Could Des Plaines get another Metra station?

 
 
Updated 2/14/2018 7:36 AM
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  • Des Plaines officials plan to spend $175,000 to determine whether there is enough ridership to support a third Metra station in the city. The station would sit near the intersection of Oakton and Lee streets, along the North Central Service line.

      Des Plaines officials plan to spend $175,000 to determine whether there is enough ridership to support a third Metra station in the city. The station would sit near the intersection of Oakton and Lee streets, along the North Central Service line. Chacour Koop | Staff Photographer

Des Plaines could be getting another Metra station that would give riders a direct trip to O'Hare International Airport and Union Station in Chicago.

City officials are targeting a new station on the North Central Service line just east of the intersection of Oakton and Lee streets. This year, the city plans to fund an estimated $175,000 study to determine whether enough commuters would use the station to justify its construction.

If it does, a new stop still could be at least a couple of years away. After the feasibility study is completed, the city will submit it to Metra to decide whether to approve a new station.

The city would be required to pay for a portion or the entire cost, City Manager Mike Bartholomew said.

A potential Des Plaines station on the North Central Service line would fill a long gap between stops at Prospect Heights and O'Hare, Bartholomew said.

Metra spokeswoman Meg Thomas-Reile confirmed Tuesday that Des Plaines has expressed interest in a new Metra station near Oakton for several years.

"We have advised them all along that a feasibility study would be necessary and that the city would be responsible for securing funding for this study," she said. "Metra has provided them with a list of parameters that a feasibility study should evaluate, such as the station's anticipated costs, the degree of community support and its impact on traffic."

Much would depend upon available funding and how a new stop would fit within Metra's schedules, Thomas-Reile said.

The city's two stations -- downtown at 1501 Miner St. and the Cumberland station at 475 E. Northwest -- are both on the Union Pacific Northwest Line. That line ends at the Ogilvie Center in downtown Chicago.

Meanwhile, the Cumberland station will be completing a makeover in late spring, Bartholomew said. Metra is adding a new roof, facade, windows and lighting, as well as improving the station's interior.

Metra: Cumberland station renovations begin in late spring

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