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CTA President Richard Rodriguez


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#1 CURRENTZ_09

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 01:40 PM

First and for most i have the up most respect for anybody willing to become President of any transit system across America in these economic times as we all strive to continue to pay bills, put food on the table and balance our living expenses. So i give an extended round of applause to Richard Rodriguez for continuing to balance out the CTA resources based on a tight budget that goes to the State, then to RTA to Mr. Rodriguez desk to make important transit decisions that affects 1.7 million riders on an average weekday. Joining the CTA on March 11th 2009, he didn't even have a honeymoon period before handling one of the biggest service cuts that the CTA has been threatin with since 2007's CTA "DOOMSDAY". A Chicago native himself, he is serving the community the best way possible through public service. He is one of CTA's recent presidents that has made his face known through out the community as the face of the CTA, not may transitd agency's presidents do that. He was very aware of the budget short falls of the 2010 service cuts and made the cuts almost impossible to notice (Yes, 9 express buses don't exsist anymore but to keep and increase local serivce on those 9 local routes is a challenge it's self). But to be able to keep service levels to a respectable state, keeping intact and improving the rail system and also introducing new technologies into the CTA system with a tight budget is an accomplishment. Going ahead and contnuing to introduce the 5000-series (Rodriguez if u read this please explain why this fleet was named the 5000-series instead of the 3500-series) couldn't hurt either. Also enhancing the CTA Connections not only to local cable stations but also on Youtube and bring in a new and improved host (Omar Barragan) and programing schedule (Rodriguez did u have a part in this) couldn't have been better for the CTA. More access to Bus and Rail timetables could help, not everyone has a access to the web at home and printed detailing of this information can be resourceful if you don't have web-enabled celluar serivce. Bus & Train Tracker was the right direction in the approach to continuing to giving CTA commuters and Chicago visitors a touch of world-class expreience into making the CTA more interactive within the community. Some may bash Mr. Rodriquez, but i say in 2 years in office (March 11), you have did a wonderful job of keeping the CTA in a good level of service and can't wait to see what exciting projects you have in store.

To learn more about Richard L. Rodriguez click on the link posted
http://www.transitch...?ArticleId=2301

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#2 Busjack

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 02:24 PM

Are you his press agent?

As far as I can tell, he was sent in to do what Daley told him to.

#3 CURRENTZ_09

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 03:00 PM

Are you his press agent?

As far as I can tell, he was sent in to do what Daley told him to.



Well you already know what daley wanted "to try to make Chicago a World Class City". The things Rodriguez is doing now will have good impacts in the future and no i am not his press agent...........CTA if u every need a 24 yr old "kid" to work in operations marketing or anything besides cleaning im ya man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

#4 CTA5750

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 07:04 PM

Personally I dont think R.Rod should be in that position. He has no experience running a transit system. They need someone at the top who knows the transit industry, possess the knowledge of what it needs and knows how to run it! Mr Rodriguez has no experience in this field. If the CTA had a transit professional at the top, I know we would see a much better run transit system despite the hard times we live in. Better decisions I know could be made. CTA seems to be going backwards while most other transit systems around the country seem to be moving forward. A real transit pro could reverse this! I personally dont like the direction CTA is heading.

#5 See Tea Eh

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 07:48 PM

Personally I dont think R. Rodriguez should have that position. He has no experience running transit. they need someone at the top CTA post who knows the transit industry, knows what it needs and knows how to run it! Mr Rodriguez has no experience in this field. If the CTA had a transit professional at the top, I know we would see a well run transit system despite the hard times we live in. Better decisions I know could be made. CTA seems to be going backwards while most other transit systems around the country seem to be moving forward. A real transit pro could reverse this! I personally dont like the direction CTA is heading.


I will second that. As a former CTA employee (not laid off, I left for a better gig elsewhere), I can say from experience that employee morale took a nosedive after Rodriguez took over. Say what you want about Huberman (who also had no experience in transit), when Rodriguez took over, the whole push to improve service reliability simply vanished. It was no longer about how service could get better, but rather how CTA could avoid pissing off the aldermen. The unwritten but plainly obvious rule was "don't make waves until the Olympics announcement."

