Web_Lockup_Red_Ahead_RPM

Frequently Asked Questions

General

Utility and demolition work

Lawrence-Bryn Mawr Modernization

Red-Purple Bypass

General

What is the RPM Program?

The CTA proposes to rehabilitate and rebuild the Red and Purple lines from just north of Belmont station to Linden station.

Once fully realized, RPM Program could double passenger capacity and bring the rail lines into a state of good repair for the next 60 to 80 years. Improvements made along this area would help bring the existing transit line into a state of good repair, reduce travel times, improve access to job markets and destinations, and provide improved access to people with disabilities.

RPM is part of CTA’s Red Ahead Program, a comprehensive initiative for maintaining, modernizing, and expanding Chicago’s most-traveled rail line. All Red Ahead Projects are mutually beneficial; an improvement in one area of the Red Line benefits the entire line.

Why do the North Red and Purple lines need to be modernized?

Simply put, the Red and Purple lines have reached the end of their useful lifespans. Most tracks and bridges are nearly 100 years old. Continuing to operate two rail lines – one of which is the busiest rail line providing 24/7 service – on this outdated infrastructure results in the need for frequent repairs that disrupt service and slow travel, unusually high maintenance costs, and outdated stations that can’t accommodate modern amenities for all our customers.

This segment of the Red and Purple lines carries more than 20 percent of all CTA rail rides and serves customers in some of the densest neighborhoods in Chicago. Weekday rush period ridership increased nearly 40 percent over a five-year period.

The Red Line needs to expand to serve more riders, yet with current infrastructure constraints it has reached capacity. If nothing is done to add more frequent and longer trains to accommodate more riders, trains will become more crowded and passengers will wait longer.

What is Phase One of the RPM Program?

The first phase of the RPM improvements includes two main components, which together qualify for federal capacity expansion requirements and are necessary to meet future ridership demand:

  1. Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization Project: Completely rebuilding four aging stations: Lawrence, Argyle, Berwyn and Bryn Mawr, including expanding and modernizing the stations with the addition of elevators and other amenities to make each accessible to customers with disabilities and limited mobility.
  2. Red-Purple Bypass Project: Construction of a rail bypass north of the Belmont station to allow the CTA to address the capacity constraint it currently faces because of an outdated rail intersection traveled by three rail lines. The bypass would allow the CTA to add train service as ridership grows and to eliminate delays where the Red, Purple and Brown lines all intersect and trains must stand and wait for other trains to pass. In addition, the project would include replacement of associated Red and Purple line tracks from just north of the Belmont station to the segment of track between Newport and Cornelia Avenues, increasing train speeds and improving passenger comfort with added capacity.

Future phases of RPM would bring the same level of infrastructure and station improvements to the Red and Purple lines from north of the Belmont station to the Linden station in Wilmette.

What is an Environmental Assessment (EA)?

The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) is a federal law that mandates the consideration of environmental impacts that may have significant impacts on the environment or where impacts have not yet been determined – before a project is approved to receive federal funding. The NEPA process provides a decision-making framework to consider the purpose and need for a proposed action, potential design solutions, project costs and relative benefits of the proposed action.

As part of the NEPA process, the CTA is required to conduct an Environmental Assessment (EA), which analyzes, in coordination with the public involvement process, the potential impacts a proposed could have on the community, natural environment and historic resources both during project work (i.e. temporary) and upon completion of work (i.e. long-term). It also provides recommended measures to mitigate these potential impacts.

The EA process includes public input and comment throughout its duration. For RPM Phase One, there is one EA for the Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization Project, and one EA for the Red-Purple Bypass Project. (See Documents.)

Based on a review of the EA and all public comments received, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) issued a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for this project. The FONSI documentation includes responses to comments received as well as suggested mitigation measures to minimize the environmental impacts of the project, including impacts to historic resources.

How were the Phase One projects identified?

CTA considered the entire RPM corridor and looked to identify a package of projects that brought the greatest amount of benefits to Red and Purple line riders, while minimizing impacts on the surrounding communities that rely upon these rail lines for their daily travel needs. The Phase One projects will benefit 88 percent of all current RPM corridor trips – approximately 110,000 trips every weekday. The two projects combined are expected to save customers using the RPM corridor approximately one million hours of travel time a year.

