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Jefferson Park Blue Line renovation on track for fall groundbreaking

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The Northwest Side transit hub is getting a $25 million makeover

Chicago Transit Authority

A planned $25 million overhaul of the Jefferson Park Transit Center on Chicago’s Northwest Side took a key step forward last week, landing its first construction permit. Although the Chicago Transit Authority recently announced that work would not begin until this fall, the recent permit is a clear sign that groundbreaking is inching closer.

The scope of the upcoming renovation includes new bus canopies, lighting systems, signage, and accessibility improvements including new escalators down the train as well as updates to the platforms themselves. The bus area will also be home to a new work from artist Jamie Pawlus.

Serving 20,000 daily commuters, the Jefferson Park Transit Center is an intermodal connection point for the CTA’s Blue Line trains, Metra’s Union Pacific Northwest Line, and nearly a dozen bus routes.

The renovation represents the largest upgrade to the original Skidmore, Owings & Merrill-designed facility since its construction in 1970. It is part of the CTA’s 2014 “Your New Blue” project aimed at rebuilding 14 outdated stations as well as replacing aging track and signal equipment.

The CTA named Walsh Construction as general contractor for the Jefferson Park project as well as the new Belmont Blue Line and Garfield Green Line stations in late 2017. Design firm Exp is listed as the project’s architect.

The Jefferson Park Transit Hub improvements were originally expected to break ground this summer and wrap up in 2019. It’s unclear how the newly revised timeline will impact its delivery date.