• Jessica Koscielniak/Sun-Times
  • The “Bat Cave”

The Sun-Times just took readers for a spin. They traveled Chicago’s ‘Bat Cave,’ as the banner headline across page one of Monday’s paper dubbed the 2.5-mile busway that links lower Randolph Street and McCormick Place.

Columnist Neil Steinberg discovered the busway when Cook County Board president Tony Preckwinkle took it as she and Steinberg returned to the Loop from a visit to the county jail. Preckwinkle called it the Magic Road, said Rahm Emanuel called it the Bat Cave, pointed out the exit Richard M. Daley used going home when he was mayor. Steinberg reported the $43 million road was built for convention buses but politicians really take advantage of it. It’s gated at both ends, and you need a special pass card to open the gates. Steinberg made all this sound really neat. His story reminded me of the time I was brand-new to Chicago and a Sun-Times photographer racing to a fire plunged us down onto Lower Wacker Drive.

Lower Wacker at the time was over 40 years old. But it was new to me. This is so cool, I thought.