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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 25, 2000

Governor Announces Illinois FIRST Funds for Transportation Repairs

CHICAGO -- Governor George H. Ryan today announced the release of $7.6 million in Illinois FIRST fund for repairs to aging Metra commuter rail line bridges and CTA rail transit stations in Chicago.

"The rail transit system in the Chicago region is heavily used and much of it dates back to the beginning of the 20th Century, requiring ongoing repairs and modernization. The funding provided by Illinois FIRST is critical to keeping the system going," Ryan said.

The $7.6 million will leverage $30.4 million in federal funds for a total investment of $38 million in the following projects:

  • Reconstruction of the 95-year old Chicago Avenue Bridge in Chicago on the Metra Milwaukee west commuter rail line between downtown Chicago and Elgin ($2.7 million state funds to match $10.7 million in federal funds).

  • Reconstruction of Lake Street Bridge in Hanover Park, also on the Metra Milwaukee west line ($900,000 state funds to match $3.6 million in federal funds). Total cost of this project is $11.6 million. $3 million in state and federal transit funds were awarded this spring and $4.1 million has been allocated from highway construction funds as part of the Lake Street (US 20) improvements programmed for fiscal years 2001-2005.

  • Reconstruction of the Washington and Jackson transfer tunnels between the CTA Red and Blue subway lines and the Washington/Madison Street station serving the Red line ($3.8 million state funds to match $15.3 million in federal funds).

Both the state and federal funds for the transfer tunnels come from programs specifically targeted to projects that reduce highway congestion and improve air quality (Operation GreenLight for the state dollars and Congestion Mitigation/Air Quality for the federal funds).

  • Design of a new entrance from LaSalle Street to the Clark/Division Street station serving the CTA Red Line ($150,000 in state funds to match $600,000 in federal dollars). Estimated construction cost for that project is $33 million.

  • Design of two elevators at the Monroe station for the Red Line to make the facility accessible to individuals with disabilities ($56,353 state funds, to match $282,000 in federal funds).



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