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Capital Projects

Current Capital Program 2017

Metra’s 2017 capital program is funded through $171 million in Federal Formula/State of Good Repair funds. Other funding sources that supplement Metra’s capital program include $4.0 million in federal CMAQ (Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality) funding and $4.98 million in ICE funds. The plan also calls for increasing Metra’s fares allocated to the capital program, from $15.6 million to $29.1 or $32.1 million.
 
The RTA is providing $67.5 million in State of Good Repair Bonds in 2017. These funds will be used for the procurement of new railcars ($15 million) and to rehabilitate 43 railcars built in 1974 and last rehabbed in the 1990s ($10 million). An additional $23 million will go toward continuing the rehabilitation of the Union Pacific North Line bridges, while $10 million will be spent on upgrading four tie stations into electric substations, allowing for faster trains on the Metra Electric Line, and $5.5 million will go to Positive Train Control. The $71.1 million in 2020 will be split among new gallery cars, UP North Line bridges and station improvements.
 
Metra must submit to the RTA a balanced one- and five-year capital program. As part of the 2017 program, 53 percent to 54 percent percent of the capital funding will be allocated to major capital projects, including:
 

Railcar rehabilitation                   $31.7 million   

Locomotive rehabilitation            $31.5 million   

New railcars                                $15.0 million       

Positive Train Control (PTC)       $30.5 million        

UP North Line bridges                $23.0 million   

49th St. Rehabilitation facility     $20.0 million         

Line Abbreviations

  • 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

 

2017 CAPITAL PROGRAM PROJECT DESCRIPTIONS

ROLLING STOCK

 

5011 LOCOMOTIVE REHAB F59, 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 harsh winter weather on aged equipment.

 

5101 TRACTION MOTORS-REBUILD, MET

This project funds the overhaul of locomotive traction motors and traction alternators as well as auxiliary generators and head-end-power alternators. The overhauled equipment will be used on locomotives throughout the Metra system. These traction motors and alternators were originally placed in service between 1974 and 2003 and are showing signs of deterioration. A basic overhaul is required to return these motors to an acceptable level of performance.

 

4510 CAR REHABILITATION, MET

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

 

5102 COMMUTER CAR AND LOCOMOTIVE

IMPROVEMENTS, MET

This project involves various improvements to diesel-hauled and electric commuter cars, as well as locomotives. These improvements may be identified at the start of a major rehabilitation project, or during routine maintenance or inspection.

 

5103 WHEEL REPLACEMENT, MET

This project will implement the FRA-mandated replacement of wheel sets on Metra’s fleet of locomotives and railcars. The replacement wheels will be used on vehicles used throughout the Metra system as part of an ongoing program to overhaul major components on Metra’s fleet.

 

5106 VEHICLE INSPECTION SYSTEM, MET

This project would install a system on the Metra Electric Line that uses visual and ultrasonic tools to provide real-time inspection of rolling stock. The system would use strategically placed high-speed cameras and ultrasonic scanning devices to inspect rail equipment and identify issues while rolling stock is in service.

 

4507 LOCOMOTIVE REHABILITATION, MET

This project involves the second major rehabilitation of 42 locomotives (units 174-214) which were delivered between 1989 and 1992 and is part of an ongoing rehabilitation program. The project is expected to extend the life of the locomotives by 10 to 13 years and will reduce fuel consumption and emissions.

 

5105 LOCOMOTIVE REHABILITATION, MET

This project involves the second major rehabilitation of 42 locomotives (units 174-214) which were delivered between 1989 and 1992 and is part of an ongoing rehabilitation program. The project is expected to extend the life of the locomotives by 10 to 13 years and will reduce fuel consumption and emissions.

 

5006 NEW GALLERY CARS, MET

This proposed long-term railcar program will purchase 367 new diesel cars. This purchase will be used to replace 318 cars with an average age of 43 years, increase the number of spare cars by 49 and retire the oldest cars in the fleet.

