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So, I thought I'd be proactive and post the dates early on so we all can plan (and commiserate) accordingly.

A few days before each of the 3 blackout dates we should bump this thread up to remind everyone again (I will if I remember or someone else feel free).

Metra Bicycle Policy 2014
For 2014, bicycles are permitted on all weekday trains arriving in Chicago after 9:30 A.M. and leaving Chicago before 3:00 P.M. and after 7:00 P.M., and on all weekend trains, with the following exceptions:

  • All days during Taste of Chicago - July 9, 2014 to July 13, 2014
  • Lollapalooza - August 1, 2014 to August 3, 2014
  • Air & Water Show - August 16, 2014 & August 17, 2014

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Thanks for posting these. I'm grateful NOT to be dealing with the south side red line shutdown as I was last year. It makes this a little easier to bear.

Thanks for the reminder.....folders are still okay per Metra Bike Policy 2014:

16. Folding bicycles in protective covers are permitted on all trains at all times but should not block train aisles or doorways.

And that's a beautiful thing.

Bill P said:

Thanks for the reminder.....folders are still okay per Metra Bike Policy 2014:

16. Folding bicycles in protective covers are permitted on all trains at all times but should not block train aisles or doorways.

Has anyone pointed out to Metra that this is an asinine policy?  Oh, that's right, the bicycle advocacy group, the CBF is dead, and the "replacement" isn't going to say anything that might make Metra look bad.   Are people that need the bicycle to get to work supposed to simply take the days off?   Taste and Lolla each hit a number of weekdays.  A real bicycle advocacy group would be pushing for better bicycle access to Metra.   And, of course, it takes away three weekends from Bicyclists to use Metra to explore elsewhere....

Metra isn't exactly a good commuting tool during the rest of the year, either. No bikes on morning trains until after the morning rush, and none during the afternoon/evening rush. It seems like the only workers who could bike/Metra to work in the first place are the ones who don't have a 9-5 job.

Not that that in any way detracts from your point. It irritates the hell out of me, too.

Crazy David 84 Furlongs said:

Has anyone pointed out to Metra that this is an asinine policy?  Oh, that's right, the bicycle advocacy group, the CBF is dead, and the "replacement" isn't going to say anything that might make Metra look bad.   Are people that need the bicycle to get to work supposed to simply take the days off?   Taste and Lolla each hit a number of weekdays.  A real bicycle advocacy group would be pushing for better bicycle access to Metra.   And, of course, it takes away three weekends from Bicyclists to use Metra to explore elsewhere....

Yep. I'm one of those. Chicago to Northbrook. Thankfully, these blackout dates don't have an impact on me.

Cameron 7.5 mi said:

Since Metra's bike rules are direction specific, many 9-5 reverse commuters take bikes to reach suburban jobs. During the blackout dates these commuters are pretty much SOL.



Simon Phearson said:

Metra isn't exactly a good commuting tool during the rest of the year, either. No bikes on morning trains until after the morning rush, and none during the afternoon/evening rush. It seems like the only workers who could bike/Metra to work in the first place are the ones who don't have a 9-5 job.

Not that that in any way detracts from your point. It irritates the hell out of me, too.

Crazy David 84 Furlongs said:

Has anyone pointed out to Metra that this is an asinine policy?  Oh, that's right, the bicycle advocacy group, the CBF is dead, and the "replacement" isn't going to say anything that might make Metra look bad.   Are people that need the bicycle to get to work supposed to simply take the days off?   Taste and Lolla each hit a number of weekdays.  A real bicycle advocacy group would be pushing for better bicycle access to Metra.   And, of course, it takes away three weekends from Bicyclists to use Metra to explore elsewhere....

Heads up. Starts tomorrow through Sunday.

So I'm dense and didn't understand the blackout rules. Got to my Metra stop this morning and was obviously denied entry. Proceeded to time trial for 20 miles to my office in Northbrook. Arrive a sweaty mess since I was not prepared for my journey.

It just irks me that reverse commuters would be subjected to this earlier in the morning when the taste isn't even open. I would gladly take the option of taking the train in and cycling home. Grr. 

It's never made any sense to me that they apply these blackouts to reverse commuters. Good excuse for a folding bike.

Lanterne Rouge said:

So I'm dense and didn't understand the blackout rules. Got to my Metra stop this morning and was obviously denied entry. Proceeded to time trial for 20 miles to my office in Northbrook. Arrive a sweaty mess since I was not prepared for my journey.

It just irks me that reverse commuters would be subjected to this earlier in the morning when the taste isn't even open. I would gladly take the option of taking the train in and cycling home. Grr. 

Couldn't agree more.   I wonder if any of metra's board has a commuter on it.  May be time for someone to start a petition and get the media involved.  Anyone ever done that before?

Lanterne Rouge said:

It just irks me that reverse commuters would be subjected to this earlier in the morning when the taste isn't even open. I would gladly take the option of taking the train in and cycling home. Grr. 

You can also get these dates and up-to-the-minute info on Metra's blackout times and days with "Can I bring my bike on Metra right now?"

http://gridchicago.com/metra/

I'll be SOOO glad when the Taste is over. (*many unprintable comments about street/sidewalk conditions that affect getting around in the Loop right now*)

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