1.  Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization Project:  

  • Approximately 45,000 people live within ½ mile of these stations, which is twice as dense as the average Chicago neighborhood.
  • Over 28,000 trips currently begin or end at the four stations being reconstructed.
  • None of the stations in this segment of the North Red Line are accessible to people with disabilities or those with limited mobility. In fact, this is the largest stretch of the RPM corridor without wheelchair accessible rail facilities.
  • The almost 80,000 trips that currently travel through this segment of track will benefit from the faster service and a smoother ride once the project is complete.
  • The Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization Project will replace 1.3 miles of the most difficult structures to maintain – the 90-year-old embankment walls – and completely rebuild four stations to be modern, spacious and accessible.
  • This project will continue the construction of consistent modern infrastructure from the adjacent Wilson Station Reconstruction Project, which is currently under construction.

 

2. Red-Purple Bypass Project:

  • Existing rush period ridership requires as many trains as Clark Junction capacity allows – demand has grown over the long term and we are at capacity. CTA cannot add any additional service at this time.
  • The almost 150,000 rides every weekday on the Red, Purple and Brown line trains that have to travel through this intersection would benefit from the improved reliability and reduction in delays.
  • The Red-Purple Bypass Project will allow the CTA to meet current and future transit demand needs. By removing this major bottleneck, train speeds can improve, additional service can be added and customers traveling on the Red, Purple and Brown lines can benefit from more reliable service.
  • This project will be the single largest capacity expansion and time savings-element of all the improvements considered in the RPM corridor

 

Why are both components of Phase One needed?

Both projects identified for Phase One of RPM are necessary to complete to meet the goal of adding more rail service capacity to the Red Line as ridership grows.
 

How will my riding experience be improved?

Brand new stations will be constructed and feature a number of new amenities to improve the overall customer experience, including:

  •  New elevators (ADA access)
  • Wider platforms
  • Wider stairwells
  • Additional turnstiles
  • New brighter and additional lighting
  • New signage, including Braille
  • Additional bike parking
  • Longer, modern steel-framed, translucent canopies
  • More benches and windscreens
     

Reconstructed tracks and structures will allow CTA to provide the following improved customer experience:

  • More train service
  • Less crowding as ridership grows
  • More reliable service
  • Shorter wait times
  • Fewer delays
  • Faster speeds
  • Smoother tracks
  • Quieter ride

     

Why is ADA access important?

Improvements made under the guidance of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) will provide access to transit services for people who may have difficulty navigating stairs or require specific audio and/or visual cues. By making these stations fully ADA accessible, we are making sure that all people within the community can access and benefit from public transit services.

How will CTA fund this proposed project?

RPM Phase One will be funded through a combination of federal and local funds including: $957 in federal Core Capacity funds (FTA); a federal $125 million Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) grant from the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP); $622 million in Transit TIF funds from the City of Chicago; and CTA financing.

CTA anticipates future phases of RPM to be funded through a mix of federal, state and local funds.

Will CTA need to acquire private property for these projects?

Some private commercial and residential properties are required to construct portions of the RPM Phase One improvements. Properties are required to expand station platforms, remove slow and unnecessary curves in the tracks and to construct the Red-Purple Bypass infrastructure.

Many large transit infrastructure projects like the RPM Phase One require property acquisitions. In 2008, for instance, CTA acquired approximately 100 properties in order to rebuild and add capacity to the Brown Line, a project which brought significant station improvements and added train capacity that CTA customers enjoy today.

For the RPM Program, CTA considered many possible alternatives before determining which properties may be necessary for Phase One. CTA used innovative engineering techniques during the development of the projects to reduce neighboring property impacts as much as possible, including implementing alley-spanning structures and adjusting platform widths and positions.

