Capital Projects

Current Capital Initiative Program 2016

Metra’s 2016 Capital program is funded through Federal Formula/State of Good Repair funds ($156.6 million). Other sources of funds that supplement Metra’s capital program include federal CMAQ (Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality) funding ($8.8 million), and ICE funds ($4.7 million). The plan also calls for the continuation of Metra’s Capital Farebox Fund ($15.6 million).

The absence of a fully authorized state capital program, delays in the renewal of a long-term federal transportation funding, and the RTA not issuing bonds in 2016 have limited the available capital dollars available for Metra to maintain infrastructure and rolling stock. The result is a continued reliance on Metra “self-help” and other local funds to support its capital funding needs and a growing backlog of capital projects.

Metra must submit to the RTA a balanced one-and five-year capital program. As part of the 2016 program, 57 percent of the capital funding will be allocated to the Modernization Program and includes the following: 

Rail Car Rehabilitation $22.3 million
Locomotive Rehabilitation $35.1 million
New Gallery Cars $15.0 million
Positive Train Control (PTC) $34.0 million

Line Abbreviations
Line Name Shown as
BNSF Railway BNS
Heritage Corridor HC
Metra Electric District MED
Milwaukee District MWD
North Central Service NCS
Rock Island District RID
System-wide non-line specific MET
Union Pacific UPR

Rolling Stock

PE 4507 LOCOMOTIVE REHABILITATION, MET This project involves the second major rehabilitation of 42 locomotives (units 174-214) which were delivered between 1989 and 1992. This project is part of an ongoing program to rehabilitate locomotives. This will save fuel and reduce emissions.

PE 4510 CAR REHABILITATION, MET This project involves the life-extending rehabilitation of up to 41 commuter cars built in 1974. The Chicago & Northwestern Railroad last rehabilitated these cars between 1990 and 1993.

PE 4805 EVENT RECORDERS, MET This project involves the upgraded replacement of the event recorders on Metra’s locomotives, EMUs (Highliner Cars), and cab control cars. The system will meet the FRA’s standard for crash worthiness and will include the necessary components for integration with the federally mandated Positive Train Control system. The upgrade will also make the recorders less prone to failure in the event of an accident.

PE 4806 LOCOMOTIVE MID LIFE REHAB, MET This project is for the mid-life rehabilitation of 27 locomotives that are among those delivered new in the early 2000s. This rehabilitation will enable these locomotives to reach their useful life of 25 years with a minimum of maintenance on major components.

PE 4810 USED LOCOMOTIVES, MET This project includes the purchase of three used locomotives and any necessary spare parts. The locomotives will be used in commuter service on various railroad lines owned or operated by Metra. Metra’s spare ratio for locomotives has declined partially due to the effects of very harsh winters on aged equipment.

PE 4909 CAR REHABILIATION (NIPPON SHARYO, P1) This project involves the mid-life rehabilitation of 302 bilevel commuter cars delivered between 2002 and 2008. This phase consists of 11 cab cars and 19 trailer/coach cars built by the Nippon-Sharyo Corporation. This is Phase I of a multi-phase project.

PE 5003 WHEEL REPLACEMENT, MET This project will implement the FRAmandated replacement of wheel sets on Metra’s fleet of locomotives and commuter cars. The replacement wheels will be used on vehicles being operated on all carriers and railroads in the Metra system as part of an ongoing program to overhaul major components on Metra’s fleet.

PE 5004 HVAC REFRIGERANT CONVERSION, MET This project involves the conversion of the air-conditioning units from the R22 refrigerant to a more environmentally friendly R407C refrigerant on Metra’s bi-level commuter cars. This work will be done on all cab cars, trailers and EMUs. The work involves replacing the AC system and replacing the temperature control systems. The HVAC system provides heating and cooling to the car’s interior.

PE 5006 NEW GALLERY CARS, MET The long-term proposed rail car program will purchase 367 new diesel cars to replace 318 cars with an average age of 43 years and increase the number of spare cars by 49. This would retire the oldest cars in the fleet. Under the proposed program, 106 new cars will be delivered between 2018 and 2019 and 261 cars will be delivered between 2020 and 2024.

