Evanston police say they plan to continue a targeted traffic enforcement effort along Ridge Avenue that started last fall.

Cmdr. Ryan Glew says the department’s traffic unit will focus on Ridge for one day each week, looking for speeders, people unlawfully using electronic devices, disobeying traffic control devices and not wearing seat belts.

Glew says that when the enforcement campaign began late last October there’d been 20 traffic accidents at the intersection of Ridge Avenue and Greenleaf Street by that point in the year, up from eight in all of 2016.

After the campaign began there was only one crash at the intersection through Dec. 19. 

Evanston aldermen are scheduled to discuss other possible steps to improve safety along Ridge Avenue during the City Council meeting Monday night.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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  1. Ridge vehicle crashes

    As this article notes, in 2016 the intersection of Ridge & Lake had 29 crashes and Ridge & Greenwood had 26 crashes. The intersection of Ridge & Howard had 24 crashes (which are probably only in Evanston and not on the Chicago side. This location should  also be included in the safe driving campaign. Note that this location has mast arm traffic signals, a dedicated left turn lane but only lanes thatare 9 feet wide. A standard lane is 12 feet wide. Evanston should request data from Chicago on Ridge from Devon to Howard which has two 12 foot driving lanes, Mast arm traffic signals and also only a 25 mph speed limit.

  2. Awful road to drive through
    I don’t know how a cop watching drivers will prevent crashes due to blindspots, narrow roads and confusing traffic patterns

  3. Everyone knows that Ridge Ave
    Everyone knows that Ridge Ave is a total mess, and no one seems to be doing anything about it…at least not anything of real substance. These lanes are way too narrow, there are too many cars from the side streets turning left or going straight through busy, uncontrolled intersections. There is poor visibility, which places drivers, and more importantly, pedestrians, in harm’s way. I fail to understand how the city allows this to continue. Can someone please explain to me why we need 2 lanes in each direction? Can’t we have a single lane going each way, and a 2-way turn-only lane in the center? If that’s not feasible then there must be other solutions. For crying out loud, we have a world-class traffic institute here at Northwestern–can’t we have them design and implement solutions that will save lives?? Why is there no political will here?

    1. Why 4 Lanes on Ridge?

      To answer your question, it is because Evanston city employees and Evanston City Council work for the local businesses, not for the residents. Every decision that is made in this town may be propped up with your tax dollar, but it has to pass muster with the local business muscle and Northwestern. Among other things, those factions want a 4 lane highway running through the center of Evanston to the downtown area and RESIDENT safety be darned. Ask yourself why other communities protect their residential artery streets through traffic control devices, but Evanston residential artery streets are managed as though they are country highways. Our town doesn’t have a huge geographic footprint, but no resident is protected from speeding and unsafe traffic.

  4. Anyone Out There Tuesday Morning?
    Wish EPD had been on Ridge Tuesday morning… A lady was pushing her shopping cart down one of the northbound lanes during the morning rush hour (I guess because the sidewalks were too snowy for the cart.) Cars kept having to slam on their breaks to avoid hitting her.

    1. Call it in
      If you saw it, did you call the police? They would have come and handled the situation.
      Actually, as I went up and down Ridge during the day I saw several traffic stops, both north and south bound. Seem to be a heavy enforcement activity.

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