Rail

Chicago transit to equip subways with 4G

Posted on October 4, 2013

The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) is seeking wireless telecommunications companies to upgrade the existing wireless network to 4G technology.

This initiative is one of several efforts by Mayor Rahm Emanuel and CTA President Forrest Claypool to modernize infrastructure and make the CTA a world-class transit system.

“Chicago’s world-class transit system continues to improve, including upgrading technology for the safety and comfort of the millions who commute by bus and train every week,” said Mayor Emanuel. “I am completely committed to investing in all aspects of our public transportation infrastructure, from rails to stations to wireless access, which will encourage ridership growth and economic opportunity.”

RELATED: "Amtrak upgrades wireless service"

The upgraded subway wireless network will improve the customer experience by offering better and more robust services capable of supporting tablets and smartphone capabilities, and it will also address system safety by providing more reliable communication between CTA personnel and emergency responders.  

The existing infrastructure dates back to 2005 and is beyond its useful life in that it only supports voice services and has limited data-support capabilities.

Under the project, the current wireless network would remain operational while upgrades are made. To keep upgrade costs down, the selected wireless telecommunication provider will need to utilize existing infrastructure materials — such as fiber optics, power sources and hardware equipment — whenever possible.

“This infrastructure was pioneering for the transit industry when it was installed, and through this upgrade initiative, CTA looks to lead the industry once more by offering a fully-operational, 4G network across all major wireless service providers,” said CTA President Forrest Claypool.

CTA has 12 miles of underground subway, or 24 miles of individual tunnels, on the Blue and Red Lines. Additionally, the subway system includes multiple underground passageways connecting rail lines and providing access to nearby buildings. The agency currently owns and leases its subway cellular network to six major wireless service providers, which generates approximately $1.8 million in non-farebox revenue for the agency annually.

Project costs will be determined after proposals are received from qualified vendors. The project will be funded through CTA’s annual capital program. CTA expects to continue to receive revenue from the wireless providers as it does today.

RELATED: "Mayor: Transit key to Chicago's economic edge"

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Siemens consortium to deliver 22 trains to Bangkok

Delivery of the first metro trains is scheduled in 2018, and the order will be completed in the following year.

Sacramento RT considering closing light rail line indefinitely

The agency opened its $44 million Green Line only four years ago; however, the line currently averages only 440 boardings a day with limited service, and costs RT $330,000 annually to operate.

L.A. Metro celebrates launch of Expo Line to Santa Monica

The 6.6-mile Expo extension runs from Culver City to Santa Monica and includes seven stations. Ridership on the new portion is projected to total 18,000 to 20,000 weekday boardings after the first year of service. The travel time from downtown L.A. to the Downtown Santa Monica Station is 48 minutes.

Metra expands undercover train observation team

Agency has doubled its team of employees tasked with riding its trains to observe and report on conductor and ticket agent performance, onboard and station amenities and customer interactions.  

NTSB: Amtrak engineer’s loss of situational awareness led to derailment

The Washington-to-New York City passenger train, Amtrak 188, was traveling at 106 mph around a curve in Philadelphia when it derailed May 12, 2015. Eight passengers were killed and more than 180 others were sent to area hospitals, some with critical injuries.

See More News

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment

TruckingInfo.com

THE COMMERCIAL TRUCK INDUSTRY’S MOST IN-DEPTH INFORMATION SOURCE

Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

LCT Magazine

Global Resource For Limousine and Bus Transportation

Please sign in or register to .    Close