$1bn grant gives Chicago green light for Red and Purple lines upgrade

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Photo: Thomas Barrat / Shutterstock.com.

Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) has finalised a $1 billion funding deal which will allow work to begin on the first phase of the Red and Purple Modernization Program (RPM).

CTA has now secured the $2.1 billion needed to begin the project to upgrade the North Red Line from Belmont to Howard and the Purple Line between Belmont and Linden.

The first phase of the project will involve the reconstruction of stations at Lawrence, Argyle, Berwyn and Bryn Mawr. A bypass will also be built which will allow Brown Line trains to cross the Red and Purple lines without delaying services.

Initial design work is expected to start this year. Construction will begin in late 2018 and will take up to five years to complete, CTA has said.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said the project was “an investment in Chicago’s residents and neighbourhoods, connecting them to jobs, education and more”.

CTA successfully completed a reconstruction of the Red Line South in 2013. At the end of last year, the authority also announced funding for the Red Line Extension, which will take the line to 130th Street in Chicago’s South Side.

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