PE 4705 EMERGENCY CAR LIGHTING, MET This project involves the upgrading of the current lighting and emergency lighting system on cab and trailer cars. The upgrade of the lighting system includes but is not limited to the replacement of the batteries, battery chargers, battery boxes and lighting components which will allow Metra to comply with the federallymandated 90-minute emergency light requirement. The upgrade will also include the replacement of low-level pathway markings, which is an FRA mandate.

PE 5008 MU CAR IMPROVEMENTS This project involves the purchase of parts and equipment that will be needed for the rehabilitation and restoration of the 26 electric cars that were ordered in 2002 and delivery began in 2004 and 2005.

PE 5009 CAR REHABILITATION (NIPPON SHARYO HIGHLINERS), MET This project involves the mid-life rehabilitation of up to 26 multiple-unit bi-level electric cars that are ADA compliant. The cars were built by the Nippon-Sharyo Corporation and delivery began in 2004 and 2005. This is the first major rehabilitation of these commuter cars.

PE 5010 DVRS AND CAMERAS, MET This project involves the purchase of a digital video recording (DVR) system. The system will replace the 10-year old, obsolete system currently running on Metra’s rolling stock. It will allow for video recording of railroad signal aspects and incidents.

Track and Structure

PE 5015 TIES AND BALLAST & SW HEATERS, BNS PE 5012 TIES AND BALLAST, MED PE 5018 TIES AND BALLAST, RID

These projects consist of the replacement of cross ties, switch ties and ballast. In order to maintain proper track gauge and surface, it is necessary to replace ties and ballast periodically. This improves the riding quality of the trains and reduces the incidence of slow orders, which adversely affect adherence to train schedules. These projects represent part of an ongoing program to replace ties and ballast throughout the commuter territory.

PE 5021 RAIL GRINDING, MET This project consists of on-site grinding of rail that has been recently installed at various locations. This includes second-hand rail, corrugated rail and in-track welded rail. Grinding removes mill scale and corrects irregularities from field and plant welding. Corrugation reduces the useful life of the rail and accelerates the deterioration of the rolling stock. Grinding creates a uniform rail profile and prevents corrugation.

PE 5027 RAIL, BNS This project will provide for the installation of rail and switches on the BNSF commuter line. The project also includes the renewal of switch points at various locations along the BNSF railroad, the replacement of switch machines and the replacement of turnouts. The high density of freight and commuter traffic, including extensive express service, requires close monitoring and periodic replacement of switches and switch machines. Turnouts must be inspected and replaced frequently to protect against derailment. While minor defects in switch points and turnouts can be remedied with field welding, replacement over time is required to ensure reliable operations.

PE 5025 UNDERCUTTING & SURFACING, MET PE 5026 UNDERCUTTING & SURFACING, MWD Track undercutting provides for the removal of all fouled track ballast, which is then cleaned and returned to the track bed. The major functions of ballast are to hold ties in place, prevent lateral deflections of the rail and distribute track loading. When the ballast is fouled, the load spreading capability is lost. Soggy ballast also freezes in winter, causing additional stress on the rail and tie systems. Undercutting is necessary when the ballast section has become so contaminated that normal ballasting and surfacing will no longer hold a proper track surface. The results of undercutting are a smooth, wellaligned track surface, extended tie and ballast life and reduced ongoing maintenance expense.

PE 5028 RAIL REPLACEMENT, MET This project consists of the installation of continuous welded rail on Metraowned rail lines. Specific locations are to be determined. The existing jointed rail shows increased wear as it nears the end of its economic service life and it requires periodic replacement to maintain track speeds and on-time performance.

PE 5033 RAIL REPLACEMENT, MWD This project consists of the installation of continuous welded rail on the Milwaukee District rail lines. Specific locations are to be determined. The existing jointed rail shows increased wear as it nears the end of its economic service life and it requires periodic replacement to maintain track speeds and on-time performance. P

E 5020 RAIL, NCS IMPROVEMENTS This project consists of the installation of rail, ties and ballast, undercutting and other capital improvements on the North Central Servic.

PE 5023 CROSSINGS (ROAD & TRACK), MET PE 5024 CROSSINGS (ROAD & TRACK), MWD These projects provide for the renewal of rail highway grade crossings at various locations on the Metra commuter lines and the Milwaukee District. The specific crossings to be renewed will be based on the stage of deterioration at each crossing. The work will include, but not be limited to, replacement of cross ties, crossing material and ballast, as well as the surfacing of the track.

