April 28, 2003

The Loop Tour Train will begin a new season of free Saturday tours around the Loop 'L' on Saturday, May 3, 2003. The train is co-sponsored by the Chicago Architecture Foundation, the Chicago Office of Tourism and the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA).

The Loop Tour Train will travel around the historic 1897 Loop 'L' at midday on Saturdays through September 27. The tours start from the inner Loop station at Randolph/Wabash, with docents from the Chicago Architecture Foundation (CAF) providing commentary. In 2002, 11,402 customers rode the Loop Tour Train, an increase of 15 percent over 2001, and an increase of 36 percent over 2000.

Each tour includes three trips clockwise around the inner Loop 'L' above Wabash, Van Buren, Wells and Lake Streets. Using the train's public address system, guides from the Architecture Foundation provide information about the history of the city and the 'L' and point out buildings of architectural interest.

While tickets for the tours are free, Tour Train riders must pick up the tickets on the day of the tour from the Chicago Office of Tourism Visitor Information Center. The Center is located on the first floor of the Chicago Cultural Center at 77 East Randolph. Tickets are available beginning at 10:00 a.m. From there it is only a few steps to the tour boarding point at the Randolph/Wabash inner Loop station.

Loop Tour Trains will begin their Saturday trips southbound from the Randolph/Wabash 'L' station at 11:35 a.m., 12:15 p.m., 12:55 p.m. and 1:35 p.m. Customers are asked to be on the platform about 15 minutes before the scheduled departure time of their tours. Those needing elevator access can make the appropriate arrangements when they pick up their tickets.

For more information about the Loop Tour Train, call 1-877-CHICAGO, or CTA's Customer Service Hotline at 1-888-YOUR-CTA, or visit the CTA website at www.transitchicago.com.

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