 

4909 CAR REHAB (NIPPON SHARYO, P1), MET

This project involves the mid-life rehabilitation of 302 bilevel railcars delivered between 2002 and 2008. This phase consists of 11 cab cars and 19 trailer/coach cars built by the Nippon Sharyo Corporation and represents Phase 1 of a multi-phase project.

 

5007 CAR REHAB, (NIPPON SHARYO, P-2), MET

This project involves the mid-life rehabilitation of 302 bilevel railcars delivered between 2006 and 2008. This phase consists of 11 cab cars and 19 trailer/coach cars built by5 the Nippon Sharyo Corporation and represents Phase 2 of a multi-phase project.

 

5010 DVRS AND CAMERAS, MET

This project involves the purchase of a digital video recording (DVR) system for Metra’s rolling stock. The digital system will replace the 10-year old, obsolete system currently in use and will allow for video recording of railroad signal aspects and incidents.

 

TRACK AND STRUCTURE

 

5111 TIES AND BALLAST AND SW HEATERS, BNS

5112 TIES AND BALLAST, MED

5113 TIES AND BALLAST, MWD

5115 TIES AND BALLAST, UPR

These projects consist of the replacement of cross ties, switch ties and ballast and are part of ongoing efforts to replace ties and ballast on all the lines where Metra service operates. Ties and ballast must be replaced periodically to maintain proper track gauge and surface. This improves the riding quality of the trains and reduces the incidence of slow orders, which negatively impact train schedules. These projects represent part of an ongoing program to replace ties and ballast throughout the commuter service.

 

5117 RAIL GRINDING, MED

These projects consist of on-site grinding of rail that has been recently installed at various locations. Grinding removes mill scale, corrugation and corrects irregularities from field and plant welding creating a uniform rail profile. A rough rail profile can reduce the useful life of the rail and accelerate the deterioration of rolling stock.

 

5122 UNDERCUTTING AND SURFACING, MED

5126 UNDERCUTTING AND SURFACING, MWD

5124 UNDERCUTTING AND SURFACING, RID

5125 UNDERCUTTING AND SURFACING, UPR

Track undercutting provides for the removal, cleaning and replacement of fouled track ballast. When the ballast is fouled by mud and other debris, its load spreading capability is lost.

The process is used when normal ballasting and surfacing will no longer hold a proper track surface. The results of undercutting are a smooth, well-aligned track surface, extended tie and ballast life and reduced ongoing maintenance expense.

 

5123 UNDERCUTTING AND SURFACING, MWD

Track undercutting provides for the removal, cleaning and replacement of fouled track ballast. When the ballast is fouled by mud and other debris, its load spreading capability is lost.

The process is used when normal ballasting and surfacing will no longer hold a proper track surface. The results of undercutting are a smooth, well-aligned track surface, extended tie and ballast life and reduced ongoing maintenance expense. This is a 50/50 project in partnership with the Canadian Pacific Railway.

 

5127 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 as well as the replacement of switch machines and turnouts. The high density of freight and commuter traffic along the BNSF line, including extensive express service, requires close monitoring and periodic replacement of switches, switch machines and turnouts.

 

5128 RAIL, MED

5130 RAIL, MWD

5131 RAIL, RID

5132 RAIL, UPR

These projects consist of the installation of continuous welded rail on Metra-owned rail lines and the Union Pacific rail lines Specific locations are to be determined. Rail requires periodic replacement to maintain track speeds and on-time performance.

 

5129 RAIL (INTRACK WELDING 50/50), MWD

This project consists of the removal of defective rail, replacing those sections with new rail and welding the rail inplace on the Milwaukee District West Line. This will be a 50/50 project with

the Canadian Pacific Railway.

 

5120 NCS IMPROVEMENTS, NCS

This project consists of the installation of rail, ties and ballast, undercutting, and other capital improvements on the North Central Service (NCS) line.

 

5133 J LINE SIDING, MWD

This project consists of the construction of a siding between Rondout and Libertyville on the

Milwaukee District North Line. The siding will provide increased operational flexibility on a 17-mile section of single track between Rondout and Fox Lake.

