Quigley Visits Chicago Union Station for Tour, Infrastructure Discussion with Amtrak
CHICAGO – U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05), a member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD), joined Amtrak leadership at Chicago Union Station to discuss transportation infrastructure plans, improvement projects and accessibility priorities for the city of Chicago’s railways as part of his “Mike on the Move” initiative.
“Safe, reliable, and affordable transportation options are essential in ensuring the continued prosperity of our city and our nation,” said Rep. Quigley. “Having the opportunity to see the progress on improvement projects for Chicago transportation firsthand highlights how critical these long-term, forward-thinking investments are in our efforts to modernize our infrastructure, which will help people and goods travel more safely and efficiently, all while reducing congestion, creating jobs, and stimulating local economies.”
“We are proud of the progress we’ve made with improvements for all the users of the station, Amtrak customers and Metra passengers alike,” said Ray Lang, President of the Amtrak-owned Chicago Union Station Co. “We are in a Master Plan process to study the next steps toward remaking the transportation elements of the station, in partnership with the city of Chicago, Metra and the RTA.”
During his tour, Rep. Quigley discussed the master plan for Chicago Union Station renovations with station leadership and toured the recent restoration of the Burlington Room, which previously served as the women’s lounge, as well as the new metropolitan lounge and the transit center. Currently, the design phase of the master plan is thirty percent complete.
Rep. Quigley joins Suzanne Mosher, Senior Manager of Infrastructure Planning at Amtrak, and Paul Sanders, Senior Manager Facilities Management for Amtrak to discuss upcoming plans to continue expanding Union Station’s accommodations.
“Our increase in passenger counts mean we’ve outgrown the 1990’s configuration of the concourse level and we need to better accommodate both our ridership and Metra’s, today and in the future,” said Lang, who is also a Senior Director of Government Affairs at Amtrak.
Amtrak operates more than 300 trains each day to more than 500 destinations across 21,000 route miles. Last year, Amtrak hosted over 30.8 million passengers – with an average of 84,600 each day – representing the fifth straight year in which ridership has exceeded 30 million.
Rep. Quigley’s “Mike on the Move” initiative emphasizes how the federal government can support transportation and infrastructure investments. Previous “Mike on the Move” events highlighted Pace Route 301’s integration of Chicago suburbs, commercial transportation through UPS’ Chicago Area Consolidation Hub, the 606 bike and pedestrian trail shortly after it re-opened, Chicago’s Metra system’s century old switching tower, and Chicago’s notorious rail congestion.
As Illinois’ only member on the House Appropriations Committee, Rep. Quigley has pushed for a long-term surface transportation bill and prioritized Chicago-area infrastructure investments as a member of the Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD). He has helped secure $100 million in Core Capacity Grants to benefit CTA, $450 million in TIGER grants to help reduce congestion and create ad 21st century highway and public transit system in Illinois, and nearly $200 million to help complete installment of Positive Train Control safety systems for commuter railroads