June 4, 2003

Board Approves Design Contract to Replace Red and Blue Line Subway Escalators

Continuing to upgrade and replace some of the oldest escalators in the CTA system, Chicago Transit Board today approved a $642,569 design contract for the replacement of 10 Loop subway escalators. The design work is the precursor to replacing the aging units with new modern escalators providing added comfort and convenience for CTA subway customers. Construction will take place between September 2004 and May 2006.

"CTA continues to make progress on modernizing its infrastructure and bringing the system to a state of good repair," said CTA President Frank Kruesi. ?Replacing these old escalators with modern, more reliable units is a continuation of efforts to provide CTA customers with the quality transit experience they deserve."

Chicago-based Globetrotters Engineering Corporation was selected to provide architectural and engineering services for the project following a competitive bidding process. Globetrotters Engineering has committed to meet the 30 percent Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) goal by subcontracting to SPAAN Technology, Inc., also based in Chicago.

The escalators pegged for replacement include seven on the Red Line and three on the Blue Line. The Red Line escalators include one each at Harrison and Jackson/Van Buren; two at Adams/Jackson; and three at Monroe/Adams. Blue Line escalators include one each at Randolph/Washington, Madison/Monroe and Jackson/Van Buren.

With 145 escalators on its system, 19 of which remain from their original installation in the 1940s, CTA has embarked on an escalator modernization plan to replace or rehabilitate the older escalators throughout the CTA system. Replacement of the 10 Loop escalators will address break down and repair issues that are typical of 25- to 60-year-old units.

?From a business perspective, investing in new equipment saves on repair andmaintenance costs, but this also is an investment with direct benefits for customers," said Chicago Transit Board Chairman Valerie B. Jarrett. ?Many customers find it difficult to climb stairs and escalators provide convenience and comfort as they travel the CTA system."

CTA began the escalator modernization plan in March with pre-construction work for the rehabilitation of two escalators at North/Clybourn on the Red Line and one escalator at Pulaski/Irving Park on the Blue Line O'Hare Branch. Construction to these escalators will start later this month.

Rehabilitation involves completely stripping an escalator of all parts and replacing it with new or reconditioned parts, keeping only the original outer shell. Decisions on which escalators receive rehab or replacement are based on the age of the escalator, the condition of the escalator and the volume of customers passing through the station.

Escalators in stations going through rehab also get slated for rehab or replacement. Nine escalators at seven stations will be replaced as part of the Dan Ryan Red Line Initiative. Construction will take place from December 2003 to December 2005.

The Regional Transportation Authority and the Federal Transit Administration are providing capital funding for the contract.

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