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Sunday, July 10, 2011

Get There: The Purple line to Linden

Check out our youngest child riding the Purple line to Linden. And why is this worthy of a blog post? My children are totally new to the concept of riding on buses and trains and walking everywhere. They've both done an excellent job transitioning to this new means of transportation and so far are patient when waiting for trains, calm when mom puts them on the wrong train and occupied with reading material while taking a long ride.

We recently took the Metra Downtown to the Field Museum and the El home. The Metra was faster in that it only makes one stop before getting to the Ogilvey Station in Downtown, but then we had to take a bus to get to our destination, which added about 20 minutes to our trip and an extra $5. We took the El home and because the CTA shares fares, you can transfer from a bus to the El within 2.5 hours and pay a portion of the fare. The El is much closer to the Field Museum but takes more than 45 to get you to Evanston unless you can grab the Purple line, which we couldn't do because it was off hours. Do I have this right? And when is the CTA going to start running the Purple line express on the weekends, giving Evanstonians the option to get to Downtown Chicago quickly?

This critique cannot possibly be new and I'm very curious to learn more transportation tricks. What is the fastest way to get to Downtown Chicago from Dempster? What passes get you the best deals and where do you buy them? Maybe you can help me figure this all out by emailing me at

Lastly I have to give a shout out to the conductors, ticket takers, bus drivers out there in Chicagoland - you are the BEST. I have never met such friendly public transportation workers in an American city. On one recent bus ride we were actually reminded gently that our stop had come up and that we should get off the bus. Very classy indeed. Good job Chicago.

For your next trip, visit the CTA website at


Thank you for reading my new blog "Evanston Newbie", a recent project that I am using to chronicle my new life in Evanston. Do you have favorite Evanston bakeries, bike shops, events that you can recommend? Send me an email at and I will post my review on this blog. -Lisa Degliantoni

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