Chicago Surface Lines: Linking Chicago’s Neighborhoods covers 12 of the nearly 90 streetcar routes the Chicago Surface Lines (CSL). The 12 routes are covered in detail from 1945 to the end of streetcar service on these routes. 8 of the 12 routes did not enter the Central Business District of Chicago, but linked neighborhoods on the south, north, west and east side of the city. Many linked the city to suburbs. The four routes covered in detail in the first section are the 63rd Street/63rd street extension, Broadway/State/Broadway, Cottage Grove and Western Avenue routes. Each section is filled with facts, interested features of the route, historical notes and information about the intersecting CSL, bus, and “L” routes and the interurban and passenger railroads. The photographs in Chicago Surface Lines: Dispatch 8 Linking Chicago’s Neighborhoods cover the right-of-way along the route. Also, a roster of equipment used on each route is presented in table form.
The next section of Chicago Surface Lines: Linking Chicago’s Neighborhoods presents comparison photographs of the routes then and in 2017. The book includes a complete map of the streetcar routes in Chicago. In the next section four important crosstown routes are covered, Damen North, Belmont, Irving Park and Lawrence. Also, included are a variety of routes near Lake Michigan with photographs. The final sections cover the types of streetcars, variation on the Cottage Grove route and finally the central business district with a detailed map of the routes.
The Shore Line Interurban Historical Society that published Dispatch 8 Chicago Surface Lines: Linking Chicago’s Neighborhoods, is a non-profit organization that publishes a quarterly magazine and dispatches about urban, suburban and interurban passenger rail service in the Chicago Hub region. For more information on this organization or to join visit their website at www.shore-line.org.
If you want to learn about the Chicago Surface Lines and the history of public transportation in Chicago, you will love this book Chicago Surface Lines: Linking Chicago’s Neighborhoods.