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Explore 2022 RTA Local Planning projects and successes in interactive implementation report

July 11, 2023

Implementation report

Every year, the RTA’s Local Planning department assists local governments throughout northeastern Illinois on projects that strengthen the region’s transit system through two programs: Community Planning and Access to Transit. These programs provide funding and technical assistance for local governments to plan for and create pedestrian friendly, multi-modal, equitable, and accessible communities.

The RTA recently published its 2022 Local Planning Implementation Story Map, an interactive report of 21 RTA-supported projects around the region that are starting soon, in progress, or recently completed.

The report includes details on eight Access to Transit projects accepted in 2022, which were packaged together and submitted for federal grant funding in 2023.

Four Access to Transit projects that were completed in 2022 are also detailed in the report, including:

  1. Phase I Engineering (the initial process for studying and evaluating a project before moving on to construction) in the Village of Berkeley for sidewalk network improvements to close gaps along Lee Boulevard, Morris Avenue, Rohde Avenue, Spencer Avenue, and Jerele Boulevard.
  2. Construction of various pedestrian improvements to the Broadway Avenue corridor in the Village of Melrose Park including the relocation of a bus stop along with bus shelters.
  3. Phase I Engineering in the City of Harvard for ADA and future pedestrian access improvements along US Route 14, IL Route 173, Marengo Road, and Ayer Street.
  4. Phase I Engineering in the Village of University Park for a side path that will connect the University Park Metra Station to the I-57 Industrial Corridor.

Projects that are achieving recommendations from plans previously completed through the Community Planning program are also highlighted in the report. One such project is the Harvey Transportation Center, which received a federal grant to construct a new transit facility that will enable more seamless connections between Pace and Metra service, while also improving access for pedestrians and people with disabilities. Currently, riders wishing to transfer to and from Pace and Metra stations in Harvey must walk at least 200 feet and across Park Avenue to make the connection. The new transportation center will rearrange the existing bus facilities to provide better access to the Metra station, construct 14 bus bays, create a paratransit boarding area, and add a dedicated lane for disembarking riders. The Metra station will feature improvements such as a heated platform and an extended platform to allow all train doors to open. In addition, the site and existing parking lots will be improved to be accessible for people with disabilities. Other projects listed in the report also propose to improve pedestrian accessibility and multimodal connectivity by providing new pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure near transit stops and stations.

The report lists nine other examples of communities throughout the region that successfully implemented recommendations from previously completed plans that received funding and technical assistance from the RTA’s Community Planning program. As detailed in the report, these communities’ efforts have not only improved transit effectiveness in the region through access improvements but have also provided a variety of mobility options for residents, increased opportunities for residents to use low carbon transportation modes, and expanded the variety of residential and commercial options for communities.

Overall, the projects included in the implementation report show progress toward the goals of Transit is the Answer, the RTA’s regional transit strategic plan adopted in 2023, and the principle of “Commitment to Change.” Moving forward, the RTA will continue to assist communities throughout the region to tackle immediate and emerging planning issues related to transit.

Read more in the 2022 Implementation Report.

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Tagged in: Community Planning | Access to Transit | RTAMS | RTA | Metra | Pace

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