Monday, February 22, 2010

A new Union Station is on the way!

Today, the Tribune's Blair Kamin reported on the Amtrak sponsored contest to redevelop Chicago's Union Station, one of Amtrak's most valuable assets, for the first time since it's 1992 renovation by Lucien Lagrange Architects of Chicago.
The firms chosen to compete are:
  1. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (Chicago)
  2. U.S. Equities Realty (Chicago)
  3. Jones Lang LaSalle (Chicago)
  4. Goody Clancy (Boston)
  5. Wallace Roberts & Todd (Philadelphia)
  6. Ehrenkrantz Eckstut & Kuhn (New York)
  7. KlingStubbins (Cambridge, MA and New York)
Late last month, the Tribune called for a redevelopment of Union Station to accommodate the increased ridership that will result from Chicago's position as the hub for high speed trains in the Midwest. Hopefully a strong proposal by one of the above 7 firms, will help secure additional TIGER funding, the same way New York was awarded $85 million for Phase 1 of Moynihan Station.

Today's announcement arrives on the heels of last week's TIGER grants, which will support high impact CREATE programs, such as the 75th Street Corridor project, that will shift Metra SouthWest Service trains to LaSalle Street station in order to free up Union Station for increased Amtrak and Metra service.

You can help the cause for a modernized Union Station by sending an email to Mayor Daley, via the Midwest HSR Association's proposal for Union Station as Chicago's downtown airport.

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On a separate, but Midwest related note, the EPA will invest $2.2 billion for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Action Plan which was signed by President Bush in 2002, to clean up their polluted beaches and water.

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