A semi-trailer truck loaded with Pepsi products became stuck under the CTA Purple Line viaduct at Davis Street in Evanston Friday afternoon.

It’s a fairly frequent occurrence in Evanston, where short viaducts — in this case with just 11-feet-9-inches of clearance — pose an obstacle to forward motion for trucks that often are just a little bit taller.

Two lanes of Davis Street traffic were blocked while tow truck drivers from North Shore Towing worked to pull the damaged semi out of its predicament.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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  1. Yes, that crumbling viaduct has seen many stuck trucks, maybe less because it is low, than truck drivers push their luck despite height signage visible at least a 1/2 block in advance of arrival. Further, the structure of that viaduct is precarious. It’s unsafe, especially for pedestrians walking under it. Check out the Nov 2001 “Downtown Evanston Transit, Circulation and Development Study.” Even then, this particular viaduct was a concern. When I contacted CBS2 about this is 2021, they interviewed me live at the site on Dec 8, 2021 & aired it Dec 9 AM. They also that day interviewed a CTA representative, who said they’d get to that viaduct in 2025. Evanston citizens would benefit if any Evanston-based news source pursued the safety risk to trucks (where “stuck” further erodes the structure) and pedestrians, and demand the CTA repair this viaduct before 2025. CTA claims the viaduct has been supported with metal struts, but it’s the cement (?) material that is the problem.

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