Did You Know?
Airport Connector would benefit more than just air travelers
Imagine if you could get from Midway to O’Hare in less than 40 minutes on public transit.
Currently, that trip takes well over an hour and involves transferring from the Orange to the Blue Line in the Loop before coming all the way back west towards O’Hare. Building the Airport Connector Express, one of 10 expansion projects in our Transit Future vision, could cut the travel time between Chicago’s two airports in half.
The benefit to business travelers and tourists looking to transfer flights is the most obvious benefit of the project, but definitely not the only one. Even more importantly, the line would connect communities across western Cook County to the two major job centers, greatly boosting job access and opportunities for many working class families. It could also reduce traffic congestion on highways and major arterial streets as more people choose to ride transit as it becomes a more convenient option.
The proposed line would stop in La Grange, Bellwood, Franklin Park and six other locations, in addition to both airports.
These communities and many others like them are not well served by the current hub-and-spoke model of the region’s transit system. Some are connected to downtown by suburban Metra service but we know not all jobs are located downtown.
If we are going to truly grow the percentage of all trips taken by transit in Chicagoland, we need to better connect communities across the region, and the Airport Connector Express would be a good place to start.
The project has been discussed for years but has failed to move forward due to a lack of funding. If the Cook County Board establishes a revenue stream for transit expansion like we call for in Transit Future, it could become a much more realistic possibility.
Check out the Airport Connector Express page on the Transit Future website for more details about the benefits of the project.
This is the third post in our 10 lines, 5 weeks blog series. Each week from now until Labor Day, we’ll take a look at two lines in the Transit Future vision and make the case for why the county board should take action to expand the rapid transit network in Cook County.
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