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Residents turn out to share views on CTA rehab

Chicago Transit Authority officials are meeting with Evanston residents this evening at the Fleetwood-Jourdain Center to discuss plans for modernization of the Red and Purple Lines.

Chicago Transit Authority officials are meeting with Evanston residents this evening at the Fleetwood-Jourdain Center to discuss plans for modernization of the Red and Purple Lines.

Some options under consideration could eliminate two Evanston stations and end reverse-commute rush hour express service for people who live in Chicago but work in Evanston.

The agency is considering seven different options with price tags ranging from roughly $280 million to more than $4 billion dollars. The projects which would take several years to complete, assuming funding — mostly from the federal government — materializes.

Just maintaining the status quo with only minimal repairs to keep the Red and Purple lines functional would carry the $280 million price tag.

The next step up in price would make all stations handicap-accessible and provide some reduction in slow zones at a cost of $2.4 billion for the Purple Line from Linden to Howard and the Red Line as far south as Belmont — a total distance of 9.5 miles.

For about $4 billion, several other plan options call for speeding service on the Purple Line by eliminating stations at Noyes Street and South Boulevard while adding additional entrances to the stations nearest the ones that would close.

These plans call for rebuilding the system to increase the maximum length of trains from six cars to eight and redesigning some curves in the track to permit faster travel speeds.

Tonight’s meeting at the community center at 1655 Foster St. continues until 8:30 p.m. and the CTA will also be accepting public comment on its website through Feb. 18.

Related development: A state appeals court decision ruling Illinois’ $31 billion capital spending spending plan illegal may put funding for the CTA modernization project in jeopardy. More about that from WBEZ.

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