To mitigate the impact of acquisition, property owners are protected by the federal Uniform Act on relocation assistance and property acquisition. Property owners would be paid not less than fair market value for their land and buildings. In some circumstances, if current appraisals are less than the original property purchase price, an owner may be eligible for compensation equal to the original purchase price. In addition, CTA must provide financial assistance and relocation services for property owners as well as commercial and residential tenants who must move because of the RPM Program.

More information about specific properties required for RPM Phase One

Will stations be permanently closed or consolidated during this project?

There will be no permanent closures or consolidation of the four stations contained in Phase One of the RPM Project. During construction, CTA anticipates there will be temporary station closures, but will add more frequent bus service and other measures to provide additional transit options to customers.

How would construction impact my neighborhood?

Temporary street closures may be required as part of the construction process in order for construction crews to be effective and efficient, while also providing a safe working environment for both the crews and local residents and their property. If street closures are required, CTA would coordinate with residents and businesses to ensure continued access to property. Contractors will be required to provide off-street parking for construction workers to maintain on-street parking availability.

How will construction impact local businesses?

During construction, CTA is committed to restricting construction parking, implementing dust control measures, and developing a construction outreach and coordination plan to assist local businesses and residences affected by construction.

Will there be financial assistance for businesses that are affected by construction?

A modernized transit system is good for local businesses, bringing customers into storefronts and encouraging new development and investment in neighborhoods. However, the actual work to modernize our rail structure does require us to work closely to businesses in the RPM Phase One project footprint, and will have temporary impacts on those businesses.

CTA is already working closely with businesses in the Phase One Project footprint, in both the Red-Purple Bypass area and the Lawrence to Bryn Mawr area, by talking with them about the project and potential impacts and listening to their concerns. CTA intends to launch initiatives that will promote and advertise local businesses during construction, and working closely with the project’s design-build contractor to create a construction plan that minimizes impacts to businesses. That contractor is expected to be selected by the end of 2018.

The project funds CTA is utilizing to construct the RPM Phase One Project are not permitted to be used to provide financial support to private businesses. At this time, CTA is not aware of any outside funding sources for local businesses during construction.

Will residents be provided tax relief during construction?

We understand that residents living in the project’s footprint will occasionally be affected by construction activities, including temporary street and alley closures, noise and more. During construction, we will coordinate closely with the project’s design-build contractor to mitigate impacts of construction on local residents and their daily lives, including parking, garbage pickup, etc.

We continue to meet regularly with resident groups, from condo buildings to residents on city blocks, to explain the project and listen to their concerns, which will help us develop plans to support residents during construction.

The project funds CTA is utilizing to construct the RPM Phase One Project are not permitted to be used to provide tax relief to private individuals or businesses. At this time, CTA is not aware of any outside funding sources for tax relief during construction.

What is the impact going to be for residents that reside directly next to the area of construction?  

There will be impacts during construction, including temporary closures of alleys, streets, sidewalks and parking and station closures. There will also be noise, dust and truck traffic.

During construction, we will coordinate closely with the project’s design-build contractor to mitigate impacts of construction on local residents and their daily lives and ensure access to services including garbage pickup and parking.

Will we lose access to our alley and our garage/covered parking area and, if so, how long?

Alley closures will be required for the project. Short duration, partial alley closures will occur for utility relocation in 2018 through mid-2019, with longer duration closures required beginning late 2019 during the station and track reconstruction work.

The design-build contractor, expected to be selected by the end of 2018, will be responsible for providing alternative parking when an alley is closed. The exact timing of closures won’t be known until the contractor is selected and a construction plan has been developed.  Further information will be provided when available to the affected communities.

Is there a timeline for when the work will happen?

Once the design-build contractor is selected (expected at the end of 2018), that team will develop a design for the project as well as a construction plan and project timeline. CTA will share more information on the timeline as it is developed. Below is the expected timeline for the project:

Spring 2018                            Some property demolition completed

Summer 2018                         Utility relocation work begins

Fall 2018                                 Property demolition to occur

December 2018                      CTA selects contractor to design and build RPM Phase One project

2019                                        Project engineering and design work occurs

Summer 2019                         Advance utility relocation complete

Late 2019                                Major project construction begins

2020-2021                               Lawrence, Berwyn temporary station closures begin

2025                                        Construction estimated to be completed

What are the noise impacts during construction and after construction?