 

5134 CROSSINGS (ROAD AND TRACK), MED

5135 CROSSINGS (ROAD AND TRACK), RID

5137 CROSSINGS (ROAD AND TRACK), UPR

5143 CROSSINGS (ROAD AND TRACK), MWD

These projects provide for the renewal of rail highway grade crossings at various locations on Metra and Union Pacific rail lines. The specific crossings to be renewed will be identified based on the stage of deterioration. 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.

 

5136 CROSSINGS (ROAD AND TRACK), MWD

This project provides for the renewal of rail highway grade crossings at various locations on the Milwaukee District North and West lines. The specific crossings to be renewed will be identified based on the stage of deterioration. 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. This is a 50/50 project in partnership with the Canadian Pacific Railway.

 

5138 BRIDGE AND RETAINING WALLS, BNS

This project will provide for the rehabilitation of retaining walls on the BNSF commuter line. Retaining wall sections at various locations along the right-of-way will be rehabilitated. This work typically includes complete reconstruction of the wall section with steel sheet piling, concrete panels or bin wall. Retaining wall maintenance is crucial to preventing deterioration

that can result in destabilization of the roadbed.

 

5139 BRIDGE IMPROVEMENTS, MED

5140 BRIDGE IMPROVEMENTS, MWD

5141 BRIDGE IMPROVEMENTS, RID

5142 BRIDGE IMPROVEMENTS, UPR

This project involves the rehabilitation of bridges and culverts on Metra and Union Pacific rail lines. This work typically includes complete reconstruction with steel sheet piling, concrete panels or bin wall to prevent deterioration that can result in destabilization of the roadbed.

 

2112 NORTH LINE BRIDGES, UPR

This project involves the replacement of 11 bridges on the Union Pacific North Line in Chicago, from Grace to Balmoral streets. The scope of work includes, but is not limited to, replacement of existing stone abutments, retaining wall construction, steel spans and decks. Also, all new track work will be accomplished between the bridges, including the replacement of wood ties with concrete ties. The Ravenswood Station will be rebuilt making the station platforms ADA accessible.

 

5144 CATENARY STRUCTURE REHAB, MED

This project involves the ongoing rehabilitation of various catenary structures on the Metra Electric District Sub Districts, all originating in Chicago: the University Park Sub District, the South Chicago Sub District, and the Blue Island Sub District. This work typically involves rehabilitating structural steel, walkways and concrete foundation pedestals. The work locations will depend on the results of condition assessments.

 

SIGNAL, ELECTRICAL & COMMUNICATIONS

 

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 information. The system will also query wayside devices for broken rails, proper switch alignment and signal aspects in real time to provide improved train operation.

 

5145 SIGNAL SYSTEM UPGRADES, MED

5146 SIGNAL SYSTEM UPGRADES, MWD

5147 SIGNAL SYSTEM UPGRADES, RID

This project will replace various signal infrastructure 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.

 

5149 LAKE STREET INTERLOCKER, UPR

This project consists of the modernization and upgrading of the Lake Street interlocker at the north end of the Ogilvie Transportation Center (OTC). It will replace track, track bed, switches, switch machines, switch heaters, dwarf signals and signal cable for the remaining facilities.

In the future, the interlocking control machine in Lake Street Tower will be replaced by modern equipment.

 

4254 TRACTION POWER SYSTEM AUGMENTATION, MED

This project consists of converting four tie stations into electrical substations with substantially greater power, and installing a new prefabricated substation at 31st Street. The tie stations will be converted to substations by adding 12 Kilovolt (KV) switchgear, transformers and rectifiers. The new equipment will be housed in prefabricated metal buildings. With these improvements, Metra’s new Electric District Highliner cars will possess the electrical power required to accelerate faster, and provide sufficient traction power to allow them to increase their maximum operating speed.

