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Afternoon Shift: Chicagoland transit, CPS chicken nuggets and franchising

We look at a plan that would revamp Chicagoland's public transit system. 'Chewing the Fat' co-hosts Monica Eng and Louisa Chu try to learn what is in the chicken nuggets that Chicago Public Schools serves. The city pension bill has now passed both the state chambers of the Illinois legislature.


  1. A plan to change Chicagoland transit

    Perhaps you have already about Transit Future, an ambitious, wide-ranging Chicago area transit plan. The plan by the Center for Neighborhood Technology and the Active Transportation Alliance has been making the rounds on the web. It proposes lots of ideas, like connecting O'Hare and Midway airports and fixing holes in the transit system's layout.

    The Center for Neighborhood Technology's Jacky Grimshaw directs the Transit Future project. She stops by to talk about this ambitious plan and whether or not it is something that we could realistically see in our lifetime. We're also joined by Ron Burke, executive director of the Active Transportation Alliance. 

  2. Former LA mayor Antonio Villaraigosa speaking at the Transit Future campaign press conference
    Former LA mayor Antonio Villaraigosa speaking at the Transit Future campaign press conference
  3. Chewing the Fat: What ingredients are in CPS chicken nuggets?

    'Chewing the Fat' co-hosts Monica Eng and Louisa Chu update us on their quest to find out the ingredients used in the chicken nuggets Chicago Public Schools serves. Plus, they give us some helpful 'how-to's' on wine and cheese.
  4. City pension bill passes both Illinois chambers

    The city pension bill has now passed both the state chambers of the Illinois legislature and is on the governor’s desk. The bill does not have a mandate for a Chicago property tax hike. Instead, Mayor Emanuel is counting on City Council to draft and approve a hike. Will that happen? Recent history suggests that Mayor Emanuel has a very supportive city council. But will the issue of raising taxes in an upcoming election year make aldermen nervous? Alderman Bob Fioretti (2nd) joins us for more.

  5. Tourism in Chicago

    Perhaps you have not noticed, but our city has been on display the past three days. 6,000 travel operators, tour operators and foreign journalists have been here for the huge industry show, International Pow Wow. The idea is that the show will create more tourist visits and dollars for Chicago. US Travel CEO and President Roger Dow joins us to share how it went. But first, we hear what folks who attended thought of Chicago. 

  6. Bigger than burgers and friends, franchising blamed for low wages

    This week, the series Front and Center has been investigating a business model known as franchising. It’s a way for a brand-name company to have small-business owners run its locations. Franchising can be efficient and help keep consumer prices down. But critics point to low wages and poor work conditions in heavily franchised industries like fast food and convenience stores. We hear how franchising works in commercial cleaning. Some janitors say they should not be treated as franchisees and that they deserve to earn at least the minimum wage. WBEZ’s Chip Mitchell and Shannon Heffernan have the story.
  7. Chicago International Charter Schools display "I AM" art exhibit

    Teenagers are all about taking “selfies” these days-you know, when you take a photo of yourself by sticking your arm out and snapping a picture. WBEZ’s Becky Vevea found a high school art class on the far north side that used “selfies” for a bigger art project. Students at Chicago International Charter Schools' Northtown Academy and their teacher Jeanette Thompson recently shared their experiences creating selfie portraits for a city-wide art exhibit called “I AM”. 

  8. Tech Shift: What's next for XP users?

    Tuesday was the last day that Microsoft provided support for Window XP users. It has been largely phased out of PC use in recent years, but some home and businesses still use it, including ATMs and other business applications. So now that there is not any, how will this affect you? WBEZ's network administrator Aaron Duncan explains.