During construction, noise from construction machinery can be expected. Pile driving is not expected on this project. The contractor will have specifications requiring “best practices” to limit construction noise. Following construction, noise levels are projected to be appreciably less than existing. The new structure will include noise barriers and other features (much like the structure crossing Belmont Avenue now) to substantially decrease noise levels.

Will construction workers park in my neighborhood?

Construction specifications will require the contractor to provide off-street parking for construction workers so that on-street parking will remain available for access to businesses and neighborhood parking. There will be some on-street parking impacts in the vicinity of the rail line due to construction activities.

What is the estimated project timeline?

The RPM Program is scheduled to be completed in phases. Phasing effectively allows CTA to make the greatest amount of improvements to the Red and Purple lines while minimizing impacts on the surrounding community, which relies upon these rail lines for their daily travel needs. The first phase of the RPM improvements would include two main components: the Red-Purple Bypass Project, and the Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization Project. CTA anticipates awarding a contract to design and build Phase One by the end of 2018 and beginning major project construction in the second half of 2019. The project is expected to be completed in 2025.

How is the CTA selecting contractors to build this project?

In June 2017, CTA began the comprehensive process of seeking the most qualified design and construction firms in the industry to design and build Phase One of RPM. As part of a two-step procurement process, the CTA issued a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) to select the most qualified contracting teams that can demonstrate the ability to design and build RPM Phase One. CTA finalized the short list of candidates in December 2017 and has asked  to submit proposals on how they propose designing and building RPM Phase One through a Request for Proposals (RFP) process. The CTA anticipates selecting a contracting team by the end of 2018.

Why isn’t the Sheridan Red Line station part of Phase One?

The Red and Purple Modernization (RPM) Program will be completed in phases, which allows us to make the greatest number of improvements while also minimizing impacts on riders and the surrounding communities. The current phase is RPM Phase One.

The Future RPM Program will tackle the needs of Sheridan station, including providing ADA access. Work on the Future RPM Program began in 2009 as part of the Vision Study; however, extensive analysis, planning, public outreach, and design will be necessary to further develop a blueprint for implementing the Future RPM Program. Phases of the Future RPM Program will be developed through a series of studies and public outreach processes. CTA anticipates that the Future RPM Program will be funded through a mix of federal, state, and local funds, pending funding availability.

When will future phases of RPM be built?

The Red and Purple Modernization (RPM) Program is a  multi-stage project to  allow us to make the greatest number of improvements while minimizing impacts on riders and the surrounding communities.

Extensive analysis, planning, public outreach, and design will be required to further develop a blueprint for implementing the Future RPM Program. Phases of the Future RPM Program will be developed through a series of studies and public outreach processes. CTA anticipates that the Future RPM Program will be funded through a mix of federal, state, and local funds, pending funding availability.

What is the estimated timeline when Purple Line stations will be renovated?

The Red and Purple Modernization (RPM) Program is a  multi-stage project to be completed in phases, which allows us to make the greatest number of improvements while also minimizing impacts on riders and the surrounding communities.

Currently, future phases of RPM include the reconstruction of all Purple Line stations between Howard and Linden, including making all stations fully accessible. Extensive analysis, planning, public outreach, and design will be required to further develop a blueprint for implementing the Future RPM Program. Phases of the Future RPM Program will be developed through a series of studies and public outreach processes.

How can I receive updates and stay involved throughout the entire process?

Anyone can request to be added to the RPM contact list by sending an email to RPM@transitchicago.com. Members of the contact list will receive upcoming meeting notices, as well as future updates about the RPM Program and Phase One projects. Information about the RPM Program is also available on this project website.

If you are part of a community group that would like to learn more about the RPM Phase One projects, please send information about your organization and your upcoming meeting dates to us at RPM@transitchicago.com.

Utility and demolition work

When are properties being demolished and what are the impacts?

