CTA to Replace Signal and Train Control Systems on Loop Elevated Lines

January 10, 2007

The Chicago Transit Board today approved a $48.2 million contract to replace the signal and train control systems along the Loop elevated tracks. The new train control system will enhance CTA's ability to operate trains through two junctions where Brown, Orange, Green, Purple and Pink line trains enter and exit the Loop. It will replace a system that is 31 years old.

A new signal and train control system will be installed at the Loop junctions of Van Buren/Wabash and Lake/Wells. These are two of the busiest junctions on CTA's rail system. Approximately 115,000 customers travel through the junction at Lake/Wells on a typical weekday and 79,000 through the junction at Van Buren/Wabash. The new systems will help to improve the reliability of service by regulating train movement, speed and intervals at those junctions.

"These two junctions are critical to reliable Loop elevated service," said CTA President Frank Kruesi. ?With the current aging signal and train control systems at these locations, trains sometimes experience delays waiting to either cross into or out of the Loop. Replacing the older system with state-of-the-art equipment will improve the train traffic efficiency into and out of the Loop."

?Capital improvement projects like this help to upgrade and modernize our aging infrastructure and improve overall service," said Chicago Transit Board Chairman Carole Brown. ?It is essential to CTA operations that we continue our efforts to increase capital funding so we can continue investing in the system and provide the quality of service that our customers deserve."

As part of the Loop project, the current signal system will be replaced with a modern automatic train control signal system and a portion of the bridge control system that operates the Lake and Wells Street bridges also will be upgraded. Signals act as traffic lights along the rail routes directing rail operators to proceed, slow down or stop. Signals also give the operator information regarding track conditions and speed limits.

Work is expected to begin early in 2007 and be completed in 2009. As construction plans are finalized, CTA will provide customers with information related to any impact on rail service.

Divane Brothers Electric Company was selected following a competitive bid process. Funding for the project will come from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) and CTA bonds.

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