Major Reconstruction of CTA Wilson Station Moves Forward

May 3, 2013

CTA seeks general contractor for $203 million project

The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) has issued an Invitation for Bids (IFB) seeking a general contractor for the $203 million reconstruction of the Wilson Red Line station, one of the largest ‘L’ station projects in CTA history. Work is tentatively scheduled to begin this fall and continue through 2016.  

This project will transform Wilson into a reconfigured, accessible station that will offer connections between the Red and Purple lines—the only transfer point on the Red Line between Howard and Belmont. The project will also improve the appearance and pedestrian environment on Broadway and Wilson by removing some ‘L’ structure support columns from streets and sidewalks.

“Rebuilding the Wilson station is a critical component to rejuvenating the Red Line, the backbone of the CTA rail system, and is part of Mayor Emanuel’s Building a New Chicago infrastructure program,” said CTA President Forrest Claypool. “A revitalized Wilson station will strengthen the historic Uptown neighborhood with an attractive, modern station that provides improved transit options and connections for CTA customers and generates new retail and related economic development – similar to the benefits the South Side will gain from the $240 million reconstruction of the 95th Street Terminal that begins next year.”

The contractor selected for the 36-month Wilson project will be responsible the reconstruction of a new stationhouse, construction of two auxiliary entrances and the restoration of the 1923 terra cotta facade and clock tower at the former station entrance located at the northwest corner of Wilson and Broadway. 

Contractor bids will be accepted through mid-June. CTA has set a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise goal of 25 percent for the subcontracting opportunities related to the construction project to encourage diverse businesses to participate in the project. These opportunities include painting, glazing, electrical, plumbing, carpentry, masonry, elevator/escalator, sheet metal and structural/ornamental steel work.

CTA anticipates selecting a contractor bid and submitting it to the Chicago Transit Board for approval in August 2013. Following completion of a project environmental review, CTA could issue a “notice to proceed” to the selected contractor as early as September 2013.

The Wilson Reconstruction project is part of Mayor Emanuel’s Building a New Chicago program, which is updating infrastructure that is critical to the city – and includes improvements that will help CTA continue to serve customers as effectively as possible. Most of the project funding ($170 million) comes from Gov. Quinn’s Illinois Jobs Now! program, with an additional $30 million of funding provided by the Federal Transit Administration and $3 million in tax-increment financing.

Retail and commercial construction next to the Wilson station is a separate project from the station reconstruction project. CTA anticipates issuing a Request for Information for the Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) project in mid-May.  CTA and the City of Chicago will work closely with the Uptown community on future development around the Wilson station.

The Wilson station will remain open throughout the construction project. CTA will make every effort to minimize construction impacts to customers.

More information about the project is available at www.transitchicago.com/wilson.


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