To proceed with Phase One of the Red and Purple Modernization Program (RPM), CTA identified a small number of properties necessary to acquire and demolish to build the project. CTA in Spring 2018 demolished 10 properties in the Red-Purple Bypass area of the project in Lakeview, and will demolish the remaining four properties in that area this fall, after the conclusion of the Chicago Cubs season. In Summer/Fall 2018, CTA will also demolish one property in the Lawrence to Bryn Mawr project area adjacent to its tracks on Bryn Mawr Avenue. Expected impacts include construction equipment, noise, dust, temporary street/alley/sidewalk closures, temporary construction fencing anticipated. CTA will continue to make extensive effort to mitigate impacts of demolition work, including performing dust mitigation and debris removal as well as implementing a comprehensive pest abatement program.

What is advance utility relocation work, why is it necessary, and how does it affect me?

An important part of the preparation necessary to build RPM Phase One is the relocation of utility lines, which began in Summer 2018, ahead of major project construction beginning in late 2019. Advancing this utility relocation ahead of major construction activities will allow for a more efficient and streamlined construction effort.

Utility relocation work will be performed in both of the Phase One project areas: Red-Purple Bypass and Lawrence to Bryn Mawr. The work includes relocating overhead power and communications lines underground and installing shorter power poles, all necessary to make room for new track structure that will be constructed.

Temporary alley and street closures will occasionally be necessary. CTA is working closely with utility providers, which are performing the actual utility relocation work on CTA’s behalf, to minimize service disruptions and provide ample notice to local communities of the work via Construction Activity Notices (CANs) posted in the affected communities and provided to local aldermen. 

Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization

Will there be rail service disruptions or station closures during construction?

While rebuilding the stations and tracks, CTA plans to maintain service along the entire length of the Red Line. CTA anticipates completing reconstruction work in two stages, with temporary station closures, and alternating two-track service. Two stations would be open in the four station corridor during both stages of construction.

To reduce impacts, CTA would:

  • Complement existing bus routes with bus shuttles, as necessary
  • Notify customers of any changes in service
  • Continue to perform engineering studies with the goal of reducing construction impacts

 

What will the new stations and support structures look like?

The current structure is nearly 100 years old, and near the end of its useful lifespan. These structures will be modernized to meet all Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) clearance standards, and portions of the embankment will be removed near station areas to create improved sightlines. Further design will determine how much of the embankment will need to be removed. A new structure is needed to construct wider platforms and expand over the alleys in order to minimize building impacts. The below images show concepts of how the support structures and new stations could look.

With wider platforms and more frequent trains should neighbors expect an increase in noise?

Where tracks are modernized, noise levels would be similar to today, and in some areas, quieter because of improved technologies and construction methods aimed at reducing noise, such as continuous welded rail, closed deck structure and noise barriers along both sides of the track.

How is this different than the recent station rehabs?

As part of Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization, CTA will tear down and rebuild entire stations from the ground up. This is different from recent station rehab projects, which involved replacing platforms and canopies, new paint, new lighting, etc. but otherwise reused the existing station structure. In addition, this approach will allow for the entire track structure between stations to be torn down and replaced.

Why did CTA perform the station rehabs if it was only planning to tear the stations down in the next few years?

The interim improvements made in 2013 were necessary because we could no longer postpone repairs that needed our immediate attention. We wanted to be good stewards of the existing infrastructure, as we continue to plan for the implementation of the RPM project, in phases.

What’s happening with the public artwork that was recently installed?

The interim repairs and rehab work performed in 2013 at the seven North Red Line stations – Jarvis, Morse, Granville, Thorndale, Berwyn, Argyle and Lawrence –was intended to help extend the life of the facilities and bring them to state of good repair as we continued planning for the RPM project. When commissioning this new public artwork, we understood there was a very good chance that these stations would eventually need to be rebuilt from the ground up, which is why steps were taken to ensure the artwork could be re-installed in a new facility.

How will the historic stations be treated during the reconstruction?

Even through the stations will be completely reconstructed, the architecture will recognize that several of the stations are in historic districts. At Argyle and Bryn Mawr stations in particular, the portion of the station house facing the street will be in keeping with the districts. The scale of the station house, the spacing of windows and doors, and potentially preservation of prairie-style columns will be considered at these two stations.

