CHICAGO — Blue Line riders can expect weekend service disruptions and delays as the first phase of the $492 million project will begin next month.
Monday, the CTA announced construction on the track between Damen and Logan Square stops would force 10 weekend closures of small sections of the line between March and August. The four-year reconstruction project to provide smoother, faster commutes and improve stations along the Blue Line was originally announced by Mayor Rahm Emanuel in December.
Tracks will close for the first time March 21 at 10 p.m. and reopen March 23 at 4 a.m.
Replacing the wooden rail ties, tie plates and other track materials will shut down the tracks from Western to Logan Square for seven weekends, and the tracks from Damen to Western for three. Construction will also cause street closures and parking restrictions near the track.
During the closures, the CTA will provide a free shuttle bus for rail customers and free transfer back into rail stations, much like the approach they took when the Red Line was closed for reconstruction from May through October of 2013.
The buses will run continuously, stopping at each affected station to pick up and drop off passengers.
“As with all of our projects, our main goal is to minimize the impacts on both commuters and the community as we improve the Blue Line for the long term,” said Forest Claypool, CTA president.
Schedules are still being finalized for the rehabilitation projects at Western, Damen and California stations.