The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) will conduct a Blue Line Forest Park Branch Feasibility/Vision Study to assess future needs for the entire branch between the Clinton and Forest Park stations. The study would launch a long-range planning strategy for serving customers with a modernized rail line and could stimulate new economic development for the West Side along the Eisenhower Expressway.
The study will be paid for by a combination of local and federal funds, the latter because of a federal earmark secured by U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL). The analysis is being performed in coordination with the Village of Oak Park, which has contributed local funding to analyze livability issues near Blue Line stations in Oak Park and in Chicago, as well as the IDOT studies in the corridor.
“The Blue Line will play a large role in the future development of the West Side of Chicago and I am pleased that we continue to look for efficiencies and new opportunities to improve service,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
The Blue Line runs through the Eisenhower Corridor “Neighborhoods Now” planning area, in which $186 million in public-private investments are being implemented through a coordinated community improvement plan. Approximately 2,000 new jobs are projected to be created through the initiative, which aims to leverage local transportation assets in support of entertainment and educational opportunities on the Near West Side, among other priorities.
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