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South Side Residents Hope Red Line Extension Will Bring 'Activity And Hopefully Development'

CHICAGO (CBS) -- The CTA Red Line expansion is closer to reality, thanks to Congress' new massive infrastructure bill.

CBS 2's Jim Williams reports, residents hope it'll help local businesses bring in more traffic and give commuters a shorter ride to where they need to go.

Ledall Edwards' store has sold a wide variety of clothes since 1974 when Edwards Fashions was started by his father.

"Full haberdashery, including overcoats."

What was the street like back in 1974? Busy with people shopping from store to store.

"Bustling. A lot of pedestrian traffic. A lot of store fronts. It was great."

Today, though Edwards is still here, the stretch of Michigan Avenue near 113th and Roseland has fallen on hard times.

"Right now it's down to just a trickle of what it was," he said.

Edwards welcomes the CTA's Red Line extension, which would add an L station within walking distance of his store.

"It's going to bring traffic. It's going to be activity and hopefully development," Edwards said.

Now that Congress has passed the trillion dollar infrastructure bill, the CTA believes the Red Line extension will finally be built.

"We are very confident will be able to get funding sources needed to see this project become a reality."

The CTA's Leah Mooney said the estimated $2.3 billion dollar cost would be split. Half is funded by the federal government and half by local sources.

Construction would start in 2025 and scheduled to be finished in 2029.

The CTA 95th Street station is the last stop on the South Side for the Red Line. The extension would take trains another 5.6 miles southeast and include four new stations: At 103rd, 111th, Michigan Avenue and 130th Street where the Red Line would end.

"This is a desert here now."

It would a longer commute for Dr. Reverend David Bryant's neighbors and church members.

"So you've got to get early, early, early in the morning, catch two buses to get to 95th and the Red Line," Bryant said.

The Red Line Extension, from years of planning, to possible completion by the end of the decade.

The Red Line Extension—a transformative project that will benefit Chicago's Far South Side for generations to come -- is...

Posted by Chicago Transit Authority on Tuesday, November 16, 2021
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