When he took over, suddenly everybody with decades of experience under their belt took their pension and left. RRod wouldn't even listen to the company's Chief Operating Officer, who knew the system (bus and rail) inside and out. Now look at the COO: Peter Ousley, a guy who had never worked in transit in his life before coming to CTA from City Hall to serve as RRod's Chief of Staff. Is that the guy you want making key decisions when the system falls apart due to some equipment or infrastructure malfunction? Is that the guy you want in charge when the union starts to scream about the contract and you need someone at CTA who actually knows and understands the contract to work out a compromise? Is that the guy you want telling all the operations managers and general managers what to do?

Throughout the company, he has been stashing city hall political hacks in cushy jobs (remember Volpe, the mayor's former chief of staff who orchestrated that disastrous parking meter deal?), replacing people with experience (sometimes even firing them).

I honestly doubt Rodriguez gives rodent's excrement about the numbering scheme of the new rail cars, or who hosts CTA's PR video.

Rodriguez didn't make any tough decisions regarding the 2010 cuts. All he had to do was stand there and look pretty (and I use that in a very figurative sense), while the staff at the bottom labored over how to make the cuts as painless to the public as possible.

RRod is not a transit man. When he finds a convenient out, he'll take it, and you'll never see him on a CTA vehicle again.

#6 Busjack

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 07:38 AM

...

I honestly doubt Rodriguez gives rodent's excrement about the numbering scheme of the new rail cars, or who hosts CTA's PR video.

Rodriguez didn't make any tough decisions regarding the 2010 cuts. All he had to do was stand there and look pretty (and I use that in a very figurative sense), while the staff at the bottom labored over how to make the cuts as painless to the public as possible.

RRod is not a transit man. When he finds a convenient out, he'll take it, and you'll never see him on a CTA vehicle again.


I don't think anyone gives any care about numbering, other than someone who runs the CTA Asset Control computer. The real issue is that he apparently doesn't give a care about passenger input about the cars, saying, for instance, that's that about the seating arrangement (as cited here). At least Huberman had asked for permission to investigate something that looked like this century instead of 1976.

As far as the cutbacks, that's what I meant that he was sent in to do what Daley said. Daley sent out the message to his troops in late 2009 to get givebacks or do layoffs. The library and CTA unions wouldn't agree to the givebacks, so they got the layoffs.

The last paragraph gets to the heart of the matter. I thought a year ago that this was it for Daley, because he was left to shuffling his functionaries. At least Huberman got out of CPS. It looks as though Rodriguez can't find another job. However, with the report, including on the home page, that Emanuel's transit transition team is weak, I don't expect anything much better.

The real problem is that the original poster is not old enough to remember when CTA was run by real transit professionals, like Krambles, or even CTA Board Members who took their responsibility seriously, like Dement and Pikarsky.

#7 BusHunter

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 12:48 PM

Personally, I kind of liked Kruezi myself. (although I may be the only person to say this.) During his reign, many bus routes were expanded and new routes begun. When the state wouldn't give adequate funding, he went boldly to Springfield to change things. His famous line "we have to change the way transit is funded in this state" showed he was intent on getting more funding for CTA. He actually got Springfield to send up more money. He seemed to have a powerful influence, maybe because of his ties to Daley. Although in the end this may have contributed to his downfall. He did seem to be a President that got things done. He will always be judged on the negatives, block 37 and other things, but if we don't progress forward we just stand still. The crime is half doing a project and not finishing it. Then it is a total loss. Huberman, has been credited by many bus purchases that were started by Kruezi. He also went to the state with less success than Kruezi and eventually the state won over. Over time we became faced with a crisis, and during Rodriquez's reign we had near record service cuts. With higher gas prices looming on the horizon, that will lead to less sales tax revenue which may lead to more cuts/fare increase all at a time when ridership may increase due to the rising gas prices. As far as Bustracker, on the corner or at the rail station it only benefits those with a hand held device or cell phone. What is missing is a way to track buses in real time maybe at a kiosk at a rail station. Texting to find the next bus doesn't help either, if the bus is late, it will just tell you it is "due". There no way to tell when it is coming. Basically, if you have a copy of the schedule, you are doing just as well as texting. Things need to go to the next level, like LA Metro is doing with the tracking ability being brought to the transit tv inside buses. Then they would have a perfect tracking system for buses.

#8 Busjack

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 02:01 PM

Personally, I kind of liked Kruezi myself. (although I may be the only person to say this.)


Not the only person, but it certainly is undeserved.

