The Chicago Transit Authority announced plans this week to shut down 10 miles of track and nine stations on the south Red Line, from the Cermak-Chinatown stop all the way to 95th Street, for five months starting in spring 2013. During the closure, the 40+ year-old tracks will be replaced on the line to eliminate “slow zones” and allow the use of new 5000-Series ‘L’ cars.
CTA Board Chariman Terry Peterson told media at a press conference on June 4 that 40 percent of the Dan Ryan branch of the Red Line is restricted by slow zones, and that will grow to 60 percent by next year due to deterioration of tracks. After completion, the CTA expects fewer delays and service issues, and 10 minute faster travel times on the south Red Line between 95th Street and Cermak/Chinatown. The project will also see a number of upgrades at Red Line stations along the route.
During construction, CTA will offer extensive alternate service providing multiple options for commuters.
- Free shuttle buses with 24-hour service from 69th, 79th, 87th and 95th/Dan Ryan stations to the Garfield station on the Green Line
(a) including express service from stations with free entry at Garfield for shuttle bus riders and a local, station-to-station shuttle from 63rd to 95th/Dan Ryan
- Free rail entry for shuttle bus riders at Garfield on the Green Line
- 50 cent discounted bus rides on many South Side routes
- 24-hour Red Line service on Green Line tracks between Roosevelt and Ashland/63rd
- Expanded bus service on existing routes
More information and updates about the Red Line closure can be found on the CTA’s Red Line project website.