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Rail-y Awesome: APA-CMS Metra Crawl Stops in Park Ridge and Arlington Heights on 5/16/24

On May 15, 2024, a group of planners and affiliated professionals rode the rails for a "Metra Crawl" on the UP-NW line, featuring Park Ridge and Arlington Heights. Both municipalities showcased some of the creative ways they are responding to pandemic-era shifts in work, commuting, and dining patterns to make something truly special!

Both communities still consider their Metra stops as major assets but are experiencing different demands on the land uses around the station. Park Ridge has people taking advantage of the 30-minute ride to Ogilvie a few times per week but, just as often, sees people walking to the local cafés and restaurants to take work calls. In Downtown Arlington Heights, "Arlington Alfresco"-branded outdoor dining started in response to the pandemic as a way to allow restaurants to stay open. Years later, the majority of residents, local businesses, and other stakeholders surveyed are in favor of it (minus the occasional noise complaint) and the exposure it brings to the municipality.

To our speakers: Drew Awsumb, AICP, Claudia Hampel, and Michael Mertes,

Than you for a truly terrific experience from beginning to end, starting with you meeting us on the platform at both stations! It was so informative learning how you're both reacting to pandemic-era shifts in work, commuting, and dining patterns and making something amazing! I'm sure I speak on behalf of everyone when I say thanks for giving us your time and for being so welcoming.


Photos by Justin Keller, AICP


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