The final warning and subsequent speeding tickets will begin to be issued this week from Automated Speed Enforcement (ASE) cameras in the Children’s Safety Zone near Columbus Park on the West Side. The camera at 5816 W. Jackson Blvd. will begin issuing tickets to speeding motorists on Friday, December 20.
Two other cameras, at 5454 W. Irving Park Rd. near Portage Park and 6523 N. Western Ave. near Warren Park, will begin issuing final warnings and tickets on Tuesday, December 24.
The City plans to equip Children’s Safety Zones around parks and schools with ASE cameras in an effort to increase safety and reduce speeding. Any revenue generated by the program is to be invested in critical safety initiatives including after-school, anti-violence and jobs programs; crossing guards and police officers around schools; and infrastructure improvements, such as additional signs, crosswalk markings and other traffic safety improvements. The Children’s Safety Zones are designated within 1/8th of a mile from Chicago parks or schools.
The City ordinance establishing the program narrows the hours and locations of enforcement that are allowed under state law, and provides for the following:
• The enforcement hours will be limited from 7 am to 7 pm in safety zones around schools on school days (Monday through Friday); 7 am to 4 pm: 20 mph speed limit when children are present; 30 mph speed limit when no children are present 4 pm to 7 pm: 30 mph speed limit
• The enforcement hours around parks will be limited to only those hours parks are open (typically 6am to 11pm, 7 days a week) with a 30 mph speed limit. The City will start enforcement by only issuing tickets for speeders going 10 or more miles per hour over the posted speed limit. That ticket threshold will gradually be lowered going forward.
Fines for violations are $35 for vehicles traveling 6-10 miles per hour over the posted speed limit while in a safety zone, and $100 for vehicles traveling 11 or more miles over the posted speed limit. Last month, the City announced that at four Chicago neighborhood parks where ASE cameras have been installed, the number of recorded speeding events has dropped by nearly two-thirds from the first week of warnings to the third week of ticketing. Through the ASE cameras, the City has issued more than 375,000 30-day warnings, 50,000 final warnings and 8,000 tickets to date.