CTA to Upgrade Three Substations to Improve Service and Reliability

February 8, 2017

The Chicago Transit Board today approved a contract to upgrade three substations that provide power to all eight of CTA’s rail lines. The East Lake, Milwaukee and Illinois substations will be modernized to improve service and reliability for customers by upgrading the traction power equipment that helps move trains across the system.

“This investment will improve service reliability for rail customers by upgrading three substations that are decades old,” said CTA President Dorval R. Carter. “These investments in aging infrastructure are critical to our goal of a 21st century transit system."

The Board awarded the $42.9 million contract to Clark Construction Group. All three substations will receive improvements to the traction power equipment that helps move trains across the system. The substations date back as far as 1910 and the upgrades will further improve the reliability of service.

These upgrades are critical because substations convert electric power to the appropriate voltage, type and frequency so that it can supply CTA’s railways with traction. With 64 substations throughout the system, CTA works diligently to ensure these structures are properly maintained to keep trains running properly.

The investment is funded by Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) Bonds and is expected to be completed in spring 2020.

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