No North Shore Holding Tracks In Amtrak Hiawatha Expansion: IDOT

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"You have my commitment that IDOT will not be moving forward seeking federal support for this project," the department's acting chief said.

[Below is a summary of the Patch.com article]

SPRINGFIELD, IL — The Illinois Department of Transportation announced last week it has decided to drop a proposal to build five miles of holding tracks alongside railroads in a pair of affluent North Shore communities. The expansion is part of roughly $200 million project to increase service on the Amtrak Hiawatha Line between Chicago and Milwaukee from seven to 10 daily round trips. 

In a May 2 letter to the state senators representing the North Shore — 9th District Sen. Laura Fine of Glenview and 29th District Sen. Julie Morrison of Deerfield — IDOT's acting secretary confirmed the agency would not back the plan.

"IDOT will not agree to the freight train holding tracks in either Glenview or Lake Forest, and you have my commitment that IDOT will not be moving forward seeking federal support for this project," said Omer Osman in the letter, which was released Friday by officials in both towns.

Last September, former Gov. Bruce Rauner and the former chief of IDOT announced that the Hiawatha expansion had been indefinitely put on hold in response to opposition from north suburban communities.

Read the full article here.

Gary Ricke