Transport: Chicago Underground

Ever since Manhattan became Bagdad-on-the-Subway 34 years ago, lusty Chicago has toyed with the idea of an underground of its own. But despite years of fantastic traffic messes, civic pounding, editorial urging and earnest planning, Chicago is still the biggest city in the world without a passenger subway.

More than 75% of Chicago's passenger traffic is handled by a vast system of street cars and busses. Chief rapid transit the city proper has is furnished by its far-flung 41-year-old elevated railway system, 14 lines that creep and clang counterclockwise around the "Loop" encircling the 7 by 6-block financial and mercantile district...

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