PE 5038 BRIDGE AND RETAINING WALLS, BNS This project will provide for the rehabilitation of retaining walls on the BNSF commuter line. Retaining wall sections at intermittent locations along the right-of-way will be rehabilitated. This work typically includes complete reconstruction with steel sheet piling, concrete panels or bin wall to prevent retaining wall deterioration that can result in destabilization of the roadbed and in turn lead to track shifting.

PE 5039 BRIDGE IMPROVEMENTS, MWD This project involves the rehabilitation of bridges and culverts on the Milwaukee District lines. This work typically includes complete reconstruction with steel sheet piling, concrete panels or bin wall to prevent retaining wall deterioration that can result in destabilization of the roadbed and in turn lead to track shifting. Funding will be 50/50 split with the Canadian Pacific Railroad.

PE 5036 BRIDGE IMPROVEMENTS, MET This project involves concrete, timber and steel rehabilitation to bridges in the Metra system. Design work will also be done when necessary. Items that can be rehabilitated include timber wing walls and fencing, cracked bearing blocks and cracked and/or spalled bridge seats or abutments.

PE 5037 BRIDGE IMPROVEMENTS, UPR This project will provide for the rehabilitation of bridges on the Union Pacific commuter lines. This work typically includes complete reconstruction with steel sheet piling, concrete panels or bin wall to prevent retaining wall deterioration that can result in destabilization of the roadbed and in turn lead to track shifting.

PE 5048 ROW FENCING, UPR This project consists of the materials and labor necessary to erect fencing along the railroad right-of-way of the Union Pacific lines. Specific locations are determined based on field conditions and are subject to change.

PE 5029 CATENARY STRUCTURE REHAB, MED This project involves the ongoing rehabilitation of various catenary structures on Metra Electric District subdistricts, all originating in Chicago: the University Park subdistrict, the South Chicago subdistrict and the Blue Island subdistrict. This work typically involves rehabilitating structural steel, walkways, and concrete foundation pedestals. The work will depend on the results of condition assessments and the availability of track time to do the rehabilitation.

PE 5040 63RD - 67TH STREET BRIDGES, MED This project involves steel and concrete rehabilitation on Metra Electric District mainline bridges. This work typically involves removing deteriorated concrete from the underside of the deck, cleaning the existing structural steel and reinforcing steel and applying epoxy resin coating the underside of the deck.

SIGNAL, ELECTRICAL AND COMMUNICATIONS

PE 4343 POSITIVE TRAIN CONTROL, MET This project consists of the development and installation of a federally mandated Positive Train Control (PTC) system that integrates new technology with existing train control and operating systems to enhance train operations. This system will help prevent track authority violations, speed limit violations and unauthorized entry into work zones. The system will monitor and ensure the train crew’s compliance with all operating instructions, while a screen-based display will provide the train crew with additional operating. The system will also query wayside devices for broken rails, proper switch alignment and signal aspects in real time to provide improved train operation.

PE 4746 IMPEDANCE BONDS, MED This project involves replacing impedance bonds that are damaged, defective, or have insufficient negative return equipment and connections. The impedance bonds are a fundamental part of the track circuit. They control the current path and thus limit the power losses and assure proper function of the protective relays.

PE 5056 SIGNAL SYSTEM UPGRADES, MET This project will replace various signal infrastructures such as junction boxes, electrical cabinets, wiring, LED lights, etc. on an as needed basis when some part of the signal system is determined to be substandard upon inspection or failure. A large portion of Metra’s signal system infrastructure in the field has become obsolete. It is also affected by the extremes of weather common to the Chicago region.

PE 4744 PROTECTIVE RELAY REPLACEMENT, MED This project will replace the protective relay at all traction power substations. They will be replaced by electronic relays that are more reliable than the existing mechanical relays. The protective relay system protects the local breakers at these locations

PE 4742 STRAY CURRENT PROTECTION, MED The purpose of the project is to reestablish a path for the stray current between the steel catenary support structures and ground. The special grounding cable may be on the mainline and the South Chicago and Blue Island branches. All structures will be connected to this grounding cable.

PE 5032 SWITCH HEATERS, MET This project consists of 30 switchheaters control cabinets, and associated switch heaters. The new units are replacements and are electrically powered.

