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The day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, December 27, 1911, Image 5

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1911-12-27/ed-1/seq-5/

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-THE NEWSPAPERS ON STREET CAR SERVICE
. The Chicago Journal has lately been taking a daily slam at the
traction interests.
The Examiner, on Tuesday, said :
"The elevated interests are now paying the penalty of initial
overcapitalization and utter failure to maintain their properties on
a good service basis. The city will not j)ay their depreciation bills
witha-stroke of the pen.
"Worse still, the elevated interests have not even kept their
pledges of service betterments as a rsult of their recent" financial
merger. They have broken their pledge to install through routes
and give transfers.
"In dealing wtih these people the city "cannot forget that the
worst overcrowding on any of the city's traction lines is on the ele
vated roads and that it is deliberate, since, there are now no ob
stacles to immediate through routes.
"It was one of Yerke's favorite tricks to make service as bad as
possible in order that public clamor would coerce the Council into
new franchisei bounties. It is an obsolete trick, as the elevated
people will find out."
Even The Tribune took a crack at the traction magnates, in
part as follows:
"The worst traditions of bad service established under the
Yerkes rule in Chicago are maintained, and maintained in hours
when there is no excuse for it. The street car lines operated by this
gompany north and west fall into a chaotic mess of inefficiency at
exasperatingly frequent intervals.
"It is shrewdness, not stupidity, which produces the execrable
service a shrewdness Which enables the company so to regulate its
schedules as always to have straphangers for its straps.
"Whatever the straps hold up is clear gain. The city is a
partner to thfs in that it collects its per cent of the net receipts and
in that it attemps no "supervision of operation.
"The company not only refuses to keep enough cars in opera
tion after the rush hours to take care of the traffic, but it demon
strates its inability to preserve the intervals between these cars.
They trayel in squads, with long intervals between squads. To add
to the resulting disorder, the train crews choose their routes to suit
''Nothing can justify defects resulting from the policy of
seeking huge profits on the money invested in straps.
"The Chicago Railways company consistently refuses to oper
ate enough car-s and its management consistently succeeds in oper
ating badly. If the city were less tolerant there would be an im
provement." Of course the people of Chicago who use street cars are fully
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