JEFFERSON PARK — The rehabilitation of the Jefferson Park Transit Center would be funded in part by $5 million from the Jefferson Park and Portage Park Tax Increment Financing districts under a measure put forward by Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
The $25 million renovation of the transit center at 4917 N. Milwaukee Ave. — which includes stops for nearly a dozen buses, the Chicago Transit Authority's Blue Line and Metra's Union Pacific Northwest Line, is expected to include an improved bus turn-around, new canopies, lighting, escalators and stairs, officials said.
The work is part of the CTA's $492 million Blue Line rehabilitation project, which includes extensive work at the Jefferson Park station as part of an effort to shave 10 minutes off the trip from Downtown to O'Hare, Brugh said.
The Jefferson Park TIF district is expected to contribute $3 million and the Portage Park TIF is expected to contribute $2 million toward the project, said Owen Brugh, Ald. John Arena's chief of staff.
During the station renovation, a new crosswalk will be installed across Milwaukee Avenue, Brugh said. Plans for the crosswalk have been in the works since May 2013, when 45th Ward residents set aside $125,000 of Arena's discretionary budget for the project.
The Jefferson Park station opened in 1970 and accommodates 2 million passengers annually, officials said.
Tax-increment financing districts capture all growth in the property tax base in a designated area for a set period of time, usually 20 years or more, and divert it into a special fund for projects designed to spur redevelopment and eradicate blight.
The City Council is expected to approve the measure at its next meeting, March 18.
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