Could CTA simply install an elevator to modernize the stations?

CTA has developed conceptual designs that would allow for installation of elevators in stations without widening right-of-way, but the designs would result in a station similar to the Granville and Loyola station configurations today, with long narrow walkways and tight clearances.

What ADA changes would be made to stations as part of the Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization Project?

The four stations included in the Lawrence to Bryn Mawr Modernization Project (Lawrence, Argyle, Berwyn, and Bryn Mawr) are not currently ADA accessible and have limited accessibility for the elderly, people with disabilities, and people with children and strollers. These stations have also been identified by the CTA’s Infrastructure Accessibility Task Force as the highest priority stations in the RPM corridor. As part of RPM Phase One, these four stations would receive elevators and other amenities such as improved and braille signage; visual and audible way-finding; improved lighting in and around stationhouses; firmer, more defined surfaces; and improved weather protection for customers on sidewalks and platforms in addition to the elevator access provisions.

How can I receive updates and stay involved throughout the entire process?

Anyone can request to be added to the RPM contact list by sending an email to RPM@transitchicago.com. Members of the contact list will receive upcoming meeting notices, as well as future updates about the RPM Program and Phase One projects. Information about the RPM Program is also available on the project website.

 

Red-Purple Bypass Project

Is the purpose of the Red-Purple Bypass to just reduce short train delays?

The Bypass is absolutely necessary if the Red Line is going to continue to grow to serve more riders. The delays are the symptom of a larger problem: a bottleneck of trains that must stop and wait at the rail junction where Red, Purple and Brown Line tracks intersect.

If CTA tried to add more trains on the Red Line, this bottleneck would cause even longer delays and trains would continue to back up. Because of this intersection alone, CTA can no longer add more trains during rush periods when they are desperately needed. If the bottleneck isn’t corrected now, the CTA won’t be able to meet ridership demands. Trains will become more crowded and more cars will clog our streets.

Building the Bypass will unclog traffic at this intersection, allowing CTA to add up to eight more Red Line trains and ultimately serve 7,200 more riders per hour. The Red-Purple Bypass is critically important to CTA as we modernize our rail system for the next 60 to 80 years.

Has the CTA fully explored other alternatives to the Bypass to add capacity to the system?

Yes, our engineers have examined many alternative options, but none are adequate solutions. Here’s why:

 

Alternative Considered

Reasons for Concern

Build a tunnel

Construction of a tunnel would require a massive open pit in the center of Lakeview to accommodate equipment and materials. The building displacements and neighborhood disruption of tunnel construction would be far more severe than the Bypass.

Operate extra trains between Belmont and the Loop

Running more trains only between Belmont and the Loop would require an extra turn-around track to be built north of Belmont Station. This would have nearly as many property acquisition impacts as the Bypass, and most importantly, would still not address the capacity increases needed along the entire length of the Red Line.

Lengthen the platform at Belmont station

Some have suggested CTA lengthen the platform at Belmont station to allow CTA to operate 10-car trains instead of 8-car trains. Lengthening the platform at Belmont station alone would not allow 10-car trains to operate along the entire length of the Red Line. In order to run 10-car trains, ALL platforms at ALL Red Line stations would need to be lengthened – and that would still not address the bottleneck issue north of Belmont station where Brown, Red and Purple Line tracks intersect.

Signal Improvements

CTA is currently designing an upgraded signal system for the RPM corridor as part of this project. However, without removing the bottleneck at this rail junction, only minimal improvements are possible (estimated that at most, one additional train per hour could be added, compared to the eight additional trains per hour the bypass alone would allow). The reason signaling alone is not a solution, is that by definition, two trains can’t be in the same spot at the same time. When the Brown Line crosses a Red Line track, no Red Lines can be on the section of track.

 

What will the Bypass look like?

We have not finalized project plans and no design has been chosen yet. CTA has simply produced two conceptual renderings of potential structure types, in order to gather public comment: one showed a tube structure and another showed a basic structure. We heard preferences for both and will take comments into account as the designs are developed and refined throughout the engineering process.

