CHICAGO - Work began this week to make room for the CTA's controversial flyover project. The project is designed to cut down on delays around Belmont where the Red, Brown and Purple lines pass through at all hours of the day.
Several buildings will be demolished in the Lakeview neighborhood for the new elevated track system that is designed to cut down train delays on a busy stretch on the North Side.
Gas lines were shut off Wednesday on a stretch of Wilton, adjacent to the busy Belmont CTA stop. The preparations there and in the surrounding blocks north and east herald a busy construction season for a $2.1 billion CTA project that promises an elevated bypass.
Transit officials say it is designed to reduce delays along a congested North Side public transit artery.
At Clark and Roscoe, whole blocks will be torn down for the flyover. Preservationists got the CTA to save historic apartments, which will be moved into the adjacent lot, but the struggle to keep the facades of Clark Street remain.
In all 14 buildings will be demolished, more than a year before the city is to break ground on the flyover.
But the Irie Jerk Bar and Grill will stay as the concrete curve squeezes it in. The island of real estate is not part of the CTA's $32 million property acquisition budget for the project.
The 14 buildings will be demolished before Cubs' Opening Day on April 9. Construction on the actually flyover part of the project will start in 2019.