The evidence is purely anecdotal, but it seems that some unrest might be brewing in the City of Chicago. Now that the Mayor has leased the city’s parking meters to a company that jacked up the rates, people might be staying home rather than feed the meters — which now take as many as 28 quarters for 2 hours.
The City of Chicago has gone ahead with a deal to lease the city’s parking meters to a company that raised the rates — and the results are reportedly tragic. It now costs 28 quarters to park for two hours in the Loop, which some say is causing the meters to fill up with quarters and break.
Sears Tower, the tallest building in the U.S. and abandoned stronghold of the once-powerful Sears, Roebuck & Co., is no more. Its name will be changed to Willis Tower later this year as part of a big leasing agreement with London-based insurer Willis Group Holdings, Ltd. The Chicago Tribune notes that although everyone still calls it Sears Tower, Sears actually moved out in 1992.
A new quarter just started this week at Marian Catholic High School in Chicago, and on the first day back, 300 students were pulled out of class and lined up outside the school, then told to contact their parents and pay their outstanding tuition or they’d have to leave. The Chicago Tribune writes that “by lunchtime, about 100 students were sent home-some confused, some embarrassed and a few angry.” The school says parents owe around $450,000 in outstanding tuition payments, far higher than usual, and that they’re trying to avoid layoffs and other budget cutbacks. Will the poor economy lead to higher attendance at public schools? “If you want a good education, you have to dish it out,” one parent told the paper.
The review website Yelp is being accused again of extorting small business owners — but this time the business owners say that Yelp used the guarantee of positive reviews to get free products for their events. The Chicago Tribune has a quote from the owner of a cupcake shop who says that Yelp “guaranteed us good reviews on the site if we catered one of their parties for free.”
A 58-year-old Wal-Mart employee who said he “couldn’t take it anymore” lit himself on fire outside the Bloomingdale store where he worked late Thursday night and was later pronounced dead at a hospital, authorities said this morning.
WaMu went on an insane building spree in Chicago a few years ago, and when combined with Chase, already a huge player in the Chicago market, it became obvious that there are just too many damn bank branches. Chase recently announced that it would close almost 300 WaMu locations nationwide — 57 of them in the Chicago-area alone. The bank branches replaced local businesses during the boom, but will they come back during the bust?
Nobody told 74-year-old Mrs. Reynolds her American Airlines flight was canceled until she was on-board the wrong one. Her tale of sprinting, being stranded, and customer service failure, inside…
In that strange hinterland between the awesome and the horrific, there will be a Snuggie pub-crawl in Chicago on Saturday April 18th. People in Snuggies – for the uninitiated, blankets with sleeves – will travel from bar to bar, leaving a trail of slaughtered pints in their wake. It’s strictly BYOS, bring-your-own-Snuggie. All hail The Warm Bringer.
Chicago might become the first place in the United States to partially ban the sale of products that contain Bisphenol-A (BPA), the chemical that some studies have shown may have harmful effects on humans. They’re proposing to forbid the sale of any BPA product intended for children. Canada banned the chemical last year, but the FDA has so far come down on the side of manufacturers.
If you flew out of O’Hare in December — we are so sorry. Only 55 percent of O’Hare flights departed on time. If you thought you were smart and chose to fly out of Midway instead — you were, but it was the second worst airport in the US, so don’t get too excited.
Staples took over a month to deliver an order for business cards that they promised to fill in under seven days. The office megastore somehow misplaced reader Brett’s payment confirmation and never sent his order along to their supplier. When Brett asked Staples to fix their mistake and deliver the cards, he was told to pay for a second order and trust that Staples would eventually issue a refund. When he explained that he deserved compensation, not another charge, a manager told him “it would be a disaster to compensate customers based on the amount of problems we cause.”
A City College of Chicago program that gives student-loan refunds the form of pre-paid debt cards is drawing heat due to its bevy of hidden fees.
If you’ve ever wondered why medicines have tamper-proof seals — there’s one reason: an group of still unsolved murders over a quarter of a century old. In September of 1982, cyanide-laced Tylenol killed seven people in the Chicagoland area. Despite a nationwide recall and investigation, no one was ever charged with the crime. Now the FBI has reopened the case.
Whose fault is it when your cable installer climbs up your utility poll and breaks it? Is it yours? Is it your electric company’s? One woman found out the hard way that not only was it her problem — but that ComEd was going to shut her electricity off if she didn’t find a way to fix it.
About 450 Amtrak passengers were stranded in Chicago’s Union Station for almost 24 hours — without food, water or access to reliable functioning restrooms.
There’s a nasty winter storm coming to Chicagoland — a mix of rain, sleet and snow that might result in 12″ of accumulation. Jennifer was scheduled to fly right in the middle of it.