Northeast Illinois Regional Commuter Railroad Corp. (Metra) recently obtained $14.2 million from the Federal Transit Administration to help expand service along its North Central and Southwest lines.
Metra will use an $8 million grant to increase rail service along its North Central line by adding stops in Franklin Park, Schiller Park, Rosemont and Grayslake. The agency also will upgrade parking facilities along the line, and add 18 miles of double track between Antioch and Chicago, enabling Metra to add new mid-day service and operate 22 daily trains compared with a current 10.
The agency plans to use a $6.2 million grant to extend its Southwest Line 11 miles to serve Palos Heights, New Lenox and Manhattan. The agency also will upgrade tracks, install a new signal control system, add double tracking, expand a rail yard, enlarge existing stations and expand commuter parking. Metra will increase service from 16 daily trains to 30 after the project is completed next year.