Initial permits have been issued and renderings revealed for the upcoming reconstruction of the CTA Blue Line Racine station at 418 S Racine Avenue in the Near West Side. The project is part of the first phase of the larger Blue Line reconstruction currently underway, replacing much of the existing tracks we see today. The work is being led by the CTA with local firm Ross Barney Architects working on its design.
Earlier this year we covered this first phase of the greater $3 billion Blue Line reconstruction, which commenced July 23rd with the closure of the system between the LaSalle and Illinois Medical District stations. Here the work includes the replacement of nearly three miles of aging tracks, station touch-ups, and the improvements to the Racine station, which will be joined by six additional reconstructed stations in the long-term across the south branch.
The work on Racine will be split in two, starting with the current auxiliary entrance on S Loomis Street reopening in October while the main station house is completely demolished. This will be replaced by a sleek box-shaped building with a new elevator and stairs. Once completed the Loomis entrance will close and be reconstructed to resemble the original 1950s design with a new ADA-compliant ramp. The platform itself will also receive new roofing, lighting, seats, and windbreak structures according to the permit.
Work on the main station is set to begin soon and be completed by the end of 2024, with the second phase on the Loomis entrance starting soon after and finishing in 2025. Overall work on this first phase of the Blue Line reconstruction should be completed by the end of this month, with the Racine station partially reopening on October 7th. The CTA has hired Kiewit Infrastructure Co. to serve as the GC for the roughly $22.8 million station rebuild.