June 24, 1999

The CTA announced today that the Blue Line 'L' Station located at Grand and Milwaukee Avenues will re-open for service on Friday, June 25 at 6:00 a.m., in time for increased access to summer activities.

The new station entrances are located on Halsted Street, north of Grand Avenue and the other is located on Grand Avenue, west of Milwaukee Avenue.

"Identifying and monitoring development of growing markets for public transit is critical to the CTA's mission to link people, jobs and communities," said CTA Chairman Valerie B. Jarrett. "We are constantly assessing our service to be sure that we are providing public transit service where demand exists."

Preparing the new facility included power-washing and painting the mezzanine and platform levels, mounting brighter lighting throughout the station and installing safety tactile edging along the tracks. The escalators and service areas underwent rehabilitation and an automated fare collection system was also installed at this time.

The cost of the rehabilitation is $1.3 million.

The revitalization of Navy Pier, and recent residential and industrial development, is driving the increased need and use of public transportation in the Grand-Illinois corridor. Factors considered in the decision to re-open this station included the ridership potential, the connection with bus routes, and changes in the surrounding community. Since 1992, over 3,000 residential units have been built or are under development within a half mile radius of this station.

"The re-opening of this station will make CTA service more attractive to the residents of the Grand-Illinois corridor. And the summer visitors to this busy area can be introduced to the ease and convenience of the CTA as well," said CTA President Frank Kruesi.

The Grand/Milwaukee Station originally opened in 1951 as part of the Dearborn Subway. Weekend and nighttime service was discontinued in 1982 due to a decrease in ridership. Service was suspended at this station in 1992 as a cost saving measure.

Since that time, residential development in the immediate area has proliferated. Likewise, the successful re-development of Navy Pier has brought more activity to the Grand-Illinois corridor. Grand/Milwaukee will be the closest Blue Line 'L' Station to Navy Pier, with #65 Grand Avenue bus providing a direct connection. In addition, #8 Halsted Street and #56 Milwaukee Avenue bus routes will continue to serve this near North Loop area and can provide additional connections at this station. Bus stops have been relocated around the intersection to better enable connections.

The Grand/Milwaukee opening is part of the CTA's continuing assessment of service needs and improvements. Last fall the CTA reopened six station entrances that were previously closed or used only as exits. In addition to opening two entrances, the Medical Center Station on the Forest Park branch of the Blue Line also became ADA compliant. Entrances at Pulaski Road, East Avenue and Wells/Lake Streets on the branches of the Blue Line, Lunt Avenue on the Red Line and Justine Street on the Green Line were all opened to increase access for customers and provide connections to adjacent communities.

For details about all CTA service, call 836-7000 (all local area codes).

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