Speeding up trains, reducing traffic delays: Officials break ground on the Forest Hill Flyover

CHICAGO — More than 120 trains cross paths daily in Chicago’s Forest Hill neighborhood. It’s the most congested rail chokepoint in the Chicago Terminal, Belt Junction, however that’s all about to alter.

Several native, state, and federal officers are set to participate in a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday for, “the largest construction project to date undertaken by the Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency (CREATE) program,” in line with a press launch from Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle’s office.

The occasion is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. and can embody Preckwinkle, Gov. JB Pritzker, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, and others.

The ceremony might be livestreamed in its entirety by means of this story starting at roughly 10:30 a.m.

The Forest Hill Flyover is only one of 4 main tasks, and a slate of different enhancements, wrapped into the 75th Street Corridor Improvement Project. First proposed in 2018, it’s gone by means of a number of design phases and has now entered the building part. The current projected timeline has building working by means of 2025.

According to the CREATE website, the advantages of the new rail flyover will embody:

It will remove battle between 30 SouthWest Service Metra trains and 35 freight trains working on the Western Avenue Corridor (CSX). The building of an extra important line for Metra operation and the rail-rail flyover connection will cut back congestion and freight conflicts and can join Metra’s SouthWest Service with the present Rock Island District tracks, rising capability and enhancing reliability.

This project will enable SouthWest Service trains entry to LaSalle Street Station as an alternative of Union Station, which will increase capability for the SouthWest Service whereas additionally releasing capability at Union Station for elevated Amtrak service and proposed high-speed rail. This project additionally is anticipated to enhance Amtrak Cardinal service efficiency by eliminating freight conflicts in the neighborhood of eightieth Street. The road-rail grade crossing separation at 71st Street will cut back neighborhood traffic delay and enhance security.

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