Metra and elected officials broke ground today on a project to rebuild the 79th Street/Chatham, 87th Street/Woodruff and 103rd Street/Rosemoor stations on the Metra Electric Line. The work includes making all three stations accessible to persons with disabilities.
The work is part of the Metra Electric Community Initiative, a multiyear, multimillion-dollar plan to transform 13 stations on the line. When completed, all three stations will have enclosed, ADA-accessible street-level entrances and lobbies with elevators; new stairs and headhouses; new composite deck platforms; and new lighting and signage.
“Our goal is to bring modern and accessible public transit facilities to these communities, and today is one of the first steps in that process,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski. “This project and all the other projects in the Metra Electric Community Initiative program are part of our commitment to My Metra riders to prioritize station improvements and promote transit ridership by creating welcoming and accessible gateways to their communities.”
“My administration’s landmark Rebuild Illinois capital plan isn’t just about modernizing our roads and bridges – it’s about investing in our communities and the people who call them home,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “Today’s groundbreaking to rebuild the 79th Street, 87th Street, and 103rd Street Metra stations to make them accessible for people with disabilities is a prime example of how we are leveraging resources to make sure that every Illinoisan – in every corner of our state – benefits from our investments.”
“The Metra Electric Community Initiative aligns with Cook County’s commitment to transit equity across our region by providing accessible and modern public transportation facilities in our South Cook city neighborhoods,” said Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle. “The rebuilding of these three stations within Cook County’s Fair Transit pilot area further reinforces our collective commitment to build a future of connectivity and inclusivity for our residents.”
“Every time the state of Illinois invests in its communities, it shows that working together can create opportunities for equity and inclusion,” said State Rep. Cyril Nichols. “Through the 79th street, 87th street and 103rd Street renovations, we can continue to connect all communities throughout the state of Illinois.”
“Investments in beautiful and accessible stations like these along the Metra Electric Line are among the best public dollars we can spend,” said RTA Chairman Kirk Dillard. “They benefit these communities, riders, and the region as a whole by serving as a community amenity and further incentivizing people to choose transit over driving.”
“These improvements demonstrate our commitment to investing in the future of our District and ensure that our transportation infrastructure meets the needs of our residents and the growth of our community,” said Cook County Commissioner Stanley Moore.
The work will require each station to be closed for about seven months, with the 79th Street/Chatham closure planned to begin July 10. (Customers can use the 75th St. and 83rd St. Stations as alternatives.) To reduce the impact on customers, the work will be done in stages so that no more than two of the stations will be closed at one time. The plan outlined in the contract calls for one station to be closed and work well under way before work begins on the second station. Once the first station is reopened, construction will begin on the third station.
The $33.9 million contract for the construction work at the three stations was awarded to IHC Construction of Elgin, which has committed to subcontracting 30% of the work to DBE firms. Metra is funding the work with its share of funding from the Rebuild Illinois capital program.
Similar work is already underway at the 147th Street/Sibley Boulevard Station and is expected to be completed this year. Work also began this spring at the line’s Homewood Station.
A version of this release in Spanish can be found here.