New Sidewalks Trip Up Headline Writers (Get It?)
Mayor Daley continued his efforts to make Chicago the "greenest city in America" yesterday, announcing two environmentally-friendly public works pilot projects. Starting next year, the city will install 100 solar-powered bus shelters that could save the city $20,000 in electricity annually. The shelters will be easier to install because they won't require digging to plug their lights into the grid. The city will also be testing sidewalks made out of recycled rubber to see if they can stand up to traffic and weather conditions. The material is supposedly more durable than concrete, less prone to cracking and shifting, and easier to maintain.
Bravo. Hooray. Bully for the Mayor. We love to see renewable energy and recycling all around. What caught Chicagoist's eye about the story this morning was the hilarious procession of bad jokes about the rubber sidewalks in the local media. "City puts bounce in sidewalks," says the Tribune, though to their credit they let it drop there. Not so for the Sun-Times, which winks and says, "Do tread on these: Tires give new sidewalk bounce," and then lays it on thick in the second graf, saying the sidewalk "... offers walkers more bounce per ounce." Surprisingly, the only TV station to bite was Fox, with "Putting a Bounce in Your Step." ABC 7, CBS 2, NBC 5, and WGN all focused on the environmental aspect of the story, but we're still holding out hope that we can watch Bob Sirott smirk his way through a good "spring in your step by next spring" crack. At this rate, they'll all catch up with the local sports departments and their "Chicago Bears down on the Packers" and "Bulls charge into the playoffs" groaners.