CHICAGO — The mayor announced plans Tuesday to hire 100 new traffic aides to cope with detours caused by the upcoming Red Line reconstruction project.
The new traffic aides will help deal with shuttle buses, augmented bus line service and other roadway congestion brought on by the $425 million Chicago Transit Authority reconstruction project starting in May.
The 40-year-old rail bed down the center of the Dan Ryan Expy. is being completely rebuilt from Chinatown to the end of the Red Line at 95th Street. It's part of $1 billion in CTA repairs approved in 2011 by Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Gov. Pat Quinn for the Red and Purple lines.
Stations along the Dan Ryan branch of the Red Line also will be rebuilt and upgraded.
The 100 traffic control aide positions are being staffed through the Office of Emergency Management and Communications. The new hires will start part time at $18.43 an hour. The jobs have been posted online, with registration continuing through Feb. 18. The cost of the new program is estimated at $3 million.
The jobs are not considered temporary — new hires will be eligible for traffic-supervision positions after the reconstruction project, which is estimated to take five months. During that time, Red Line trains will be rerouted south of Roosevelt Road to the elevated tracks used by the Green Line.
The CTA also is hiring 400 new bus drivers to service commuters being shifted from the Red Line during repairs.
“Since the beginning of my administration I have focused on job creation and investment throughout the city, including the improvement of our transportation services,” Emanuel said. “These investments accomplish both goals, by quickly putting Chicagoans to work today while improving the quality of life for all residents by ensuring faster and more reliable transportation for years to come.”