Chicago ADA Paratransit Service Improvements
Effective Friday, March 28, 2008, there is a new process to book your trips
in the Chicago ADA service area. Reservations will be taken on Friday, March
28, 2008, for transportation on Saturday, March 29, 2008. Please read below for
On July 1, 2006 Pace became responsible for managing the Americans with Disabilities
Act (ADA) Paratransit Service in the city of Chicago. After transitioning existing
operations, Pace held public meetings from April through May of 2007 to obtain
feedback from passengers on the recommendations for restructuring of service.
The consensus was that the current service model, which we inherited from
CTA, does not work. It is evident a new service design and implementation of
technologies is needed to better serve our passengers.
Service Area Details
One major change that will improve many aspects of Chicago ADA Paratransit
Service is the introduction of 3 service areas in Chicago.
Chicago ADA Service Areas (Zones) Click to Zoom *
Pace has established three service areas (zones) for the Chicago ADA service.
One carrier will be assigned to each service area. To book a trip, you need only
call the carrier for the service area where your trip begins. Your return trip
will be scheduled by that carrier. Again, it will only require one call.
The only time you will need to make more than one call is if you book multiple
trips during the day, some originating in a different area. You would then have
to make a second call to the carrier of the area where your additional trips
For example, if you travel from the South area to the North area in the morning,
and back in the afternoon, you would book your entire trip in one call with the
South area carrier. However, if you travel from the South area to the North area
in the morning, but need to make additional trips in the North area before returning
to the South area, you would call the South area carrier for the original trip
and your return trip. You would need to make a second call to the North area
carrier for the additional midday trips.
The service areas and carriers are as follows:
- Service Area 1 (South): SCR
- Service Area 2 (Central): CDT
- Service Area 3 (North): MV Transportation
Booking your trip
For most trips, you will call one number to book your trip. Pace has established
three service areas (zones). One carrier is assigned to each area. All three
carries will operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week but mirror fixed route service
hours. Reservations will be taken Monday through Sunday 6:00am to 7:00pm.
The phone number for each service area is as follows. (See map for more detail.)
If your trip originates in:
Service Area 1 (South Zone - 71st St. south to Sibley)
Service Area 2 (Central Zone - between 71st St and Fullerton)
Voice --- 866-926-9632
Service Area 3 (North Zone - Fullerton north to Central)
Voice --- 866-926-9633
TTY ---- 866-764-1136
To book a trip, you call the carrier for the service area where your trip
begins. Your return trip will be scheduled by the same carrier. Again, both trips
require one call. For example:
If you travel from the South (Service area 1) to the North (Service area 3)
or the Central (Service area 2) area you call the South area carrier for the
original trip and your return trip.
There may be a few trips that would require you to call more than one carrier.
If you are taking additional trips in the area you have traveled into, you would
need to make a second call to the carrier in the service area where your additional
trips originate. For example:
If you travel from the South service area into the Central service area and
then choose to travel within the Central service area, you would book your first
trip with the South service area carrier and you would book your trips to travel
within the Central service area with the Central service area carrier.
Guaranteed trip reservations
Customers no longer have to make multiple calls to carriers in a search of
service. Passengers are guaranteed a trip reservation in accordance with FTA
regulations. The carrier must accommodate all trip requests within the negotiable
hour window. This means the carrier may negotiate pick up times an hour before
or after the desired departure time and is required to provide a trip within
this hour window.
Extension of the service area to the north, west and south of Chicago
The Chicago ADA service area has been extended to include more of Northwest,
Southwest and South suburban Cook County. This would provide some direct service
into these areas without transferring with suburban services. However, when traveling
within the suburban areas reservations will continue to be booked with the suburban
carrier in that service area.
Transportation to additional public places
The service boundaries were expanded to include common points of interest
identified by customers at the public meetings held throughout Chicago. The service
area has been expanded to include transportation to the following locations:
- River Oaks Shopping Center
- Chicago Ridge Mall
- Brookfield Zoo
- North Riverside Park Mall
- Hines Veterans Administration Hospital
- Loyola University Medical Center
- Lutheran General Hospital
- Golf Mills Shopping Center
- Old Orchard Shopping Center
Subscription service will continue uninterrupted
Subscription services will continue to be provided to existing passengers
uninterrupted. Pace has decreased the waiting list for subscription service and
plans to increase subscription service with the additional service providers
in the restructured service.
