As riders return to the weekday commute and construction activity ramps up, Metra will be significantly expanding the weekday schedule on its UP Northwest (UP-NW) Line and making some minor modifications to its UP North Line (UP-N) schedule. The new schedules will take effect Monday, April 25.
“We have said since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic that Metra is committed to adjusting its schedules to meet growing ridership and our riders’ changing needs,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski. “We are greatly encouraged by the growth in ridership so far this year and we are happy to be welcoming returning riders and new ones to My Metra.”
The new UP-NW schedule will increase weekday service by 21 trains, to 66 trains from 45. As with Metra’s other recent schedule revisions, the new UP-NW schedule offers more consistent service patterns and departure times, making the schedule easier for customers to understand and memorize. Most midday trains will now arrive in Chicago on the 10s, allowing better connections with other UP lines.
The new schedule also divides rush-period service into a three-zone pattern that will better balance passenger loads and allow Metra to improve express service to stations farthest from Chicago. The schedule has also been adjusted to better accommodate customers with early shifts and reverse commutes, with the first train arriving downtown Chicago at 5:32 a.m. and the first train departing Chicago at 5:05 a.m. Reverse commuters will now have six outbound trains departing before 9 a.m.
On the UP North, the schedule is being adjusted to add one more morning departure from and one more evening train to Kenosha. Train 310 will now depart Kenosha at 6:38 a.m. In the evening, Train 351, the 4:32 p.m. departure from Chicago, will provide service to Kenosha arriving at 6:02 p.m.
Construction projects that are expected to be ongoing for several years, including the new station at Peterson/Ridge in Chicago, necessitate a slight reduction of UP-N service during middays to lengthen work windows and reduce delays through single-track areas. In the midday, inner-zone trains that departed from Winnetka at 10:09 a.m. and 2:09 p.m. and two outbound trains that departed Chicago for Winnetka at 9:02 a.m. and 1:02 p.m. will be removed from the schedule. This will result in hourly service on the line during those periods.
Click on the following links for the new schedules: UP-NW and UP-N. All customers are encouraged to review the new schedules to determine if their current trains are affected or if new trains better meet their needs. Metra will monitor customer feedback and operations and make future schedule adjustments as necessary.