Rush Joins Metra, Local Leaders to Celebrate New Auburn Park Station Project
CHICAGO – U.S. Representative Bobby L. Rush (D-Ill.) joined Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski, State Sen. Jacqueline Collins, and Cook County Chairman Toni Preckwinkle today to celebrate the upcoming construction of a new Metra station to serve the Auburn Gresham community.
“In a city like Chicago, public transportation is an artery that goes to the heart of economic opportunity. This is especially true for lower-income communities where it is often residents’ only option for commuting to work, traveling to the grocery store, or going to see a doctor,” said Rep. Rush. “I am happy after a five-year long wait, funding has been secured for this significant capital project. I would also like to commend State Senator Collins’ unparalleled focus on this project, and I have thoroughly enjoyed working with her and supporting her current efforts. I look forward to future opportunities to work with the State of Illinois, the City of Chicago, and Metra to ensure that all Chicagoans have equal access to reliable transportation.”
“Access to public transportation is proven to improve the overall economic health and vitality of a community,” Derwinski said. “We at Metra are pleased that this project is able to move forward and thank Senator Collins for her tireless advocacy for the Auburn Gresham community and bringing this project to fruition.”
A Metra station at Auburn Park has been planned for years. Metra had originally planned to fund the project with its share of proceeds from two state of Illinois bond programs from 2009. However, that funding was held up in the state’s budget woes and then cut in 2017. Funding for the stations was restored in recent state budgets, and the state has released $20 million for Auburn Park.
Metra contracted with T.Y. Lin International Inc. to create the design for the station, which will be located just south of 79th Street on the Rock Island Line. The design currently stands at 60 percent complete and is expected to be finished by the end of 2019. Once design is complete, Metra will go out for bid for a construction firm and expects to begin work on the new station in 2020.