CTA to Build New Park & Ride on O’Hare Branch of Blue Line

July 29, 2005

Facility Will Generate Additional Revenue, Provide Convenient Travel Option

The Chicago Transit Authority will begin construction next week on a new Park & Ride facility along the O'Hare branch of the Blue Line. Located adjacent to the Harlem station at 5550 N. Harlem Avenue, the additional 53 parking spaces will provide a convenient travel option for CTA customers who wish to combine driving and public transit, as well as generate additional revenue for the CTA.

?We are always looking for new ways to generate revenue," said Chicago Transit Board Chairman Carole Brown. ?This kind of capital improvement project serves the dual purpose of improving the facility for our loyal Park & Ride customers and producing revenue to be used throughout the system."

CTA President Frank Kruesi said, "Park & Ride facilities help expand travel options for commuters who do not live within walking distance of transit. By making transit more convenient for them, we encourage them to make part of their trips with the CTA."

When the new lot opens this fall it will have 53 parking spaces including three spaces designated for customers with disabilities, new signs, a parking pay station area, canopies to protect customers from the elements and improved landscaping. Parking will cost $2.00 per day.

Construction will begin August 1 and last approximately two months. During the first two weeks of construction, the drive in front of the station currently used as a drop off and pick up point to the station will be closed. The drive will re-open in mid-August while the construction on the Park & Ride lot continues.

Chicago-based Old Veteran Construction, Inc. will perform the construction work valued at $75,000. The Federal Transit Administration has provided funding for the project.

The addition of the Blue Line Harlem Park & Ride facility will bring the total number of Park & Ride lots in the CTA system to 18, with a total of 6,289 spaces.

Approximately 2,948 customers use the Harlem station on an average weekday, 1,421 on an average Saturday and 964 on an average Sunday. In 2004, the O'Hare branch of the Blue Line was the CTA's second busiest rail line with a grand total of 36,167,205 rides, while the Red Line was the busiest with 61,104,724 rides.

Blue Line trains serve the Harlem station 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

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