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Jon Hilkevitch

Jon Hilkevitch
Jon Hilkevitch has been the Chicago Tribune's transportation reporter since 1997. He is responsible for covering every mode of transportation, both locally and nationally, although his primary focus is transportation news affecting the Chicago metropolitan region.

One day he might write a story about an expressway project, the next day about an airplane accident, the problem of Chicago Transit Authority buses bunching up on downtown Chicago's congested streets or the prospect of privatizing the Illinois Tollway.

The common thread in his reporting is a strong consumer-oriented focus, whether the issue is flight delays at O'Hare International Airport or railroad grade-crossin...
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Jon Hilkevitch has been the Chicago Tribune's transportation reporter since 1997. He is responsible for covering every mode of transportation, both locally and nationally, although his primary focus is transportation news affecting the Chicago metropolitan region.

One day he might write a story about an expressway project, the next day about an airplane accident, the problem of Chicago Transit Authority buses bunching up on downtown Chicago's congested streets or the prospect of privatizing the Illinois Tollway.

The common thread in his reporting is a strong consumer-oriented focus, whether the issue is flight delays at O'Hare International Airport or railroad grade-crossing safety.

In 2001, a team of Tribune reporters co-led by Hilkevitch was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for explanatory journalism for their series "Gateway to Gridlock,'' which chronicled the capacity crisis confronting the airline industry and the nation's commercial airports.

Hilkevitch, 52, also writes a weekly commuting column, called Getting Around, which allows him to interact more informally with readers and to bring their complaints about problems on Chicago-area roads and mass transit to the attention of the appropriate government agencies and, when necessary, to relentlessly prod those agencies until they do the right thing.

Hilkevitch lives in Lisle and commutes to work using Metra, the CTA and his own two feet.

His son, Nicholas, is an FAA-certified commercial pilot. He is completing his senior year at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb and plans to pursue a career in aviation.
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Top Jon Hilkevitch Articles

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  • New deal proposed to boost Gary/Chicago airport

    New deal proposed to boost Gary/Chicago airport
    A tentative agreement valued at up to $100 million will be announced Monday for private investors to develop and manage the long underused Gary/Chicago International Airport and incubate businesses in the surrounding area, the Tribune has learned. The...
  • CTA expands Red Line project to battle slow zones

    CTA expands Red Line project to battle slow zones
    With service disruptions already delaying commuters this summer on the CTA Red Line north branch due to emergency facelifts on seven of the rail system’s most dilapidated stations, transit officials today expanded the project by adding $15 million...
  • Helicopter wreckage moved as investigation continues

    Helicopter wreckage moved as investigation continues
    The wreckage from the fatal crash this week of an emergency medical helicopter south of Rockford is being transported to Kansas for examination, and additional witnesses to the accident will be interviewed, the chief investigator said Wednesday. The...
  • Weeks in review

     
    A roundup of state and local news-review and weekly political chat shows. Descriptions provided by the broadcast outlets in most cases: Chicago Tonight: The Week in Review (WTTW-Ch. 11) Host Joel Weisman with Kathy Bergen (Chicago Tribune), Charles Thomas...
  • Your transit dollars at work

     
    Hill & Knowlton will provide consulting services for the RTA "to build on its foundation of priority initiatives by developing innovative ways of reaching budget goals and defining more specific objectives within the priority initiatives.''... from today'...
  • Jon Hilkevitch: O'Hare UFO story keeps flying

     
    The purported UFO that pilots and other eagle-eyed professionals reported seeing almost four years ago, hovering in place above Gate C-17 at O'Hare International Airport, never went away.Don't get me wrong. The aviators, United Airlines ramp workers,...
  • Quinn pledges money coming 'soon' to avoid CTA cuts, fare hikes

     
    Posted by John Byrne and Jon Hilkevitch at 4:26 p.m. Gov. Pat Quinn pledged today that the state will “soon” come through with promised payments to the Chicago Transit Authority so the agency is not forced to raise fares. The......
  • Could this be the long-awaited end to the curse of other-people's-traffic on the radio?

     
    Is there anything more dreary and tedious than sitting through a traffic-congestion report on the radio that's at least 90 percent irrelevant to you each and every time? Well, today Jon Hilkevitch reports: Google Maps Navigation on Monday introduced an......
  • LaHood: Air traffic controllers have 'personal responsibility'

     
    Posted by Rick Pearson and Jon Hilkevitch at 2:51 p.m. U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, embarrassed by reports of air-traffic controllers asleep at their jobs, said today that as well-trained professionals they have a “personal...
  • Yemeni men arrested in Amsterdam on terror charges after flight from U.S.

    Yemeni men arrested in Amsterdam on terror charges after flight from U.S.
    Two Yemeni men arriving in Amsterdam on a flight from Chicago were arrested Monday on suspicion of preparing a terrorist attack after peculiar items turned up in their luggage, Dutch officials said. U.S. authorities asked the Dutch to make the arrests...
  • Aviation security hassles, weaknesses persist

    Aviation security hassles, weaknesses persist
    Major vulnerabilities persist in the decade since air travelers sacrificed convenience and privacy for the promise of heightened security in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, and the message from the government and security watchdogs is that there still ...