As far as adequate funding, I have said from the first days of "Ask Carole" that "there is no funding without taxation." The taxes were raised in 2008, but not in the way that Carole and Frank championed (i.e. the suburbs should pay for all the benefits CTA provides them), but by imposing a Real Estate Transfer Tax within the city, which was arguable at the time, but certainly did not work once the real estate market crashed later in 2008. RTA sales taxes also went up throughout the 6 county area, but the .25 point increase regionwide went about 58% to Metra and Pace.

Also, it was widely reported that Madigan would not push the 2008 RTA bill until Daley got rid of Kruesi.

I've chronicled many of the costly errors in the Kruesi administration, including the NABIs, Block 37, underestimating costs on the Brown Line, and bidding out rail cars on an obsolete specification, resulting in their estimated delivery about 5 years late.

Apparently, Huberman found a lot of management deficiencies that needed to be cleaned up. However, before we praise Huberman, apparently he left behind trouble found after he moved on; in the 911 center, a contracting scandal; at CTA, the later disclosed decision to take NABIs off the street and apparently covering up the reason for getting the DE60LFs (I hope I apologized to the person who had tipped this off); and more recent criticism by the interim schools people about how he handled CPS in the about 17 months he was there.

I could pile on on how the three most recent "Presidents" of CTA have blown taxpayer money, but there really is no point to do so to this audience.

#9 CURRENTZ_09

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Posted 26 March 2011 - 12:58 PM

Ok, i must agree with some vaild points, but this is what i am viewing so far as a person looking inside out. I mean u say that he wants to look pretty, but u know his face right? You claim that service is not what it used to be, well didnt service cuts arrive feburary 7th 2010 and then the cuts wasn't even that bad (try losing up to 6-8 routes a year for 9 years straight then talk about the quality of service). I mean as far as experience, transit presidents as of recent (think of Ford and their president who ran an airplane company with no automobile experience) don't have transit experience but they do have the business savvy to keep a business running smoothly without affect in passengers wallets (once again, CTA didnt have any transit cuts or fare increases in 2011.......SHAME!!!!!!!!!! on the people that complain). Then some of the responses i heard was about past presidents. Ok i respect what you are saying about their legacy, but that's just it, their legacy, we are talking about the present here. Yes, they may did things in the past that may have become impactful today, but lets continue to support Richard and what he's doing now to say some money in your wallet. Other responses say Rodriguez didn't listen to passenger complaints about the bowling alley seating in the 5000-series, in the world today you have to be better than the rest and with these new rail cars also comes along with the future. These cars are breaking away from "OLD & SAFE CHICAGO" and going with "NEW & GROUNDBREAKING CHICAGO". I mean if these rail cars would have came 5 years ago, the would have looked and operated exactly like the 3200 & 2600 series rail cars, not a step in the right direction. By going back, making these cars AC instead of DC (AC power regenerates power from the 3rd rail back to the trains, DC power generated power from the 3rd rail and then releases power not used when a train stops at a station as steam (thats the reason why you may be wondering why CTA subway stations are always hot like an old factory) it represents a new line of rail cars that is evironmentaly friendly, it breaks away from OLD Chicago standards and it only makes Chicago one step closer into becoming a world class city.

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#10 See Tea Eh

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Posted 26 March 2011 - 03:03 PM

He did seem to be a President that got things done. He will always be judged on the negatives, block 37 and other things, but if we don't progress forward we just stand still. The crime is half doing a project and not finishing it. Then it is a total loss. Huberman, has been credited by many bus purchases that were started by Kruezi. He also went to the state with less success than Kruezi and eventually the state won over.


(For the record, his name is Kruesi, not Kruezi)

For one, I don't see anyone "crediting" Huberman for buses ordered when Kruesi was president. Second, I recall at the time that the unofficial, between-the-lines reason Kruesi stepped down and Huberman took over was because Frank had ticked off so many people in Springfield that it was pretty much impossible for him to get anything. I don't think Kruesi had more success than Huberman in that regard.

As for doing a project halfway and not finishing, that's not the real crime. The real crime is starting to build the project without any plan whatsoever on what it was you were going to build, how you were going to operate it, and how you were going to pay for it.

If CTA were able to have finished the block 37 station, then what? You'd have less reliable, less frequent Blue Line service today, and an "Airport Local" doing otherwise the exact same thing the Blue Line would have done (only worse). There never was a serious plan on how to run the service. You'd think that in the several years they were building/paying for the thing, they would have figured out how it was going to operate.

Apparently not.

