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Metra Up North Project Update

Metra is planning to replace the railroad viaducts along the Union Pacific North Line between Fullerton and Addison. These viaducts are over 100-years-old and have reached the end of their engineering life span. This work is a continuation of the replacements that Metra has completed north of Addison over the past few years. The current project schedule calls for the work to begin mid-2024.


I have been working with stakeholders including constituents adjacent to the railroad right-of-way, neighborhood community organizations, and other elected officials to ensure that concerns regarding landscaping, retaining walls, noise, vibrations, construction logistics, and others are addressed. My office has participated in both open public house meetings and meetings in the field with individual resident groups.


The project involves the removal of many trees on railroad property along the corridor. I've stressed the need to restore and enhance the tree canopy along the tracks. My office is working with Metra to get as robust a tree canopy in place as possible. We are also working with the project team to achieve enhancements in the design of retaining walls and other aspects of the work.


The Metra project team provided the update below. Please contact my office with questions or concerns.


Project Status

Metra has been working diligently on project updates over the past year. Following the public meeting in April 2022, Metra carefully reviewed all public comments, identified feasible design adjustments to address these comments, secured additional funding for the project, and completed the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) environmental review.


Engineering and design development are still underway with construction anticipated to begin in 2024. As design and engineering progress, Metra will continue coordinating with Union Pacific, community stakeholders, and adjacent residents on further project details.


Proposed Design Adjustments

Based on further analysis and community feedback, the following design adjustments are being implemented where feasible along the project corridor:

  • Offset the west side retaining wall at least two feet east from the property line where immediately adjacent to residential property between Belmont and south of Diversey

  • Install solid safety barriers above the west side retaining wall, where immediately adjacent to residential property from Belmont to south of Diversey (height and materials will be determined at a later date)

  • Repave and restore roadway and sidewalks under every new bridge (previously only included at four bridge locations)

  • Install lighting improvements under the Addison bridge (similar improvements were already planned at other bridges)

  • Include additional landscaping improvements in areas adjacent to the railroad

  • Community input will be sought to develop landscape concepts, including options to enhance the tree canopy and options for residents to consider when restoring areas required for temporary easements. This community-focused design effort builds upon past work, including input gathered from the April 2022 public meeting.

Public Outreach

Metra will reach out to residents immediately adjacent to the west side of the railroad from Belmont to south of Diversey to discuss further project details and the need for temporary easements. Input from community stakeholders will also be sought to identify further community-friendly design improvements along the corridor. Prior to construction, a public meeting will take place to notify the community of construction-related activities.

Updated Website

The project website has been updated and will continue to be updated as the project progresses. Additionally, the NEPA environmental review document has been made available for the public on the website at metra.com/UPNrebuild.



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