The 75th St. CIP will deliver transportation, economic and environmental benefits in the Chicago neighborhoods of Ashburn, Englewood, Auburn Gresham and West Chatham in addition to the project's regional and national benefits.
Construction of the 75th St. CIP's rail and road improvement projects will provide numerous community benefits which are summarized below.
Transportation & Environmental
The 75th St. CIP will deliver transportation benefits through construction of a road-rail grade separation project, improve viaducts that are a safety and mobility concern in the community and improve local mobility to further enhance safety and accessibility. By removing conflicts between freight and passenger trains and eliminating the grade crossing at 71st Street near Bell Avenue, the 75th St. CIP will:
- Increase passenger train reliability and eliminate delay to passengers
- Increase freight train reliability, speed and capacity
- Eliminate congestion, delays and idling for motorists
- Improve air quality
The 75th St. CIP will provide economic benefits by creating and promoting contracting opportunities for certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBEs), implementing job training programs and supporting education programs within project area schools. All interested businesses, including DBEs, will be informed of design and construction contracting opportunities for the 75th St. CIP. An event to encourage networking and project education for interested DBEs was completed in January 2019 and another is planned for 2021. In addition, goals for DBE participation on each publicly bid design and construction package will be set in accordance with federal and state requirements.
The CREATE partners are supporting education programs in the community to encourage students' interest in engineering and technical fields throughout the design and construction of the 75th St. CIP. These activities include donations to existing educational programs, classroom visits by engineers and other professionals to local schools, field trips and internship opportunities.
Viaducts and Community Mobility Improvements
Viaduct improvements will reconstruct streets and sidewalks under existing structures, replace viaduct lighting and make other improvements. Thirty-six viaducts prioritized during the Phase I process will be improved as part of the 75th St. CIP. Four of these viaduct improvements will be constructed along with Forest Hill Flyover (P3) and 71st Street Grade Separation (GS19). These viaducts are located at 2200 West Marquette Street, 2150 West 68th Street, 2150 West 69th Street; and 2200 West 79th Street. The remaining viaducts identified will be constructed along with Rock Island Connection (P2) and Belt Junction and 80th Street Junction Replacements (EW2) when funding for construction of those projects is secured.
The 75th St. CIP will design and construct community mobility improvements that will enhance the safety, accessibility, quality of life and visual appeal of the community, as well as enhance the transit-riding experience. Potential improvement projects have been identified and are being prioritized for completion with input from representatives of the project communities.