Over time we became faced with a crisis, and during Rodriquez's reign we had near record service cuts. With higher gas prices looming on the horizon, that will lead to less sales tax revenue which may lead to more cuts/fare increase all at a time when ridership may increase due to the rising gas prices. As far as Bustracker, on the corner or at the rail station it only benefits those with a hand held device or cell phone. What is missing is a way to track buses in real time maybe at a kiosk at a rail station. Texting to find the next bus doesn't help either, if the bus is late, it will just tell you it is "due". There no way to tell when it is coming. Basically, if you have a copy of the schedule, you are doing just as well as texting. Things need to go to the next level, like LA Metro is doing with the tracking ability being brought to the transit tv inside buses. Then they would have a perfect tracking system for buses.


Rodrugiez didn't cause the service cuts (nor, as some believe, did he really have all that much to do with planning their implementation). The trend of rising gas prices, increasing ridership and reduced funding is something that every large transit system in the country is facing. It's not limited to CTA.

Implementing bus tracker kiosks at every stop would be insanely expensive. Nonetheless, a few locations have had them added (I forget exactly which rail stations, I think 47th Red is one, plus the stop outside of 567 W Lake has one in the window of HQ if you're waiting for the #56).

The Transit TV stuff is privately funded advertising, and the longer CTA can avoid that garbage, the better as far as I'm concerned. We don't need loud, obnoxious TV commercials blasting in our ears every waking moment of the day.

I'll admit that I do have a smart phone, so I can use the mobile website. I've had about a 50% success rate at getting the text message thing to actually send me a text before the bus I was waiting for actually shows up. Nonetheless, when it does work, it is considerably better than a paper schedule. BusTracker will only tell you the bus is "due" if it is at a point within about two minutes running time from your stop. If the bus gets delayed in the mean time, no computer can really predict when it will eventually show up. Also, unless the bus has to turn a corner, if you see "due" on bus tracker then you can generally see the bus coming down the street, so at that point you can put the gadget away.

Ok, i must agree with some vaild points, but this is what i am viewing so far as a person looking inside out. I mean u say that he wants to look pretty, but u know his face right? You claim that service is not what it used to be, well didnt service cuts arrive feburary 7th 2010 and then the cuts wasn't even that bad (try losing up to 6-8 routes a year for 9 years straight then talk about the quality of service). I mean as far as experience, transit presidents as of recent (think of Ford and their president who ran an airplane company with no automobile experience) don't have transit experience but they do have the business savvy to keep a business running smoothly without affect in passengers wallets (once again, CTA didnt have any transit cuts or fare increases in 2011.......SHAME!!!!!!!!!! on the people that complain).


Rodriguez's experience is basically as a public administrator. As far as I can tell, he doesn't have actual business experience. Heck, I'd take someone with business experience who could actually run CTA like a business, as that might cut down on some of the stupid, costly decisions that are made.

Other responses say Rodriguez didn't listen to passenger complaints about the bowling alley seating in the 5000-series, in the world today you have to be better than the rest and with these new rail cars also comes along with the future. These cars are breaking away from "OLD & SAFE CHICAGO" and going with "NEW & GROUNDBREAKING CHICAGO". I mean if these rail cars would have came 5 years ago, the would have looked and operated exactly like the 3200 & 2600 series rail cars, not a step in the right direction. By going back, making these cars AC instead of DC (AC power regenerates power from the 3rd rail back to the trains, DC power generated power from the 3rd rail and then releases power not used when a train stops at a station as steam (thats the reason why you may be wondering why CTA subway stations are always hot like an old factory) it represents a new line of rail cars that is evironmentaly friendly, it breaks away from OLD Chicago standards and it only makes Chicago one step closer into becoming a world class city.


The above has nothing to do with Rodriguez at all. The seating layout could be changed with a relatively minor change order. Neither Kruesi, nor Huberman, nor Rodriguez seemed all that concerned about public feedback in this regard. As to "NEW & GROUNDBREAKING" vs. "OLD & SAFE" (whatever that's supposed to mean), the specs on the railcars have nothing to do with Rodriguez either. Kruesi & gang lost time by issuing specs under the old standard, and then had to reissue them later on when they couldn't get any bids. That's where the time was lost. If anybody had been paying attention to the rest of the industry (AC rail cars have been around for a few decades now), then they probably would have seen that coming.

In essence, CTA got dragged kicking and screaming into moving Chicago one step closer to becoming a "world class city" (and, frankly, I don't see what the propulsion system of rail cars has to do with a city being world class or not).

