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Metra meets on-time goals, advances Homewood Station rehab project


During July, Metra logged an on-time performance rate of 95.3 percent, marking the fifth consecutive month the commuter railroad met or exceeded its goal.

A train is considered "on time" if it reaches its final destination within five minutes and 59 second of its scheduled arrival, Metra officials said in a press release.

The railroad's goal is to operate at least 95 percent of trains on time.

Additionally, last month's rate exceeded Metra's 93.2 percent five-year average for the month of July.

For the first seven months of 2015, systemwide on-time performance was 95.7 percent, Metra officials said.

"We’re pleased with our performance over the past five months, but we know we can always do better and we strive to do that each and every day," said Metra Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer Don Orseno.

Union Pacific Railroad dispatchers decided to halt trains due to a severe wind warning on July 13, which led to 63 delays. This fell under Metra's "human error" category, which was the most common cause of delays.

Train loading, which occurs when trains remain at a station longer than expected, was the second-most common cause for delays, Metra officials said.

Meanwhile, Metra's board yesterday approved a $585,000 amendment to its 2015 capital program to fund a rehabilitation project at a station in Homewood, Ill.

The funding includes a $468,000 grant from the federal Surface Transportation Program, as well as $117,000 in matching funds from local sources.

Metra will use the funding to procure design and engineering services for the project. Engineering work is expected to begin in 2016, and will take about one year.

The agency has begun interim repairs in several areas of the facility, including replacing all steps on the metal stairway connecting the pedestrian tunnel to the platform, as well as all ceiling tiles, ceiling rails and air vents above those stairs. Metra crews also began cleaning, sealing and painting all windows above the stairs, repairing and painting stucco, and performing a handful of other improvements.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 8/27/2015