Metra, state, and local officials today broke ground on the complete rehabilitation of the 147th Street/Sibley Boulevard Station on the Metra Electric Line in Harvey.
Attendees included Governor JB Pritzker, Congresswoman Robin L. Kelly, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, State Senator Napoleon B. Harris III, State Representative William Davis, Harvey Mayor Christopher J. Clark, RTA Chairman Kirk Dillard, Illinois Transportation Secretary Omer Osman and Metra Executive Director/CEO Jim Derwinski.
The work, which will require the closure of the station for 12 to 15 months starting on May 16, is the first major upgrade to the facility in three decades. For the duration of the project, passengers are advised to use the Ivanhoe Station at 144th Street or the Harvey Station at 154th Street.
“When I proposed the state’s $45 billion Rebuild Illinois capital plan, it was with the direct purpose of modernizing transportation infrastructure like the 147th Street Sibley Metra Station, which had been neglected for far too long,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “This gleaming and accessible new station is just one of the investments our capital plan is bringing to Harvey – and with the doubling of state funding for the city’s local infrastructure projects, residents should expect to see more new sidewalks, bike paths, and other local improvements.”
“Access to public transportation is an essential building block to a healthy community and today’s groundbreaking marks a new day for the city of Harvey,” said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski. “My Metra’s goal is to provide a safe, warm, and welcoming place for all our riders at all our stations. Our investment here will make our service more attractive and easier to use for existing and potential customers.”
“I’m thrilled that work will now begin on the 147th Street/Sibley Boulevard Metra station in Harvey,” said Congresswoman Robin Kelly. “Commuters in the south suburbs deserve a safe, accessible, and well-maintained station. These upgrades will make the station accessible to wheelchair users, provide shelter from the rain and make traveling to and from the station easier than ever. This is yet another example of our collaboration between Illinois and the federal government to invest in the south suburbs.”
“Investment in transit, and making it affordable, is an essential part of addressing congestion on our roads while meeting the travel needs of residents, no matter where you live in Cook County. This is why prioritizing investments in transit is one of my top policy priorities,” said President Toni Preckwinkle. “Station improvements like the ones we're celebrating today at the 147th Street Station represent a vital opportunity to make transit a more viable option for residents and visitors to the neighborhood. Projects like the one we're celebrating today infuse equity into our transit system, improve access to jobs and strengthen our neighborhoods.”
“I am pleased that Metra is continuing its investment in the city of Harvey,” said Rep. William Davis (30th). “Passing and funding Capital Bill legislation in Springfield is important to rebuilding our public transportation infrastructure in communities like Harvey."
“The Rebuild Illinois capital program has been a game changer for our state, allowing projects like the new Harvey station to come to life throughout Illinois,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Omer Osman. “Under the leadership of Gov. Pritzker, IDOT is making investments that ensure residents have safe, reliable and accessible transportation, while also creating economic opportunity in our communities.”
“Better transportation for people of our community means a stronger Harvey,” said Harvey Mayor Christopher J. Clark. “I am excited that our great state and federal governments, as well as Metra, have invested in our community to build a better Harvey.”
The project will replace the station’s existing concrete platform with a longer-lasting composite material. The existing headhouse and passenger shelters will also be replaced, and a canopy covering most of the platform area will be added. The new facility will also include elevator access to the platform, making it accessible to people with disabilities.
The 147th Street project also includes significant improvements at street level, including a new entrance with a covered staircase, converting the gravel parking area near the station entrance to a paved kiss-n-ride and adding bicycle parking. The project will also improve pathways to the main parking lot on the east side of the tracks, and new lighting will be installed on the platform and along the sidewalk under the tracks.
The budget for design and construction is $20 million, with funding from the state’s Rebuild Illinois program, the Federal Transit Administration, and a Cook County Invest in Cook grant.