#11 BusHunter

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Posted 27 March 2011 - 01:53 AM

(For the record, his name is Kruesi, not Kruezi)

For one, I don't see anyone "crediting" Huberman for buses ordered when Kruesi was president. Second, I recall at the time that the unofficial, between-the-lines reason Kruesi stepped down and Huberman took over was because Frank had ticked off so many people in Springfield that it was pretty much impossible for him to get anything. I don't think Kruesi had more success than Huberman in that regard.

As for doing a project halfway and not finishing, that's not the real crime. The real crime is starting to build the project without any plan whatsoever on what it was you were going to build, how you were going to operate it, and how you were going to pay for it.

If CTA were able to have finished the block 37 station, then what? You'd have less reliable, less frequent Blue Line service today, and an "Airport Local" doing otherwise the exact same thing the Blue Line would have done (only worse). There never was a serious plan on how to run the service. You'd think that in the several years they were building/paying for the thing, they would have figured out how it was going to operate.

Apparently not.



Rodrugiez didn't cause the service cuts (nor, as some believe, did he really have all that much to do with planning their implementation). The trend of rising gas prices, increasing ridership and reduced funding is something that every large transit system in the country is facing. It's not limited to CTA.

Implementing bus tracker kiosks at every stop would be insanely expensive. Nonetheless, a few locations have had them added (I forget exactly which rail stations, I think 47th Red is one, plus the stop outside of 567 W Lake has one in the window of HQ if you're waiting for the #56).

The Transit TV stuff is privately funded advertising, and the longer CTA can avoid that garbage, the better as far as I'm concerned. We don't need loud, obnoxious TV commercials blasting in our ears every waking moment of the day.

I'll admit that I do have a smart phone, so I can use the mobile website. I've had about a 50% success rate at getting the text message thing to actually send me a text before the bus I was waiting for actually shows up. Nonetheless, when it does work, it is considerably better than a paper schedule. BusTracker will only tell you the bus is "due" if it is at a point within about two minutes running time from your stop. If the bus gets delayed in the mean time, no computer can really predict when it will eventually show up. Also, unless the bus has to turn a corner, if you see "due" on bus tracker then you can generally see the bus coming down the street, so at that point you can put the gadget away.



Rodriguez's experience is basically as a public administrator. As far as I can tell, he doesn't have actual business experience. Heck, I'd take someone with business experience who could actually run CTA like a business, as that might cut down on some of the stupid, costly decisions that are made.



The above has nothing to do with Rodriguez at all. The seating layout could be changed with a relatively minor change order. Neither Kruesi, nor Huberman, nor Rodriguez seemed all that concerned about public feedback in this regard. As to "NEW & GROUNDBREAKING" vs. "OLD & SAFE" (whatever that's supposed to mean), the specs on the railcars have nothing to do with Rodriguez either. Kruesi & gang lost time by issuing specs under the old standard, and then had to reissue them later on when they couldn't get any bids. That's where the time was lost. If anybody had been paying attention to the rest of the industry (AC rail cars have been around for a few decades now), then they probably would have seen that coming.

In essence, CTA got dragged kicking and screaming into moving Chicago one step closer to becoming a "world class city" (and, frankly, I don't see what the propulsion system of rail cars has to do with a city being world class or not).

As far as Block 37 is concerned, alot of the high costs that destroyed that project were from the high cost of construction that was not anticipated due to economic changes at the time. Basically, the project ran out of money because it was way over budget. That's why there looking for a sponsor right now. In fact, the building itself almost foreclosed if it wasn't for Bank Of America purchasing it. That is also why we don't see a Chicago Spire either. Similar situation there, they have an eight to ten story basement garage with no building. Project stopped. Trump Tower got built just ahead of this crisis. Project completed. The superstation at Block 37 could have been used as a local service if completed. A blue line terminal, a red blue line connection/thru service, or simply a orange line terminal could have been established. The loop "L" is very slow in the rush because there are too many trains on it. Some of those lines either could use a merge with another line or an alternate routing. That may be why the transfer station at Roosevelt is such a smash hit. Riders are not dumb either they will travel the fastest route possible. Do we have a world class transit system? If you look at what LA has done in the last 20-30 years and us you can see the differences. A fully functioning BRT, light rail transit, better technology, a new subway system. Us, the orange line, alot of proposals and projects waiting for funding. As far as texting, if you like it then use it. Personally Bustracker is way better than texting due it's real time ability. If kiosks are so expensive, then why not use the Titan TV's for this service. Or incorporate this into the existing CA booth. If you like Rodriguez's job so far you must like waiting for buses 20-25 apart, every season looking over the schedule to see if your bus time changed or got eliminated, longitudinal seating. I guess it could be worse though. Belcaster could still be pres. BTW, learn how to spell Rodriguez!! :P

