Saturday, January 5, 2019

The new 95th terminal is now open... #Ward09 #BuildingwithBeale

The CTA terminal at 95th is 90% complete. The north terminal is now open as of Friday morning. As a result it gives me the excuse to share this article from the Tribune before the north terminal opened:
The $280 million project replaces the original 50-year-old rail and bus terminal at the southern end of the Red Line, which runs along the Dan Ryan Expressway. The station, one of the busiest on the CTA system, serves 20,000 daily commuters and sees about 1,000 CTA, Pace and Greyhound bus trips on an average weekday, CTA officials said.

The four-year station construction was also a necessary step in building the extension of the Red Line south to 130th Street, which is part of the agency’s long-range plan.

“This is a huge, huge accomplishment for the city of Chicago and the Far South Side,” said Ald. Anthony Beale, 9th. Beale said the station will be more user-friendly for bus, rail and pedestrian traffic and will draw business to the area.

The south terminal was completed last spring. Having two terminals eliminates the conflict between eastbound and westbound buses on 95th Street, allowing eastbound buses to use the south terminal and westbound buses to use the north terminal, CTA officials said. Previously, there was only a north terminal.

The new station includes a heated, glass-enclosed pedestrian bridge over 95th Street, connecting the north and south terminals and cutting down on conflicts between cars and people walking. The number of bus bays has increased to 26, from 12, CTA officials said.

The station also will have more turnstiles and Ventra vending machines, a longer train platform to reduce overcrowding, additional bike racks, and new signage.

“I think it’s a great lift to the community,” said Ald. Howard Brookins Jr., 21st. “It’s a beautiful station. It will spur additional economic development down 95th Street, and it will ease traffic going down that corridor.”
As for that future CTA Red Line extension:
The construction of the new station needed to be done before the Red Line can be extended to 130th Street, CTA officials said. Last year, the CTA picked a route for the extension, which will include four new rail stations. The agency is now preparing to complete the preliminary design and engineering work needed to pursue federal funding for the project.
You want to know the financial scale?
The cost of the station exceeds that of two recent big projects: the $203 million Wilson Street station rebuilding on the Red Line’s north branch and the $75 million Washington/Wabash station in the Loop. The 95th Street station construction was larger than the other projects and included track work in the rail yard at 98th Street, CTA officials said.
Finally seems like an unnecessary expense:
The new station, which has a distinctive red roof, will feature two new public art displays by Chicago native Theaster Gates. The south terminal will have a pair of tapestries made from the strips of decommissioned fire hoses that are sewn together, and the north terminal will include a radio station and DJ booth that will broadcast over the station’s public address system.
A DJ Booth and a radio station, really? Though I hear that there will be public bathrooms available. Still not sure about that idea of DJ at a transit terminal.

Regardless can't wait to see the finished project...