Saturday, August 22, 2015
Transit in Transit
Here I go on transit systems again. Chicago has an interesting system, known as the "L" for elevated trains. It runs from both airports into the city. Much of the system is above ground, there are a couple of lines that run underground when in the downtown area. The cars are very utilitarian inside, simple seats, hard rubber floors. The cars hose out easily, handy in Chicago winters. The top of some of the windows open (a complaint about the DC system when the air conditioning is not working is that the windows are all sealed.)
Chicago uses a flat fee fare system. From O'Hare into the city it is about $5, other rides, including back to the airport are $2.25. You pay when you enter the system, it does not matter how far or how long you ride, one price covers it. I like that. This past year they changed to a new payment system that uses credit cards with near field communication chips. Any card with that technology will work, if you don't have one, the vending machines in the stations dispense them. All in all, it is a good system and a good way to see major parts of the city.