 

4842 16TH STREET INTERLOCKER, RID

This project will replace the 16th Street interlocker with a modern solid-state automated electronic system. The 16th Street interlocking plant consists of an obsolete manual interlocker with two outdated hand lever machines built in 1901 and 1929. There are no manufacturers of spare or replacement equipment for these machines. If the interlocker fails, it is difficult and time consuming to rebuild the parts and make any repairs.

 

5151 FIBER OPTIC, MED

This project consists of the replacement of the coaxial cable and copper cable used to conduct voice and signal data on the Metra Electric District’s South Chicago and Blue Island branches with fiber optic cable.

 

5152 FIBER OPTIC, MWD

5153 FIBER OPTIC, RID

This project is for the design of the installation of a fiber optic network used for the transmission of voice, signal data, corporate data, video and PTC data along the Metra Milwaukee North and West Lines and the Rock Island District. All communication lines are currently point-to-point leased lines from AT&T at a cost of approximately $510,000 per year.

 

5154 RADIO DISPATCHING SYSTEM, MET

This project will replace the existing radio dispatching system at the Consolidated Control Facility with an upgraded system. The existing system has become obsolete and difficult to maintain.

 

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.

 

FACILITES AND EQUIPMENT

 

5155 YARD IMPROVEMENTS, BNS

This project consists of several improvements at the 14th Street Yard. Improvements will include, but not be limited to: the crew facility at 14th Street and cable reel covers.

 

5156 YARD IMPROVEMENTS, MED

This project will include, but not be limited to: replacing ties, crosswalks and platforms with steel-grated platforms and placing electric tubular heaters on the switch machines at the Metra Electric yards.

 

5157 YARD IMPROVEMENTS, MWD

Upgrades under this project will include, but are not limited to the installation of electric heating elements for switches and the installation of steel-grated boardwalks at the Western Avenue Yard. Track work would include rail, ties, ballast and switches.

4972 YARD IMPROVEMENTS, RID

This project includes but is not limited to the rehabilitation of the 49th Street Shop on the Rock Island Line to enable additional shift work for railcar and locomotive rehabilitation. Work could also include expanding office space, crew facilities and locker rooms. A transfer table could also be added.

 

5158 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, which rotates and grinds the surface of the railcar wheel to make them smooth and even.

 

5159 YARD IMPROVEMENTS, RID

This project involves but is not limited to Metra installing a sprinkler system at the diesel and coach shop buildings, new 12 Kilowatt power distribution switchgear and underground duct banks. The project also includes new lighting and wayside power system in the upper yard.

 

5160 YARD IMPROVEMENTS, UPR

This project consists of improvements to existing yard and shop facilities at various locations on the Metra system belonging to the Union Pacific Railroad. The improvements will include but are not limited to: the continued rehabilitation of yard water, air and fueling systems. Also included will be upgrades to the car washer, the replacement of the high pressure steam boiler with a low pressure steam boiler, installation of an overhead crane at M19A and the rehabilitation of the roof also at M19A.

 

5161 RIGHT-OF-WAY EQUIPMENT, MET

This project involves the purchase of various pieces of equipment to be used by Metra’s Engineering Department, including end loaders, track backhoes and hi-rail equipment for track inspection.

 

5162 EQUIPMENT AND VEHICLES- MECHANICAL, MET

These projects provide for the purchase and rehabilitation of vehicles and equipment to be used by Metra’s Mechanical and Engineering Departments. The new vehicles and equipment will replace various pieces that have surpassed their useful life and includes vehicles for supervision of fieldwork, small pickup trucks, various forklift trucks and car movers.

 

5163 POLICE VEHICLES, MET

This project involves the purchase of vehicles to be used by Metra Police at various locations throughout the Metra system. The current equipment has reached or surpassed its useful life.

 

5169 STORAGE EQUIPMENT, MET

This project involves the purchase of storage equipment, including but not limited to vertical units and racks for the Materials Department for use at various Metra facilities.

 

5164 OFFICE EQUIPMENT

This project consists of the purchase of various pieces of equipment and office furniture that will be used at Metra storehouses and Metra’s headquarters.

