Thursday, September 14, 2017

Metra awards $21.6-million contract for Fox River bridge

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Metra's Board of Directors has awarded a $21.6-million contract to replace the 136-year-old Fox River bridge to Illinois Constructors Corporation of Elburn.

The project will replace the existing single-track bridge with a double-track bridge built to modern standards. Metra received a $14-million federal Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant for the $34 million project. Metra and Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) will share the remaining cost, with $6 million from CP and $14 million from Metra.

The bridge, located about 35 miles from downtown Chicago, carries 54 Metra trains and up to eight Canadian Pacific freight trains each weekday.

"This bridge project is extremely important for improving the reliability, performance and operational flexibility of the Milwaukee District West Line," said Metra Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director Don Orseno. "We're happy to move this project forward and thankful for the support we've received from our delegation in Washington to secure the funding we needed."

"Investing in our state's infrastructure is one of the most important things we can do to move Illinois forward," said Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL). "This project, which will use a significant infusion of federal TIGER funds to help bring the 136-year-old Fox River Bridge into the 21st century, will improve passenger safety, save Illinoisans thousands of hours in wasted travel time each year and boost Chicagoland's economy."

Construction is planned to begin in the fourth quarter of 2017 and take about three years. Metra riders will experience minimal impacts on service during the project.