Mayor Emanuel, CTA Announce the Completed Renovation of Five Blue Line Stations as part of the Your New Blue O’Hare Branch Modernization Program

November 28, 2016

Addison, Irving Park, Montrose, Harlem and Cumberland are five of 14 stations to receive rehabilitation under Your New Blue; Part of system wide investment by Mayor Emanuel, including the largest modernization projects on the Red and Blue Line in history

Mayor Emanuel and CTA President Dorval R. Carter, Jr. today announced that the CTA has completed the renovation of five O’Hare branch CTA stations as part of the historic $492 million Your New Blue modernization project.

The $43 million station modernization effort marks the second phase of the Your New Blue program that included the rehabilitation of the Addison, Irving Park, Montrose, Harlem and Cumberland stations. The renovations also included the installation of an elevator at the Addison station to make that station fully accessible to customers with disabilities.

“Today is an important milestone in our efforts to modernize transit infrastructure in Chicago, and we will continue making these much needed investments across the City to ensure we are providing the safest, most reliable service for commuters,” said Mayor Emanuel. "There are now new tracks, signals and power between the Loop and the northwest side – all of which will make the ride smooth, safe and speedy."

The five-station project follows other completed Your New Blue projects, including track improvement work between Damen to Logan Square, completed in 2014; California, Western and Damen station renovation work, completed in 2014.

“We are pleased to reach the next milestone in the transformational Your New Blue project, our biggest investment in this branch since the Blue Line was extended to O’Hare from Jefferson Park more than 30 years ago,” said CTA President Carter. “The upgrades to these stations, which had a combined 5.5 million station entries last year, will provide a more pleasant customer environment and complement other Blue Line improvements that have enhanced service reliability and customer comfort.”

CTA customers are already experiencing the benefits of these Blue Line station improvements, which included:

  • Addison: New elevator; extended stationhouse and new enclosed stairway; improvements to the platform and platform canopies for better weather protection; refurbished platform furniture (i.e. benches, windbreakers, trash bins, etc.), new lighting; and painting of station and platform.
  • Irving Park and Montrose: Improvements to platform and platform canopies; renovated platform furniture; replaced walkway railings; new lighting and repainted stationhouses and platforms.
  • Harlem: Improvements to platform, platform canopies floors and walkways; repairs to stationhouse curtain walls; rehabilitation of platform furniture; and new lighting and painting.
  • Cumberland: Improvements to platform, platform canopies and walkways; replacement of stationhouse curtain walls and other improvements, including new lighting and painting at the stationhouses, platforms, and walkways; and upgrades to stationhouse and platforms, which includes new lighting and painting.

The announcement today is part of a larger system wide effort to improve transit infrastructure and service across Chicago.

Yesterday, the CTA announced $75 million in funding for the Red Line Extension (RLE) project, a plan to extend Red Line rail service to 130th Street from 95th Street on Chicago’s Far South Side. The 5.3-mile rail extension would include four new stations near 103rd Street, 111th Street, Michigan Avenue, and 130th Street, each of which would include bus and parking facilities.

The project is a key part of Mayor Emanuel and CTA’s “Red Ahead” investment in its busiest rail line that includes the $425 million Red Line South Reconstruction that was completed in 2013 and the ongoing $280 million construction of a new 95th Street Terminal, which will be completed in 2018.

The Mayor also announced a new partnership yesterday that gives transit riders access to Chicago-focused content through the CTA's 4G subway wireless network. The CTA and CPL will be launching a joint marketing campaign in early 2017 to help direct riders to CPL's digital content, which will include e-books by Chicago authors, blog posts written about Chicago or by Chicago authors, as well as other city-focused curated content.

Chicago in 2015 became the first large city in North America to provide free 4G Wireless access in its entire subway system, helping to enhance the commute for CTA customers.

In December 2013, the CTA and Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced Your New Blue, the most ambitious service improvement project on the Blue Line since it was extended to O'Hare Airport in 1984. The program will benefit the more than 80,000 customers who each weekday use stations along the branch, which had more than 27 million rides last year. Your New Blue will update a total of 14 Blue Line stations, make elevated and subway infrastructure upgrades, track signal improvements and traction power upgrades.

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