Conceptual YouTube videos: Bypass at Street Level, Bypass at Track Level

How high will the Bypass be? Will it be the highest point on the CTA rail system?

The crest of the Bypass, between School Street and Clark Street, will be approximately 22 feet higher than the existing track (about 45 feet above ground level, or roughly the height of a four-story building). This height will be only at the crest, just long enough to clear the Red Line, and then it will slope back to the existing height of the Brown Line track structure. This will not be the highest point in the CTA rail system, nor will it be the highest structure in the neighborhood, as multiple nearby buildings are substantially taller.

Will the land on the west side of Wilton Avenue at Belmont be available for redevelopment?

Following construction of the Bypass project, the land east of the tracks along Wilton Avenue will be made available for redevelopment. The minimum lot depth following construction will be 40 feet, which is sufficient for various types of development.

Do CTA renderings of new buildings to be built depict viable options?

CTA committed to developing a Neighborhood Redevelopment Plan for the project area to encourage redevelopment or plans for parcels remaining after construction.To provide context for the new construction, CTA developed conceptual renderings of what redevelopment might look like. These images included several different buildings, all of which are feasible based on the lot sizes available after construction of the new rail lines and that have been guided significantly by community input. CTA anticipates publishing that plan in Summer 2018.

How will the project impact traffic with events at Wrigley Field?

Construction would have very minimal impact to the Addison Red Line station but will intermittently impact streets south of Wrigley Field, such as Clark and Sheffield at Roscoe. Impacts will be temporary, related to the placement of foundations and overhead beams. To the extent possible, necessary street closures would not take place on peak attendance game days.

How will the Vautravers building be impacted?

The Vautravers building, located at 947-949 W. Newport Avenue is part of the Newport Avenue District, a designated Chicago Landmark. This building stands directly in the path of the proposed alignment for the Red and Purple lines north of Belmont station. Rather than raze the building, CTA is proposing to relocate this building out of the path of the new alignment. Moving the building is subject to further structural investigation, but CTA’s preferred course of action is to move the building in order to preserve the historic integrity of the Newport Avenue District.

How will CTA relocate the Vautravers building without damaging it?

Preservation and relocation of the historic Vautravers building is a priority for CTA, which has acquired the building and is now vacant. In order to construct the Red-Purple Bypass and make additional track structure improvements,the CTA proposes relocating the building from 947-949 W. Newport Avenue further west towards Clark Street.

CTA’s preliminary engineering for Phase One determined it appeared possible to move the building without compromising its structural integrity, but ultimately the contracting team that is selected to design and build the project will conduct a final feasibility analysis of how to move the building as a part of their construction plan. The CTA is coordinating closely with the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (SCHP), State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), Historic Preservation Division of the City of Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development (DPD) and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA).

How will CTA handle the empty lots caused by property acquisitions?

CTA, in coordination with the alderman’s office and the Chicago Department of Planning and Development, will prepare a Neighborhood Redevelopment Plan to encourage redevelopment or plans for parcels remaining after construction.

In 2015, CTA received $1.25 million in funding for the plan through FTA’s Transit-Oriented Development Pilot Planning Program. CTA has committed to developing a Neighborhood Redevelopment Plan for the project area to encourage redevelopment or plans for parcels remaining after construction and publishing a plan that has been guided significantly by community feedback in Summer 2018.

What is the long term plan for the space beneath the new elevated track sections?

Generally, the space directly beneath the new aerial tracks is kept open for future inspection and maintenance of the structure. As part of preparing the Neighborhood Redevelopment Plan, the CTA will work the alderman’s office and city officials to determine future uses of this space following the completion of project work, which could be used for parking, realigning alleyways, etc.

How can I receive updates and stay involved throughout the entire process?

Anyone can request to be added to the RPM contact list by sending an email to RPM@transitchicago.com. Members of the contact list will receive upcoming meeting notices, as well as future updates about the RPM Program and Phase One projects. Information about the RPM Program is also available on the project website.

 

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