A member of Northwestern University’s student government has called for eliminating vehicle traffic on the portion of Sheridan Road that passes through the university, according to a report in the student newspaper, the Daily Northwestern.

Associated Student Government Chief of Staff Isaac Rappoport proposed an amendment to a Safe Transportation Resolution under discussion that the road be reclaimed as a university space as a way to enhance safety, the newspaper said.

Last month, a student was killed when a bicycle she was riding collided with a cement truck on Sheridan Road.

When an ASG senator protested the suggestion on the grounds that “we don’t own Evanston,” Rappoport reportedly countered that it would make the university a safer space for students and faculty.

“He also argued there was no reason to have a major road pass through such a highly-trafficked university area, and his reasoning ultimately won out, and the amendment was passed,” the newspaper reported.

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio...

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  1. Whither NU’s Brand-New ‘Big Box’ Parking Garages?

    I'm guessing Mr. Rappoport wasn't enrolled at NU when the university opted to build two gigantic parking garages on its premises during the past few years. Perhaps the university felt its student-led effort to ban the sale of bottled water on campus more than qualified as its signature effort on being more green and sustainable. It's also a challenge when a large number of students expect to graduate into high paying jobs that will forever end their dependence on a bicycle to get around.

    Fact is, Sheridan Road is not large enough to handle NU's real transportation need: More drive-off space for its student buses, plus cabs and Uber, Lyft drivers picking up and dropping off faculty, visitors, and students coming to the university. I can assume many Evanstonians reading this have experienced being cut off or blocked by a double-parked vehicle in the right lane on Sheridan, basicially because the driver doesn't know or simply can't park out of the way of traffic. 

  2. Logic of this and other universities
    As quoted “He also argued there was no reason to have a major road pass through such a highly-trafficked university area, ”
    I guess then that Loyola lakeshore and north Michigan, Roosevelt and UIC should then beable to ban traffic Sheridan; Michigan and Chicago Ave; and Kennedy or at least Harrison, respectively.
    Do NU student spend their days coming up with these “ideas” [to give it a generous name] rather than learning something and thinking about what they are talking about rather than just blurting things out?

  3. silly silly

     All the cars that now use multi-lane Sheridan Road will detour to the residential streets just west of Sheridan. Streets that are already narrower, darker, with numerous driveways and in all other ways unsuitable to handle thru traffic. But I guess the students who dreamed up this totally ridiculous idea didn't think of that. And these are supposed to be our "best and brightest". 

  4. Enough of these over-reactions
    Honestly, I am very sorry for the family and friends of the young lady who lost her life on Sheridan Road recently. Unfortunately, the reactionary proposed solution of closing Sheridan is ludicrous and absolutely an over reach of NU’s legal rights to control Evanston and it’s resident’s. Sheridan is and will always be a major thoroughfare through the East side of Evanston and closing it would have dire ramifications on the other already choked arteries that go North/South int this area. I do support the creation of bike lanes on Sheridan as long as they are not like the nightmare they created on Dodge recently. Bikers still need to be very careful and OBEY THE RULES OF TRAFFIC which, by my observation, is not the norm. When is the last time you saw a person on a bike stop at a stop sign?

    1. crazy suggestion of banning traffic on Sheridan

      I would like to ban commerical traffic on the residential section of Sherman Avenue!  The University should make space available for drop offs and pickups so that a car doesn't double park on Sheridan and cause a jam and create a dangerous situation.   They should route all the university buses to do pickup on campus, not on Sheridan.  If pedestrians and cyclists followed the traffic rules there wouldn't be tragic accidents.

      1. CTA on Sheridan

        Until 10(?) years ago the 201 CTA bus was not on Sheridan. It same up on Chicago Ave. to Greenwood, Sherman to Clark, back to Sherman, Foster to Ridge, Noyes to Sherman, to Cenral then west. That served city hall and two retirement homes and had a lot more passengers than I see  with the present route.  I think the NU buses are less than 10 years ago.

        Old CTA route would reduce traffic considerably. NU buses to Orrington instead of Sheridan ?

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