Two stations at risk in Purple Line modernization

Some options being considered by Chicago Transit Authority officials for modernizing the Purple Line through Evanston include closing stations at South Boulevard and Foster Street.

The entrance to the South Boulevard station has an elaborate glazed terracotta facade.

The plans, to be discussed at a public meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday at the Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center, propose adding new entrances to the Davis Street station at Church Street., to the Noyes Street station at Gaffield Place, and to the Main Street station at Madison Street as a way to minimize added walking times for commuters now served by the stations that would close.

At Monday’s City Council meeting, Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl said that upgrades to the Purple Line are desperately needed, and she encouraged residents to turn out in large numbers for the meeting.

Aldermen whose wards include stations that might be closed have voiced opposition to shutdown options.

Students heading for the Northwestern University campus get off a northbound train at the Foster station as a southbound train pulls in.

The Purple Line now makes seven stops in Evanston spaced roughly a half mile apart.

CTA officials say reducing the number of stations would cut overall travel times for commuters and would reduce the cost of upgrading the system.

But opponents say the closures would inconvenience many people who live near the stations that would close and also, in the case of the Foster Street station, reduce traffic to nearby retail businesses.

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