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Illinois was awarded $1.2 billion from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to improve the current Chicago-to-St. Louis rail corridor. This improved rail service will entice people to make the trip to Chicago that they otherwise would not have. Projections show that over the next 10 years, about 800,000 new tourists will visit Chicago because of the rail improvements, providing a major boost to the local economy.
The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) studied the economic benefits resulting from these new tourists over the first 10 years of rail operation.