 

5165 IT COMPONENTS AND 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.

 

5167 547 BUILDING SYS IMPROVEMENTS, MET

This project addresses electrical improvements at Metra’s headquarters. Projects may include the installation of a stairwell pressurization system and the replacement of the building’s HVAC system. All work will comply with city of Chicago building code.

 

5171 GPS/TRAIN TRACKER, MET

This project involves the replacement of the current GPS, which has exceeded its useful life. Metra will replace the GPS, on-board announcement system and signs on the entire fleet. Metra will also install automatic passenger counters and new event recorders. The new system will maintain the necessary current functions, while potentially adding video surveillance and customer information displays.

 

4368 REVENUE ACCOUNTING SYSTEM, MET

This project will provide for Metra to complete the new revenue accounting system to incorporate it into the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. This system will support electronic data exchange and be highly flexible.

 

4852 FINANCIAL SYSTEM REPLACEMENT, MET

This project will provide funding for Metra to implement an 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.

 

5060 CCF FIRE PROTECTION, MET

This project consists of the installation of a Clean Agent Fire Suppression System that will minimize damage from a fire. The Clean Agent Fire Suppression System uses a gaseous agent rather than water to diffuse fires. It is also an innovative approach to fire protection that protect the employees, assets, records and equipment that are mission-critical to Metra.

 

STATIONS AND PARKING

 

4784 VAN BUREN STREET STATION, MED

This project involves rehabilitation of the Van Buren Street station facility. Work to be performed includes, but is not limited to, rehabilitating the access tunnel, stairs, elevators and other related facilities.

 

5177 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 and window replacement, concrete work, floors, ceilings, lighting, drainage, stairs, guardrails, handrails, benches, shelters and canopies.

 

5179 STATION FACILITY IMPROVEMENTS, MET

This project includes 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.

 

5175 ADA PLATFORMS AND RAMPS, MET

This project is part of Metra’s ongoing effort to bring train stations into compliance with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. This project identifies the specific work that will be done to bring key stations into compliance. At these stations, existing platforms will be rehabilitated in order to allow deteriorated tactile surfaces to be replaced with ADA-compliant truncated dome-type surfaces.

5176 LUMINOUS PLATFORM SIGNS, MET

The project includes the design, fabrication, installation and three years of warranty and maintenance of thin paneled, luminous platform signs at up to six Metra stations. The prototype luminous platform signs would be an innovative evolution and enhancement of Metra’s existing signs.

 

4983 HOMEWOOD STATION, MED

This project involves the rehabilitation of the Homewood Station and associated intermodal facilities. The scope of work may include, but is not limited to, general tunnel rehabilitation, tunnel drainage solutions, elevator and stair improvements, addition of a pedestrian ramp into the tunnel on the west end of the station, platform improvements, warming shelter and head house improvements and improvements to the Pace and Amtrak facilities.

 

SUPPORT ACTIVITIES

 

5189 INFRASTRUCTURE ENGINEERING, MET

5190 INFRASTRUCTURE ENGINEERING, BNS

5191 INFRASTRUCTURE ENGINEERING, MED

5192 INFRASTRUCTURE ENGINEERING, MWD

5193 INFRASTRUCTURE ENGINEERING, RID

5194 INFRASTRUCTURE ENGINEERING, UPR

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

 

5195 ENGINEERING ASSET MANAGEMENT, MET

This project funds the continuation of Metra’s comprehensive asset assessment and includes hiring a consultant to assist with the preparation of Metra’s Transit Asset Management Plan as required by the Federal Transit Administration.

 

5196 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 allows 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.

 

5197 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.

 

5095 METRA CAPITAL FUNDING, MET

This project will provide Metra Capital Funding for necessary projects. They may include but not be limited to modernization projects such as rolling stock purchases, yard improvements, and PTC.

 

5198 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).

 

5199 CONTINGENCIES, MET

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

 

 
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