CTA to Begin Next Phase of Major Wilson Station Reconstruction Project on March 21

March 14, 2016

Transformational project is now one-third complete;

Phase 2 to have minimal customer impacts, with southbound Red and Purple Express trains to share a southbound track in A.M. and southbound customers using new, modern platform

The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) is starting the next major phase of the Wilson Station Reconstruction Project on March 21. The project, which began in late 2014, is one-third complete and customers can see the significant transformation happening at Wilson.

Announced by Mayor Rahm Emanuel in 2012, the $203 million project is completely reconstructing the Wilson station and the station’s more than 100-year-old track structure, creating a new transfer point between the Red and Purple Lines.

“We’re pleased to make great progress in delivering a modern, accessible and spacious Wilson station and brand new track structure that will provide a more comfortable, reliable ride for customers,” said CTA President Dorval R. Carter, Jr. “This work is generating good jobs and will serve as a catalyst for economic development for the Uptown neighborhood.”

Red and Purple Line Express service will continue during this construction phase and the Wilson station will continue to remain open. In the morning weekday rush periods only, Red and Purple Line Express trains will share one southbound track, as they have since early 2015.

Customers will see the following improvements and temporary changes for the duration of Phase 2, starting March 21:

Red Line

  • Service level, frequency and travel times will remain the same.

Purple Line Express

  • Service level, frequency and travel times will remain the same.
  • Southbound trains will continue to make stops at Wilson and Sheridan during morning rush only.
  • Purple Line Express trains will no longer stop at Addison during morning rush periods.

Wilson station

The number of entrances available to customers at Wilson will be doubled to increase customer convenience during the construction period.

  • Existing entrance on Broadway stays open.
  • Existing auxiliary entrance on south side of Wilson Avenue remains open.
  • New temporary entrance opens on north side of Wilson Avenue.
  • New temporary entrance opens on south side of Wilson Avenue, just west of existing auxiliary entrance; will be staffed with CTA customer assistant.

Southbound Red and Purple Line Express customers will begin using a brand new, noticeably modern and larger platform:

  • The southbound platform will be separate from the northbound platform and is most easily accessed via the new temporary entrances on Wilson.
  • A temporary enclosed pedestrian bridge will connect the northbound to the southbound platforms for customers making transfers.
  • New security cameras and lighting are being installed at the temporary entrances and exits.

Northbound customers will use existing platform, best accessed via the main Wilson entrances.

The project’s second phase will occasionally require some temporary street closures and parking restrictions near the elevated structure. The CTA will work to minimize impacts on commuters and the neighborhood as much as possible, and will continue to work closely with local aldermen to finalize details and provide advance notice of impacts to sidewalks, streets and alleys. Phase 2 is expected to be completed this fall.

The $203 million Wilson project is part of more than $5 billion of transit improvements announced by Mayor Emanuel since taking office in 2011, including projects to build new rail stations and modernize others, purchase new buses and rail cars, and continue investments in technology to benefit customers and provide a better commuting experience. It is also one of the largest station projects in CTA history and is the latest in a series of Red Line modernization projects to take place since 2011.

When the project is complete in late 2017, riders will have a modern, spacious and more accessible station that will be a new transfer point for Red and Purple Line Express trains. About 2,200 feet of elevated tracks, signals and supporting infrastructure will also be relocated and reconstructed, eliminating slow zones and improving service reliability for customers, as well as providing a more pleasing street environment along Wilson Avenue and Broadway in the heart of Uptown.

The revitalized station will serve as an economic anchor for the historic Uptown neighborhood by stimulating local business and promoting job growth.

For more information about the Wilson project, visit transitchicago.com/wilson.

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