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Two of the Chicago Transit Authority's (CTA) oldest rail stations soon will receive major renovations and a third will be upgraded starting in September under a $33 million station improvement plan, agency officials announced yesterday.The plan for the California, Western and Damen stations is part of the $492 million Blue Line modernization program. The station projects are designed to provide riders with a more comfortable transit experience, CTA officials said in a press release.California Station will close for 42 days starting Sept. 4, and Damen Station will close for 63 days starting Oct. 20 to accommodate the work. Western Station underwent a major renovation in 2001 and needs less extensive improvements and repairs, so the station will remain open throughout the construction period, CTA officials said.The California and Damen stations will undergo extensive station and platform upgrades and repairs that include structural repairs as well as improved lighting, signage, more turnstiles and new bike racks. Historic features of the stations will be preserved and restored.The three stations were built in the late 1800s and are among the oldest on CTA's system.
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