OF TABLES

    1. Count Sites in the 2007 Study. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7 2. Changes in the Loop Pedestrian Traffic by Five Time Periods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .16 3. Weekday Pedestrian Traffic Across the Chicago River . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .19 4. Weekday Pedestrian Traffic Across the South Branch of the Chicago River. . . . . . . . . . . . .20 5. Weekday Pedestrian Counts on North Michigan Avenue 1986 to 2007 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .26 6. Saturday Pedestrian Counts on North Michigan Avenue 1986 to 2007. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29 7. Effects of Heavy Rain and Sunny Weather on Pedway Traffic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .38

    LIST OF PHOTOGRAPHS

    1. Data-collection Supplies and Equipment. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 2. Park in Front of 311 South Wacker during lunch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 3. Pedestrian Traffic on the north side of the Madison Street Bridge. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 4. Street Entertainment and Pedestrian Traffic on Michigan Avenue. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .23 5. Scaffolding on State Street. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32 6. Evening Traffic on State Street. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 7. Pedestrians Clustering in Front of Union Station. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49 8. Sidewalks between Ogilvie and Union Stations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49

    A.1 Pedestrians in an alley located in the Loop. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 A.2 Platooning on the South Side of Madison Street between State and Dearborn Streets . .56

  • 5

    ABSTRACT

    This report summarizes a study of pedestrian traffic in downtown Chicago as shown on the map below. It includes information on over three million pedestrians counted during the summer of 2007. The study is conducted to identify patterns of pedestrian activity in downtown Chicago and how they have changed since the last study in 1999.

    Map of Study Area

    The study finds that there are substantial increases in pedestrian traffic in River North and Streeterville, on North Michigan Avenue on Saturdays and on State Street on Saturdays. Although much of State Street was under construction, the pedestrian traffic was higher this summer than in 1999. Pedestrian traffic may also be higher than in 1999 in the West and South Loop but the lack of previous counts precludes that conclusion. South Michigan Avenue (south of Congress Parkway) pedestrian counts also increased. More pedestrians were counted in the morning and evening peak periods than in 1999. This is when people enter and leave Loop. There were fewer pedestrians walking during lunch and mid-day period, resulting in a l

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