Beginning Monday, Sept. 11, the midday express service schedule on Metra’s Rock Island Line will revert to local service, ending a yearlong pilot program that offered midday express service between Blue Island and Chicago. There are other minor adjustments to the weekday schedule; there are no changes to the weekend schedule. You can view the new outbound weekday schedule here and the new inbound weekday schedule here.
In 2016, Metra partnered with the RTA on a pilot project to provide midday express service on the Rock Island Line. The service added three inbound express trains between Blue Island and Chicago and two outbound express trains shortening travel time for suburban riders by 15 to 20 minutes. One midday express train will remain. Train 518, which departs Joliet at 2:21 p.m. and expresses from Blue Island Vermont Street to La Salle Street Station, will continue to operate.
“Unfortunately, we weren’t able to achieve ridership numbers that made the midday express service financially sustainable,” said Metra Executive Director/CEO Don Orseno. “We will continue to explore cost effective ways to enhance service on all our lines.”
In addition to the discontinuation of the midday express service, there will be additional minor adjustments to the Rock Island weekday schedule starting Sept. 11. The schedule changes are being implemented to facilitate passenger transfers and better reflect operating conditions. They include:
- Train 406 will depart Joliet and all stations en route two minutes earlier to facilitate transfers to the Metra Electric Blue Island train at 6:55 a.m.
- Train 600’s scheduled arrival time at LaSalle Street Station will be adjusted to add three minutes. The train will now be scheduled to arrive at 6:07 a.m.
- Inbound Train 718 will be renumbered as Train 618 and will depart Blue Island/Vermont Street at 3:23 p.m. and make all stops, arriving at LaSalle Street Station at 4:11 p.m.
- Minor run time adjustments will be made to Train 413, which departs LaSalle Street Station at 4:57 p.m.
Printed schedules will be available the week of Sept. 4.