Transfers will be required when traveling to and from the North Service Area
3 and the South Service Area 1. The transfers will be vehicle to vehicle transfers.
The passenger will stay on board the vehicle until the connecting vehicle arrives.
Can I travel outside my home service area without transferring?
Yes, for most of your trips. If you are traveling to a neighboring service
area you will be able to travel direct without transferring. For example:
If you travel from the South (Service area 1) to the neighboring Central area
(Service area 2).
When will I need to transfer between service areas?
The only time a transfer will be necessary is when you are traveling from
the North Service Area 3 to the South Service Area 1, or the South Service Area
1 to the North Service Area 3. The transfer will be free and your driver will
wait with you until the second vehicle arrives to pick you up.
Note: The transfer procedure between suburban and city services does not
change. You will continue to book your trip from the suburbs to the city with
both the suburban carrier and the city carrier for the service area you are
If my trip requires a transfer, do I book each segment of the trip
with both carriers?
No. For transfers between Service Area 1 and 3 you need only call the carrier
for the service area where your trip originates to book both legs of your trip.
Your trip, including your return trip will be reserved with one phone call. Pace
will coordinate the connection between the transferring vehicles.
What if the transferring vehicle is late?
The carrier may provide a direct trip if the connecting vehicle is estimated
to be more than 10 minutes late for the transfer.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will I be able to travel outside my home service area without transferring?
Yes, for most of your trips. You will continue to be able to ride anywhere
in the city, and to some new destinations outside the city to which you may be
able to get a direct trip (see map for more information). If you are traveling
to a neighboring service area, for example Area 1 to Area 2, you will be able
to travel direct without transferring. The only time a transfer will be necessary
is when you are traveling from Area 1 to Area 3, or Area 3 to Area 1. The transfer
will be free and your driver will wait with you until the second vehicle arrives
to pick you up.
Why do I have to transfer if I travel between Area 1 and Area 3?
In order to improve the efficiency of service and on-time performance, Pace
is assigning one carrier to each of the service areas. Because the carriers will
be focusing on a smaller segment of the city, your trips are more likely to be
on time, and more direct. Longer trips across the city put a strain on the availability
of service and hurt on-time performance.
If my trip requires a transfer, do I book each segment of the trip
with both carriers?
No. You need only call the carrier for the service area where your trip originates
to book the entire trip. Pace will handle the arrangements for the vehicle you
will transfer to, and also your return trip when you call to book your trip.
Your entire trip will be reserved with one phone call!
If I live in the suburbs but within a service area, do I use “Chicago”
service or suburban service?
If your trip originates in a suburb that is within the extended service area
and you are traveling into and out of Chicago, you may book your trip with the
city carrier for the service area you are entering. If your trip is suburb-to-suburb,
you will book your trip with the suburban service.
Will there be any changes to subscription trips?
No. If you currently have a subscription trip, that will continue after the
transition. In addition, Pace wants to give more subscriptions to riders. Call
Pace Customer Relations at (800) 606-1282 (voice) or 708-339-4062(TTY) to see
if you qualify for subscription service.
Whom do I call if I have a complaint?
Pace's Customer Relations number will not change. It is (800) 606-1282
(voice) and choose option 2 or 708-339-4062(TTY).
Will there be a fare increase?
As of February, 2008, Pace has no plans to raise fares in the foreseeable
future. However, we are regulated by very strict state guidelines regarding how
much we have to collect in fares relative to our cost to operate the service.
If I'm a senior, do I ride free?
Free rides are not available for seniors on ADA paratransit service. Free
rides are only available to registered seniors on fixed route Pace buses, CTA
buses and trains, and Metra trains. Call the RTA at 836-7000 from any area code
to inquire about how to register for these free rides on fixed route buses and
If a different carrier's vehicle comes to pick me up other than
the one that operates in my service area, should I assume this is the correct
vehicle for my pickup? Will Pace notify me as to what vehicle is on its way?
Occasionally, during periods of heavy demand, a different carrier may be assigned
to some trips. If this happens for a trip that you've booked, Pace will make
every effort to notify you ahead of time so that you know which vehicle to look
If I use the Taxi Access Program (TAP), do I have to transfer between
area 1 and area 3?
No. There are no changes to the Taxi Access Program. You will not need to
change vehicles at any time if you are using TAP for your trip.
For More Information
If you have any questions about Pace's ADA Paratransit Service, please
contact Pace's Customer Relations
at 847-364-7223 (Voice) or 708-339-4062 (TTY)