CTA’s Red and Purple Modernization (RPM) Phase One Project’s Final Major Stage of North Belmont Red-Purple Reconstruction to Begin This Fall

September 26, 2023

RPM project to reach next major milestone following completion of new track structure north of Belmont station marking the project being two-thirds complete; community meeting to be held 10/17

The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) today announced the agency will begin this fall the final major stage of the North Belmont Red-Purple Reconstruction project as part of CTA’s Red and Purple Modernization (RPM) Phase One Project. This final stage will mark the next major milestone for the RPM project, completing new elevated track structure north of Belmont station and reaching the two-thirds completion point for this section of the project.

The North Belmont Red-Purple Reconstruction project includes two major components: the new Red-Purple Bypass, which opened in November 2021, and the full reconstruction of the 0.3 miles of southbound track structure north of Belmont station to approximately Newport/Cornelia avenues south of Addison Red Line station. The bypass, along with the new Red and Purple line tracks being finished this fall, allow trains to travel more efficiently with fewer delays, and provide CTA with additional capacity to add trains to meet ridership demand.

“As CTA ridership returns in record numbers nearing pre-pandemic levels, we are pleased to deliver modern track infrastructure to our customers,” said CTA President Dorval R. Carter, Jr. “Combined with the new tracks recently opened between Lawrence and Bryn Mawr earlier this year, we have now built nearly two miles of new tracks under the RPM project. We look forward to continuing to deliver on our promises to modernize the Red Line from north to south.”

Final major stage of North Belmont Red-Purple Reconstruction (fall 2023 through 2025)

With the completion of the bypass and the new southbound Red and Purple line tracks, CTA can move on to the next phase of work. CTA’s RPM project contractor, Walsh-Fluor, will rebuild 0.3 miles of northbound Red and Purple Line elevated track structures between Belmont station on the south to the stretch of track between Newport and Cornelia avenues on the north.

  • Reconstruction of southbound tracks began in late 2021 and will be completed late 2023.
  • Reconstruction of northbound tracks will start late 2023 and is expected to be completed in 2025.

Minor rail service impacts expected in fall 2023

Red, Purple and Brown Line service will be maintained through the end of the project in 2025, with minor interruptions at the time of the new tracks being put into service this fall. During the weekends when rail service is interrupted, CTA will provide free shuttle buses between stations for customers. Upcoming scheduled service* interruptions:

  • Brown Line: Belmont to Southport interrupted Oct. 14-16
  • Red and Purple Line: Belmont to Addison interrupted Oct. 27-30 and Nov. 10-13

*Construction schedules are subject to change.

Community meeting: North Belmont Red-Purple Reconstruction

CTA and Walsh-Fluor hold an in-person public meeting and will also be recorded and posted on our web site. Register for the meeting here.

October 17

Second Unitarian Church of Chicago, 656 W Barry Ave

5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Translation services will be available upon request.

RPM Phase One Overview

RPM Phase One Project includes three major components:

  • Reconstruction of the Lawrence, Argyle, Berwyn, and Bryn Mawr Red Line stations into larger, 100 percent accessible stations; and replacement of track structure totaling six track-miles (ongoing).
  • New Red-Purple Bypass construction (completed in 2021) and the reconstruction of Red and Purple Line track structure between Belmont and Newport/Cornelia (ongoing).
  • Installation of a new signal system on 23 track miles between Howard and Belmont that, similar to roadway traffic signals, will improve train flow and service reliability (ongoing).

The Red Line and RPM

The CTA’s Red Line is CTA’s busiest rail line, historically providing more than 67 million rides a year and serving some of the most densely populated neighborhoods in U.S.

The RPM Program, which will be done in multiple phases, will rebuild the 9.6-mile stretch of Red and Purple Line track structure and stations on the North Side that are a century old. RPM will replace aging infrastructure; increase CTA’s capacity to increase train service as needed; and improve our service for customers with more reliable, comfortable service. Future phases of RPM have not yet been announced and are currently unfunded. For more information on RPM Next Phases, please visit transitchicago.com/rpm/next-phases.

Learn more about RPM online at transitchicago.com/RPM and sign up for project alerts at transitchicago.com/RPMalerts.

Back to news
System status snapshot
‘L’ route status
Red Line
Normal Service
Blue Line
Normal Service
Brown Line
Normal Service
Green Line
Normal Service
Orange Line
Normal Service
Pink Line
Normal Service
Purple Line
Normal Service
Yellow Line
Normal Service
Bus routes w/alerts
Elevator alerts