September 15, 1999

The Chicago Transit Board, at its monthly meeting, approved a contract that will bring a series of improvements to four CTA rail stations mainly along the Green Line and one Blue Line O'Hare Branch station.

These improvements include construction, rehabilitation and enhancement of station facilities to make them more attractive, convenient and accessible to customers with disabilities.

"By continuing to reinvest in our infrastructure and facilities, our goal is to persuade new customers to try our transit system," said CTA Board Chairman Valerie B. Jarrett. "These improvements will reinforce other successful initiatives aimed at meeting the needs of our customers and our dedication to making our system accessible to everyone."

Under this contract, improvements to the four Green Line stations include making them compliant with the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). The Indiana station on the South Side will receive a new station house with elevators, additional audio-visual signs and ADA graphics for the visually impaired. The Pulaski station on the West Side will be improved with elevators that carry customers from the street level to the platforms, similar to those in place at the Kedzie and California Green Line stations. The improvements to the Garfield station on the South Side also include a new station house with elevators and an escalator, tactile edging, audio-visual signs and ADA graphics for the visually impaired.

The historic Homan station house will be relocated to Conservatory Drive where a new station will be built to serve the community and visitors to the Garfield Park Conservatory. The structure will be restored and rebuilt with all the modern amenities and in the same architectural style as the Ashland Green Line station. These amenities include elevators, tactile edging, an ADA graphics package and audio-visual signs that alert customers when trains are approaching.

The historic Blue Line Western station along the O'Hare Branch will be dismantled, restored and rebuilt. The reconstructed station will be fully accessible and will meet all ADA requirements with features such as those listed above.

This project was competitively bid and the Walsh Construction Company of Chicago was the lowest responsive and responsible bidder. They will carry out the $36.8 million station improvement contract with 30% DBE participation of minority and female contractors and suppliers.

Construction is expected to begin within 60 days from a final contract and should be completed within 16 months. Upon completion of this station improvement project, 95% of the CTA rail stations designated to be made ADA-compliant under an agreement with the Federal Transportation Administration, will have been completed.

CTA President Frank Kruesi said, "The ability to rebuild our transit system directly affects the quality of service we offer our customers and I'm pleased to be able to move ahead with these station improvements. This investment in our system, together with the commitment by our staff to provide on-time, clean, safe and friendly service allows us to better meet our service demands."

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