FACILITIES AND EQUIPMENT

PE 5053 YARD IMPROVEMENTS, BNS This project consists of several improvements at the 14th Street Yard and the Hill Yard. Improvements will include, but not be limited to an elevator for the 14th Street Shop building, stand by power at Hill yard and switch heaters at 14th Street Yard. PE 4965

YARD IMPROVEMENTS, RID This project is for the engineering and design of the 49th Street Diesel Shop on the Rock Island line to enable additional shift work for rail car and locomotive rehabilitation. Design could also include but not be limited to expanding office space, crew facilities and locker rooms. A transfer table could also be added.

PE 5076 YARD IMPROVEMENTS, MWD This project involves work at the Western Avenue Yard. Improvements will include replacing the roof on the shop building, grating and replacing boardwalks.

PE 5072 YARD IMPROVEMENTS, RID This project involves but not limited to replacing ties, crosswalks and platforms with steel grated platforms. Metra will purchase and install a wheel truing machine. The machine slowly rotates and grinds the surface of the rail car wheel to make them smooth and even.

PE 5070 POLICE VEHICLES, MET This project involves the purchase of vehicles to be utilized by Metra Police at various locations throughout the Metra system. FY 2016 FTA funds will be used for purchases and is 100 percent commuter share. The current condition of the equipment that is being replaced is poor, as it has reached or surpassed its useful life.

PE 5068 EQUIPMENT & VEHICLES- MECHANICAL, MET This project provides for the purchase and rehabilitation of vehicles and equipment to be utilized by Metra’s Mechanical and Engineering Departments. The vehicles and equipment purchased will replace various pieces of obsolete or inadequate support vehicles and equipment used to help service and maintain Metra’s fleet at the various yards. This includes but is not limited to supervisory vehicles for supervision of fieldwork, small pickup trucks, various forklift trucks and car movers. The existing equipment has surpassed its useful life.

PE 5066 OFFICE EQUIPMENT This project consists of the purchase of various pieces of equipment and office furniture that will be utilized at Metra storehouses and at the 547 W. Jackson building.

PE 5091 MOBILE APPLICATION, MET This project includes but is not limited to the implementation, launch and improvement of mobile applications on the Metra system that includes mobile ticketing, trip planning, account management and other related app features. This project may include the purchase of conductor handheld devices and printers, as well as training. All testing will be included in this project. It will include but not be limited to testing of onboard credit card sales and printing from home, as well as other types of app testing.

PE 5061 CREW OPTIMIZATION, MET This project is for the purchase of software that uses train schedules to determine the minimum amount of crews members needed to operate service. This software will be used with the new electronic crew calling system that helps Metra better comply with Passenger Hours of Service regulations for hours of service reporting requirements.

PE 5062 AUTOMATED PASSENGER COUNTS, MET This project is for a pilot program to guide the installation of Metra’s Automated Passenger Counting system. Metra will issue a letter of inquiry to retain a consultant that has knowledge of the state-of–the-art technology and data utilization. The project may have three components: consulting services, hardware purchases and the supporting software.

PE 5064 IT COMPONENTS & SERVICES, MET This project covers a systems upgrade for information technology infrastructure at Metra headquarters to be integrated with the financial system replacement and upgrade.

PE 4852 FINANCIAL SYSTEM REPLACEMENT, MET This project will provide funding for Metra to implement an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system that will be compliant with current financial system “best practices.” This system will support electronic data interchange, be fully extensible and upgradeable, use integrated highly flexible analytical reporting tools and support microcomputer/network-based software productivity tools.

PE 4771 547 BUILDING UPGRADES, MET This project will provide for various building improvements and upgrades to Metra central headquarters located at 547 W. Jackson Blvd. in Chicago. This project will improve the habitable space for visitors and workers at the building.

PE 4743 547 BUILDING IMPROVEMENTS, MET This project addresses electrical improvements at the 547 W. Jackson Building. Projects may include the installation of a stairwell pressurization system and the replacement of the building HVAC system. All work will comply with City of Chicago building code.

STATIONS AND PARKING

PE 5077 STATION SIGNS, MET The scope of this project consists of the installation of new station signs at Metra commuter stations. The signs will provide general information, station identification, and pathfinding directional guidance. They will be designed to comply with the American with Disabilitites Act (ADA). Modifications to the building structures are not anticipated.

