CTA could close stops on Red, Purple lines

File photo. AP

January 28, 2011 4:24:10 AM PST
The Chicago Transit Authority is planning to make repairs along the Red and Purple lines, from Belmont in Chicago to the Linden stop in Wilmette.

Part of the plan could include closing two stations on the Purple line and three stations on the Red Line.

The CTA is proposing six options to modernize the lines. Three of them include consolidating stops which could mean closing Red Line stations at Thorndale, Lawrence, and Jarvis in Chicago.

"That would be tough because we'd have to either walk to Howard or walk to Morris in Evanston. And that will be really inconvenient for," said Ayana London, CTA rider.

A 9 1/2 mile stretch from Chicago's Belmont station to the Linden terminal in Wilmette was built 100 years ago. The CTA says it's time to bring tracks and stations into the 21st century.

"Only six of the 21 stations are acceptable to persons with disabilities and the goal of this project is to update, modernize, and make the entire line and all of the stations on it accessible," said Michael Connelly, CTA.

Decay is quite evident to CTA riders on the Red and Purple Lines.

"They are a little run down. So, it obviously needs fixing," said CTA rider Michael Connelly.

"Yes, they do need repair," said CTA rider Ayana London.

The options also call for closing South Boulevard and Foster in Evanston. Some riders say they are okay with that because they say the stops are not that busy.

"As far as I can tell, nobody ever gets off there. I have seen people on the platform a few times. I don't know. If they had to get rid of one, that is probably the one I would vote for," said Patrick Lester, CTA rider.

"If I were to eliminate a station, then this one would make sense," said Kwang Oh, CTA rider.

The project would be a big one with a big price tag. To do it right, the CTA says it is cost $4.2 billion.

"We would be asking for additional federal money to come to the Chicago region to help fund this major rehabilitation project," said Connelly.

The various options will be discussed at the Fleetwood Community Center meeting Thursday at 6 p.m. in Evanston.