The inside story of CTA 'L' lines

Are you in the Loop when it comes to knowing the ins and outs of the "L"?

If all you know about the Green Line is that it's a Goose Island beer, you're in luck. Two Chicago groups are offering tours this summer that detail the intricacies of the CTA.

The Chicago History Museum examines the city's neighborhoods and train stations through its two-and-a-half hourlong tours on the Brown, Green and Blue Lines and in the Loop.

Meanwhile, the Chicago Architecture Foundation's "Elevated Architecture: Chicago's Loop by Train" highlights the development of the "L" and its impact on the Loop in a two-hour tour.

Going Public explores the features of the two sets of tours.

>> "Elevated Architecture"

Schedule: Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays

Fare: $19 for adults (includes cost of CTA pass); $16 for adults who already have a pass

Route: The city's architectural details are highlighted at four stops: Harold Washington Library-State/Van Buren, Quincy, Madison/Wabash and Clinton on the Green and Pink Lines.


>> History Museum's "L" tours

Schedule: Each line is typically offered at least one Sunday a month.

Fare: $16 (includes a one-day CTA pass)

Route: The Brown Line tour showcases Lincoln Square; the Green Line South tour includes a stroll through Bronzeville; the Green Line West tour stops at the Garfield Park Conservatory; the Blue Line tour explores Pilsen and Wicker Park and the Loop tour focuses on the elevated stations.


"L" of a story: Chicago author Michael Harvey releases his CTA novel "We All Fall Down" next week. The tale is about a biological weapon unleashed at the Clinton Blue Line stop. Harvey, who also wrote "The Third Rail" about a fictional "L" shooting, will sign autographs July 28 at the Book Cellar, 4736 N. Lincoln Ave.


Last week marked the fifth anniversary of the start of Pink Line service. What do you love/hate about the Pink Line? Send an e-mail to Please include your full name, age and neighborhood.


My pledge to ride every CTA bus line continues. I rode the No. 156-LaSalle last week and boiled my review down to a tweet.

@tracyswartz 42 mins from Belmont/Halsted to Union Station. A leisurely stroll through Lincoln Park. Route is the hipper cousin of the No. 151-Sheridan.

114 routes down, 25 to go!

Next up: No. 82-Kimball/Homan.

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