Chicago Automobile Trade Association

State bill would open Chicago's Lake Shore Drive to pickup trucks

November 23, 2010
Chicago's network of boulevards, including Lake Shore Drive, would be open for travel by pickup trucks, vans and recreational vehicles that weigh up to 8,000 pounds, under legislation pending before the Illinois General Assembly. Illinois House Bill 3527 would allow those second division vehicles to register as first division vehicles and display passenger vehicle license plates. Moreover, local units of government, including home-rule units, could not prohibit such vehicles from operating on boulevards. The state measure to permit pickups on Chicago's scenic drives would overcome a ban by the city that dates to the 1920s, when pickups were used for work and were considered eyesores. One alderwoman whose lakefront ward is undergoing gentrification said she feared that Lake Shore Drive would be overrun by pickups laden with ladders and paint cans, if the stretch was opened to such vehicles. But pickups nowadays often are family vehicles with many luxury features. And suburbanites unaware of the ban are easy prey for police on Lake Shore Drive and the many boulevards of Chicago. Among urban residents, new-car dealers have suspected the current roadway bans for B-plated vehicles has created a modest chilling effect on sales of such vehicles. The state bill awaits a second reading in the House. It would be ratified upon a third successful reading and then move to the Senate for consideration. Other state legislation the CATA is monitoring: • Vehicle title applications would be amended to include the applicant's age. If an applicant is under age 18 and is not legally an emancipated minor, the application must be accompanied by a statement, signed by the applicant's parent or legal guardian, consenting to the application. If a vehicle has multiple owners and no owner is 18 or a legally emancipated minor, a parental statement of consent is also required, unless one of the other owners is the minor's parent or legal guardian (HB 94). • All insurance companies licensed in Illinois would be required, by July 1, 2004, to provide the secretary of state with a record of all motor vehicle liability policies ineffect on the date the information is provided. Bill also provides for monthly reporting of all   licies issued or canceled (HB 1568).


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