Milwaukee bridge/Grayland Station

Jump to


    Body
    Grayland A-32 project rendering

    Overview

    Metra is replacing the bridge that carries the Milwaukee District North Line over Milwaukee Avenue near Kilbourne Avenue with a new bridge with new abutments. Grayland Station, just south of the bridge, is being rebuilt with longer platforms, new public address equipment, visual information signs, shelters with on-demand heat on each side, new lighting and new stairs and ramps, making it fully ADA-compliant.

    Benefits

    The new bridge will improve operations and reliability by reducing delays associated with slow zones, track closures or trains canceled for maintenance and repair work on the existing bridge. Replacing the aging bridge is critical because it provides a vital link in the regional and national rail network. If it were to be taken out of service, there would be no viable alternate route. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the bridge was used by 61 Metra trains, 17 Amtrak trains and several Canadian Pacific and Wisconsin Southern freight trains each weekday.

    The improvements to the Grayland Station include longer platforms, new public address equipment, visual information signs, shelters with on-demand heat on each side, new lighting and new stairs and ramps, making it fully ADA-compliant. A temporary Grayland Station, south of the current station, is being used to continue service to the area during the project.

    Progress

    As of May 2024, the project is 76% complete. The new bridge is almost complete, with only walkways, railing, and final painting remaining. The precast retaining walls are complete and the ramps, stairs, and foundations for the new inbound station are approximately 95% complete.

    The railroad tracks have been shifted to their final location on the new bridge and removal of the temporary bridge is approximately 90% complete. Once the temporary bridge is demolished, the street, bike lanes, and sidewalk will be restored around the temporary bridge foundations.  Additional work to be performed after restoration of Milwaukee Avenue includes removal of temporary retaining walls, restoration of the slopes along Kilbourn, and construction of the inbound warming shelter and new outbound station.

    Milwaukee Avenue will remain closed at Kilbourn Avenue until early July 2024. The road was expected to be open by the end of December 2023 but permitting delays and the onset of winter will push back the reopening until July.

    Signs for the vehicular and bicycle detours will remain in place until the road reopens. Southeast-bound vehicular traffic on Milwaukee Avenue is rerouted south on Cicero Avenue and east on Addison Street back to Milwaukee Avenue. Northwest-bound traffic is diverted west on Addison and north on Cicero to Milwaukee.

    Bicycle and pedestrian traffic are rerouted along Addison Street and Kilbourn Avenue, and protected bike lanes are in place on Addison during the closure.

    Funding

    The project is being funded with $15 million from the Federal Transit Administration, $17.8 million from the Federal Railroad Administration, $2.3 million from Canadian Pacific, and $2.9 million in other Metra funding.

    Timeline

    Construction, which is being done by IHC Construction Companies of Elgin, began in 2021 and is expected to be complete at the end of 2024. Work on the Grayland Station will continue to Spring 2025.