May 2015

Oakton CTA Station Exceeds Expectations

With nearly three years of operation under its belt, "the Yellow Line's Oakton station has far exceeded  boarding expectations" according to Steve Marciani, a Planning Supervisor with the Village of Skokie. "The station has surpassed 2020 projections", Marciani elaborated. For 2014, boardings at the Oakton station reached 301,125, an increase of 6.3% over the previous year. Interestingly, boardings from the southern Oakton Street entrance were more than double the boardings from the northern entrance. This suggests more intensive use of the station by passengers who are shopping and working in Skokie's emerging business district along Oakton Avenue.


Howard Meyer, Skokie Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, noted "the Oakton station has been very successful and Chamber membership is very pleased with it".Meyer also pointed out that the Oakton station serves as main transportation option for many Park employees.  "The Oakton station increases Downtown Skokie's visibility along the transit line", Meyer added.    Scott Holtz, Vice President of the Independent Merchants of Downtown Skokie (IMODS), and the proprietor of North Branch Yoga asserts, "I see the Oakton station as being the key in making Downtown Skokie a destination location". That means folks will use the Yellow line to visit and patronize Skokie's businesses."   Downtown Skokie is becoming a thriving commercial location. The Yellow Line Oakton Street station has been one of the keys to generating interest and business from both inside and outside the Skokie community. 


Thanks to Brad Rosen for this post. Brad is a writer, lawyer, Skokie resident and member of the Skokie Economic Development Commission.

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LanzaTech $46 million investment

Taiwan-based China Steel Corp. (CSC) has approved a $46 million capital investment in a LanzaTech commercial ethanol facility. The approval follows the successful demonstration of the company's carbon recycling platform at the White Biotech (WBT) Demonstration Plant in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, which uses steel mill off gases for ethanol production.

LanzaTech's gas fermentation process uses proprietary microbes to capture and reuse carbon-rich waste gases, reducing emissions and pollutants from industrial processes such as steel manufacturing, while making fuels and chemicals that displace those made from fossil resources.  A 17 million gallons per year facility is planned for construction by the fourth quarter of this year, with the intention to scale up to a 34 million gallons per year commercial unit soon after. Initial product focus will be industrial ethanol and gasoline additives, with plans for increased product diversity using LanzaTech's microbial capability.  "LanzaTech will help create a more sustainable future by recycling carbon from the steel mill and enabling green growth through the production of useful everyday products." said Dr. Jo-Chi Tsou, chairman of CSC.  "CSC has long been a champion of utilizing new technologies to create a better future, and we are proud to help make this a reality," says LanzaTech CEO Jennifer Holmgren.  To access press release, click here.