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Railroad Escrow Account passes both chambers
Hooray! After stalling for a short while in the House, SB 2861 passed both chambers in the final hours of the 97th Illinois General Assembly. The IDOT–Railroad Escrow Account bill establishes a fund to be used on maintenance of the higher speed rail line being developed from Chicago to St.…
1955 Chicago Union Station Booklet: Cross-Roads of the Nation
This 1950s booklet was produced by the railroads that then owned Chicago Union Station to promote the terminal's modern amenities and luxurious cross-country trains. When the station was at its peak, it boasted everything from a women's lounge and nursery to a jail. Today, this piece serves as an…
Lessons in transit: How Chicagoland can improve its transit network
What ideas do you have for making our region’s transit system more attractive, efficient and reliable? Every few weeks MPC produces Talking Transit, an e-newsletter highlighting transit innovations from around the world, to spark some new thinking for our transit system – and we’d…
Even at mid-speed, rail improvements can crank up Illinois' economy
This op-ed by MPC President MarySue Barrett appeared in Crain's Chicago Business May 3, 2010. As Illinois and neighboring states explore how a high-speed rail network could transform the Midwest, the Chicago area stands to gain employment and attract new economic development. The question is, how…
MarySue's Midweek Links
People sometimes ask me, “What are you reading lately?” The sheer volume of information we all come across each day – my sources are typically newspapers, my Google Reader, e-mails, MPC’s own blog, and even my Facebook page – makes answering this question…
The multiple benefits of high-speed rail in the crossroads of America
As part of Illinois’ $1.23 billion high speed rail grant, $133 million has been allocated to build the Englewood Flyover, at 63rd and State streets on the South Side of Chicago. More than 10 years ago, MPC highlighted this location as one of dozens of road and rail chokepoints across…
High-speed rail: On track to revitalize communities?
The Metropolitan Planning Council has been an advocate for increased investments in the Chicago region to improve the passenger and freight rail system we have—and ensure we remain competitive for the future with a 21st century transportation network. More than that, we understand how fixed…
U.S. DOT budget bringing 'infrastructure of tomorrow' to region
In keeping with President Obama’s State of the Union pledge “to build the infrastructure of tomorrow,” the U.S. Dept. of Transportation (U.S. DOT) released its budget for FY2011, which includes $2.2 billion for Illinois and $1.2 billion for Indiana for construction and…
The fast track to high-speed rail
Today, President Obama announced the recipients of $8 billion in high-speed rail grants allocated to 31 states along 13 major rail corridors. The Midwest Region was awarded almost $2.6 billion for four major corridors: Chicago-St. Louis-Kansas City, Minneapolis-Milwaukee-Chicago,…
Updated: Buzz on high-speed rail grant announcement
Obama will be in Tampa, Fla. tomorrow to announce high speed rail grants to 31 states for projects on 13 major corridors. Illinois submitted an application – with the support of 7 other states in the Midwest – supporting a high-speed rail corridor from Chicago to St. Louis. Stay tuned…

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