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Old 03-03-2010, 12:12 PM
 
4 posts, read 8,896 times
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hey everyone, I've got a quick question. I'm looking at living downtown around pearson st. I need to get to the chicago union metra station which is close to...wacker drive? Off adams? So I can catch a train out to Lisle. It looks like to take a bus from pearson to the metra station, it would take about an hour. That is a LOOONG time for such a short distance. lol Could I possibly just...ride a bike down to the metra station and take my bike on the train with me to lisle?

FYI I'm not that familiar with Chicago, at all. I'm living in SLC right now. Looking at a new job in Lisle.

thanks everyone for your feedback
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Old 03-03-2010, 12:33 PM
 
Location: Saint Louis, MO
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You can only take a bike on Metra trains during off-peak hours (not rush hour, basically).
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Old 03-03-2010, 12:34 PM
 
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The general rule is that you cannot take a bicycle on the train during rush hour in the direction of "heavy passenger volume" AND there has to be room on the ADA cars for the bike (which lose out to any handicapped riders for obvious reasons AND days when there is a scheduled festival downtown they can prohibit bikes AND Metra's employees get to make the call even in non-rush hour / reverse commute situations BUT the practical experience of many on the BNSF is that it is feasible to do exactly what you want...

Bikes on Trains
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Old 03-03-2010, 01:31 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billiken View Post
You can only take a bike on Metra trains during off-peak hours (not rush hour, basically).
The rule is actually that you can't take a bike on the train towards downtown during the morning rush or away from downtown during the evening rush. Therefore, if you're commuting from Chicago to Lisle, it should be allowed. But, as chet said, it might be too crowded for a bike on that particular line at the time you're using it.

Why don't you just lock up your bike in front of Union Station and get on the train? As long as you get a solid lock (preferably two) I wouldn't worry about it getting stolen.
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Old 03-03-2010, 01:49 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
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You need to go to Union Station and grab one of their brochures for you line. At the bottom of the page, for each train, underneath the listing of what time the train arrives at each stop, is the maximum number of bicycles per train. You will see no number listed for the trains where bicycles are not allowed. Where allowed, you could possibly ask the conductor, as some of them tend to stick to the same trains day in and day out, whether or not the trains can handle their bicycle demand, or if they commonly have to deny entrance. Also, keep track of special weekends, like the Taste, where bicycles are prohibited to accommodate higher traffic.
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Old 03-03-2010, 01:58 PM
 
Location: Arizona
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I used to take that same line a ways back and also got off at Lisle. They didn't allow bikes on at all when I rode it.
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Old 03-03-2010, 03:37 PM
 
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I have seen folks with the slick folding bikes get on even crowded rush hour trains. I think the bicyclists group got Metra to agree that as long as the thing is inside a carry bag it is just like luggage. I assume the reason people don't lock these up outside the station is because the main employment centers in Lisle are too far to be considered walkable from the train station so you need it at the other end --
Amazon.com: Dahon Mariner D7 2010 Folding Bike - Brushed: Sports & Outdoors
Amazon.com: 20" Folding Bike Carrying Bag/Backpack: Sports & Outdoors
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Old 03-03-2010, 03:43 PM
 
4 posts, read 8,896 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chet everett View Post
I have seen folks with the slick folding bikes get on even crowded rush hour trains. I think the bicyclists group got Metra to agree that as long as the thing is inside a carry bag it is just like luggage. I assume the reason people don't lock these up outside the station is because the main employment centers in Lisle are too far to be considered walkable from the train station so you need it at the other end --
Amazon.com: Dahon Mariner D7 2010 Folding Bike - Brushed: Sports & Outdoors
Amazon.com: 20" Folding Bike Carrying Bag/Backpack: Sports & Outdoors

yup, thats exactly right. I need it on the other end to get to work. sounds kinda like it could be a 50/50 thing. some people are saying no i can't, some are saying yes i can. lol

my real question is why the heck it takes so long to get to the metra station from pearson st. it takes an hour, but i swear i could bike it in a half hour at the most looking at google. lol
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Old 03-03-2010, 04:38 PM
 
28,460 posts, read 80,771,081 times
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CTA buses stop too much. On the route from Pearson to Union Station they probably stop ten times for passengers, they get hung up by stop lights. Average speed is less than a kid on scooter, (I know I would use one to get to Wabash and the the river and beat the bus every time...

The "bike in a bag" is a slam dunk for your situation. It is speficially "approved with out restriction" on the Metra link.

Good Luck!

(and in the winter I hope you make a work buddy that help you out cause riding in the snow is not fun...)
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Old 03-03-2010, 05:24 PM
 
Location: Oak Park, IL
5,523 posts, read 13,305,582 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattywo85 View Post
I used to take that same line a ways back and also got off at Lisle. They didn't allow bikes on at all when I rode it.
Bikes have been allowed on trains only for the last four years or so.

Here's the metra schedule to Lisle. Note the line that says "Bikes Per Train". This tells you how many are allowed (if any) on any given train. My experience with the Union Pacific West line was that the conductors weren't particularly strict regarding the number of bikes allowed, but maybe the BNSF line is different.

http://metrarail.com/metra/en/home/m...dule.full.html
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