#12 Busjack

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Posted 27 March 2011 - 07:56 AM

I mean as far as experience, transit presidents as of recent (think of Ford and their president who ran an airplane company with no automobile experience) don't have transit experience but they do have the business savvy to keep a business running smoothly without affect in passengers wallets (once again, CTA didnt have any transit cuts or fare increases in 2011.......SHAME!!!!!!!!!! on the people that complain).

You are very confused.
  • The law says " The Board may appoint an Executive Director who shall be a person of recognized ability and experience in the operation of transportation systems." Not, as Carole Brown put it, "we are delighted" with anyone the Mare recommends.
  • Even though Huberman did not qualify, he did have a degree from the University of Chicago School of Business. You tell us what academic qualification Rodriguez has.
  • This story documents that the reason fares did not go up was that Quinn had this deal that the RTA would be authorized to borrow on the condition that fares would not go up and the state would pay the debt service--not any managerial magic on Rodriguez's part. The story also indicates that, as usual for Quinn, his word wasn't any good.

I mean if these rail cars would have came 5 years ago, the would have looked and operated exactly like the 3200 & 2600 series rail cars, not a step in the right direction.


You misread what I said. I said that the rail car builders wouldn't bid on the Kruesi specs. However, Rodriguez wouldn't implement what Huberman was authorized to do with regard to aesthetics, so the exteriors look exactly the same as the 3200s and the interiors look worse.

The best that can be said for Rodriguez's crew is that maybe they are doing a through test of the 5000s so there won't be service problems when the purchase is finalized. That's a heck of a lot better than what the Kruesi crew did with the NABIs. However, there seems to be a bunch of NABI employees who take offense every time I say that. To bad you can't continue to do what you did on the junkyard forum.

#13 Busjack

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Posted 27 March 2011 - 08:06 AM

As far as Block 37 is concerned, alot of the high costs that destroyed that project were from the high cost of construction that was not anticipated due to economic changes at the time. Basically, the project ran out of money because it was way over budget.


Carole Brown justified the initial expenditure on the basis that the hole was already there.

If you go back to Huberman's President's Report on why to appropriate more money for the shell, the overrun is explained by there being no place to stage the construction equipment. Of course, material costs going up was also cited.

So, as usual, we get one story when the project begins and another when it blows up in one's face.

#14 See Tea Eh

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 06:40 AM

BTW, learn how to spell Rodriquez!!


I don't know who Rodriquez is, but Rodriguez is the head of CTA.

Nonetheless, what others have said in this thread about the last three CTA presidents still stands. Kruesi may have really liked transit, but he wasn't grounded in reality, and went around chasing transit fantasy without regards to paying for it. Huberman came closest to success but still had to learn, on the job, how transit worked.

Rodriguez hasn't shown that he cares how transit works. If he did, you wouldn't have seen so many experienced people pushed out in the last two years replaced with city hall types.

#15 BusHunter

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 07:39 AM

Kruesi was around for longer than your other favorites. He must have been doing a good job. As far as R. Rod, We'll see how long he lasts after Rahm takes office.

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 08:23 AM

Kruesi was around for longer than your other favorites. He must have been doing a good job. As far as R. Rod, We'll see how long he lasts after Rahm takes office.


The logic here is getting weirder. The only thing this proves is that he was Daley's favorite until Madigan told Daley to push him aside. So, Daley then gave him a lobbying job.

Heck, Huberman would have been there longer, except, for some reason,* a vacancy appeared at CPS.

This is the stuff that occurs with one man rule for 22 years.

And, yes, despite what Tracy Swartz at the RedEye wants, Rodriguez will be out. Unlike Huberman and Weis, he doesn't realize it yet, or can't find another job.

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*I know the reason.

#17 BusHunter

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 08:57 AM

The logic here is getting weirder. The only thing this proves is that he was Daley's favorite until Madigan told Daley to push him aside. So, Daley then gave him a lobbying job.

