The Chainlink

Any theories why the traffic light cycle for Milwaukee/Grand/Halsted got reversed? Until Monday it ran counterclockwise like most other three way intersections. Now it goes clockwise and I can't figure out why. It must have something to do with the construction but I don't see how the cycle helps.

Speaking of construction, any news when the mess on Milwaukee will be finished?

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Completely threw me off on Monday.  I started to pedal into the intersection when the light before mine turned red - thought I was losing my mind!

It's throwing me completely off, and it means catching more reds from there to Kinzie. Which may be why they did it - it seems to reduce the traffic from backing up too much between Hubbard & Kinzie....

Thanks for the heads-up. There are a few other intersections (Lincoln, Wellington and something?) where the cycle is off.  I don't think of it as clockwise or counterclockwise, though: I think it runs EW/NS/ANGLE.  So when I'm on Damen headed towards Irving/Lincoln, or Halsted towards Fullerton/Lincoln, I time my arrival to the light for when Irving or Fullerton turn red.  Nice to know this one is different.  Hope people adjust soon.

Every six-way diagonal I've ever been through in Chicago (until now - this one and one other one the other day, which one I can't remember) has had the lights cycled counterclockwise, and I have always assumed that it was done this way so that cars that push the yellow or run the red are not leaving the intersection as the crossing traffic farthest from them begins moving through it.

The lights are temperature-based. Once it drops below 40°F, they reverse direction.

Lincoln/George and Lincoln/Barry are the only other ones that I know of.



David P. said:

Every six-way diagonal I've ever been through in Chicago (until now - this one and one other one the other day, which one I can't remember) has had the lights cycled counterclockwise, and I have always assumed that it was done this way so that cars that push the yellow or run the red are not leaving the intersection as the crossing traffic farthest from them begins moving through it.

Same here (and my friend followed me into the intersection, too!). I'm glad I'm not going crazy! It is a good reminder to not get lazy with the lights...yikes. Ride safe & always judge for yourself guys!

blair said:

Completely threw me off on Monday.  I started to pedal into the intersection when the light before mine turned red - thought I was losing my mind!

I was surprised there wasn't anything in http://chi.streetsblog.org/ about the light reversal or the construction. 

Construction should be complete in December and full pavement restoration April. This is according to a newsletter sense to nearby residents and businesses.
Ugh. Thanks Steven. December sounds like a long time away dealing with that mess. Last Friday I followed a jaguar with license MARSHA6 inbound. 'Marsha' got really confused when the construction zone ended where the bike lane continues on the right side and the car lane picks back up in the center over the bridge at Ohio. So confused in fact that she split the two and ran over every bollard protecting the bike lane. Thunk-thunk-thunk-thunk... Hilarious given no one was harmed.

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