PE 5078 SYSTEMWIDE STATION IMPROVEMENTS, MET This project element includes, but is not limited to, the rehabilitation of Metra station facilities, more specifically the rehabilitation or replacement of roofs, masonry, door & window replacement, concrete work, floors, ceilings, lighting, drainage, stairs, guardrails, handrails, benches, shelters, and canopies.

PE 5079 STATION FACILITY IMPROVEMENTS, MET This project element includes, but is not limited to, the replacement and/ or rehabilitation of station platforms, new lighting, and rehabilitation of access stairs, stair enclosures, shelters, and repair of warming shelters. Work to be performed may also include gatehouse/head house rehabilitation, replacement of leaking roofs, replacement of ceilings, and installation of new lighting, and other related work.

PE 5075 INNOVATIVE PLATFORM TREATMENTS, MET This is a demonstration project for the installation of heated platform technology for snow removal. This system would be used at stations with precast or composite platforms. It does lend itself to asphalt platforms.

PE 5067 ADA PLATFORMS & RAMPS, MET This project is part of Metra’s ongoing effort to bring commuter rail stations into compliance with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. This project identifies, at each key station, the specific work that will be done to bring the key stations into compliance. At these stations, existing platforms will be rehabilitated in order to allow deteriorated tactile surfaces to be replaced with the ADA-compliant “truncated dome” type surfaces.

PE 4878 WEST CHICAGO STATION UPR This project involves the rehabilitation of the West Chicago Station facility. The West Chicago Station facility is in need of rehabilitation work that includes addressing drainage and water leak issues, deteriorated platforms, lighting, ADA access rehabilitation and retaining wall work.

PE 5092 PROTECTIVE LAND ACQUISITION, MET Protective land acquisition is the acquisition of real property that includes but is not limited to property that is of significant importance to the administration of Metra, is near its ROW or adjacent to other Metra property.

PE 5080 RIVERSIDE STATION, BNS This project involves the rehabilitation of the Riverside Station facility. The Village of Riverside has received a grant from the Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program (ITEP) for roof replacement. FTA funding will finish the roof and begin rehabilitation of the stairs, ramps and railings.

PE 5081 WOODSTOCK STATION, UPR This project involves the rehabilitation of the Woodstock station facility. Work may include the design and construction of a larger enclosed inbound warming shelter. The shelter will have more amenities than the current one, including a door, lighting and on-demand heat. Other work to be done may include but is not limited to rehabilitation of the station roof, masonry rehab and new platforms.

PE 4994 INFRASTRUCTURE ENGINEERING, MET This project funds various engineering responsibilities for capital projects. Metra’s Engineering Department as well as consultant engineers provide support to capital projects. The associated professional consultant services include design engineering and/or construction management in the areas of civil, structural, electrical, mechanical, signal, communications and environmental engineering.

SUPPORT ACTIVITIES

PE 5097 LOCALLY FUNDED PROJECTS/MATCH, MET Metra farebox capital funds will be used to fund projects locally, and to provide local “matching” funds for alternate funding sources in order to supplement and advance the system’s capital program needs.

PE 5096 UNANTICIPATED CAPITAL, MET This project is a reserve of funds available for capital projects that arise throughout the year. Federal grant funds and other grant monies nearly always require local matching funds. Having the local match available will allow Metra to better leverage federal funds when grant opportunities become available. This project will also allow Metra to fully fund capital projects out of Metra dollars.

PE 5098 PROJECT ADMINISTRATION, MET This project funds the activities associated with the administration of capital grants and the projects in those grants. This includes only those labor, fringe and overhead costs covered by Metra’s cost allocation plan. Examples of the types of activities associated with the administration of capital grants are budget revisions, requisitions, quarterly reports and reconciliation of expenses done at project closeout. Metra funds associated with capital grant administration are recognized as capitalized costs under Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP).

PE 5099 CONTINGENCIES, MET This project will fund emergencies and unanticipated capital needs that arise throughout the course of the program year. Items covered under this project require immediate attention and can’t wait for inclusion in the budget for the forthcoming program year. Contingencies are necessary to fund emergency activities to prevent project and service delays.

PE 5094 INFRASTRUCTURE ENGINEERING, MET This project funds various engineering responsibilities for capital projects. Metra’s Engineering Department as well as consultant engineers provide support to capital projects. The associated professional consultant services include design engineering and/or construction management in the areas of civil, structural, electrical, mechanical, signal, communications and environmental engineering.