Heck, Huberman would have been there longer, except, for some reason,* a vacancy appeared at CPS.

This is the stuff that occurs with one man rule for 22 years.

And, yes, despite what Tracy Swartz at the RedEye wants, Rodriguez will be out. Unlike Huberman and Weis, he doesn't realize it yet, or can't find another job.

________________
*I know the reason.

I told you I was the only one who liked Kruesi. :mellow: R. Rod and Huberman have definite strengths and weaknesses. You sound like you don't like Daley either. I personally am a fan of an experienced politician or transit man. They seem like they know how to use the system to benefit us the best. A new guy is not going to be as efficient, like a new guy at any job. While they may say "change is good for the soul" we soon may find out how good or bad it will be.

#18 Busjack

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 09:37 AM

You sound like you don't like Daley either. I personally am a fan of an experienced politician or transit man. They seem like they know how to use the system to benefit us the best. A new guy is not going to be as efficient, like a new guy at any job. While they may say "change is good for the soul" we soon may find out how good or bad it will be.


We will soon find out how good or bad the replacement selected by Rahm and rubber stamped by the CTA Board will be (and don't tell me the latter is not going to be the case). Daley himself had his strengths and weaknesses, and realized (unlike his father) that 22 years were enough.

We can see that Daley had his inconsistencies with selecting aides. For instance, apparently at one time the CTA Board searched for the person with the most experience within the agency (Krambles) or outsiders (Alf Savage), but the last couple of times around were "delighted" (to use Carole Brown's term) with Daley's "suggestion." On the other hand, the last time around, Daley found it necessary to go outside for a police chief. Rahm has indicated another path.

However, I would argue that it was obvious enough by 2005 that the CTA under Kreusi's "leadership" was making some monumental mistakes. In that it took another 2 years to recommend someone else to the CTA Board says something. Furthermore, of course, it was the CTA Board's legal responsibility to take responsibility over its management. Same goes for Metra.

It also seems obvious that the mindset of the defenders of the status quo (instead of someone who would actually assess the successes and failures of those in charge) has left the region and the state in the mess that it now is.

#19 artthouwill

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 10:22 AM

In an ideal world, the CTA President would be one with transit experience, a person who actually understands how transit works. A real president should also understand how to operate a business, which CTA is. This would be a serious challenge, since this is a government body, and most, if not all government bodies seem to always operate at a deficit. Yet, because transit primarily operates with government funding, it is crucial that someone with government/political experience or relationships be part of this relationship. I think the general formula that Daley has used was to get the person with political experience to beg Springfield for more money. This generally has worked out to be a patchwork and stopgap measure. We will see if Rahm runs this agency like a business or runs it like his own political machine.

So the dilemma. While an outsider with transit and business experience (and possibly fresh ideas) may seem the best choice, that person surely will bump heads with the political establishment in Chicago and Springfield. Yet having good relationships with the hacks will help move things along.

Also note that other transit agencies in large metros, i.e NY, Washington have similar problems to us.

#20 Busjack

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 11:59 AM

In an ideal world, the CTA President would be one with transit experience, a person who actually understands how transit works. A real president should also understand how to operate a business, which CTA is. This would be a serious challenge, since this is a government body, and most, if not all government bodies seem to always operate at a deficit. Yet, because transit primarily operates with government funding, it is crucial that someone with government/political experience or relationships be part of this relationship.
...

I would also add "be somewhat responsive to the ridership," which may be a P.I.T.A., but something that the Rodriguez administration certainly isn't. Besides coming out and saying that the issue about the seats in the 5000s is settled no matter what the passengers say, the CTA Tattler today pointed to this article in the Chicago Reader about "How To Fix the El" which really is about "how can one efficiently handle the passenger load on the North side?" Besides most people's reaction that the proposals in the article were well thought out, the thing that becomes obvious in the later portions and in the comments to this article is that the consultants basically gave the proponents the shove off. Even if one can take Kevin of the Tattler's view that the scope of the "Vision Workshops" was not something comprehensive, one would have thought that the idea of how to run the express service if it were built would be within the scope of the project.

Of course, with regard to "run it like a business," both the Kruesi and Huberman regimes should be taken to task for each blowing $51 million in their own ways, but it seems like many on Internet boards say "that's in the past" and just give the CTA more funding. I don't agree.

As far as being a political schmoozer, what you say is undoubtedly true, but that should be the Board's responsibility, and Frank was certainly no good at that.



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