Lightfoot and CTA officials unveil new funding plans for $3.6 billion Red Line extension – NBC Chicago

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot unveiled a proposal on Wednesday for a massive new Tax Incremental Funding (TIF) district that would help provide financial support for a $3.6 billion extension of the CTA Red Line on the south side of town.

The proposed extension would stretch 5.6 miles from the current Red Line breakpoint to 95e Street at 130e Street, according to officials.

Four new stations would be added along the route, with park-and-ride facilities installed at each station to help ease the flow of vehicles and bicycles through these areas. A new rail car storage and maintenance facility would also be constructed at 120e Rue, officials said.

In total, the project is expected to cost $3.6 billion. The proposed TIF district would inject an estimated $959 million in funding for the project, with the remaining $2 billion expected to come from the federal government and other sources.

“The Red Line Extension Project represents one of the most critical investments in CTA’s history and will undoubtedly be a transformative development for our Far South Side community.

According to officials, 67 million passengers used the Red Line in 2019, making it CTA’s busiest line.

If approved, the TIF would be the second created specifically for Chicago transit. The former was designed to help fund the Red Purple modernization project, generating $622 million in funding for the $2.1 billion project.

According to a press release, a transit facility improvement area would be designated between Madison Street and 134e Street, extending half a mile in each direction. This would designate where TIF funds could be spent.

A redevelopment project area would also be designated between Madison and Pershing Road, which would generate property tax growth on 7,726 parcels of land spread over 1,445 acres within half a mile of the TFIA.

Finally, a TIF redevelopment plan would be designed to define the scope, budget and allocation of funds generated by the new neighborhood.

“The Red Line Extension will be one of the Far South’s biggest investments in decades,” CTA President Dorval Carter Jr. said in a statement. “RLE has been a community-driven project from the beginning, and members of the surrounding communities will remain essential in helping to shape this project and its path forward.”

Under the terms of the plan, which can be viewed on the Chicago City Clerk’s website, the project’s lanes would be elevated between 95e Street and 119e Street before returning to street level by 130e Street on the far south side.

Stations would be built at 103rd Street, 111e Street, near the intersection of Michigan Avenue and 116e Street, and at 130e Street near the Altgeld Gardens housing complex, officials said.

NBC Chicago

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