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Weekly Newsletter: Major Progress in Chicago

April 13, 2015

The future of passenger trains in the Midwest looks even brighter than it did this time last week.

Last Friday, some of Illinois’s most influential leaders came together to announce funding for the “Terminal Planning Study”. The study will look at how improve access into and through Chicago’s Union Station.

The plan - touted by Mayor Emanuel, Sen. Durbin, Sen. Kirk, Rep. Lipinski and Rep. Quigley – will improve passenger flows through Union Station, unclog bottlenecks in the Chicago area and allow for greater capacity. This is an essential step in a planned $500 million renovation of Union Station.

At MHSRA, we’re glad to see such strong support for this critical project. The upgrades will affect Metra, Amtrak and potential high-speed rail – with direct impacts felt by millions of people across the entire Midwest.

The study will also address many of the key infrastructure upgrades needed for CrossRail Chicago.

It’s encouraging to see support for this issue from major players in both parties. Building a clear path for passenger trains through Chicago and Union Station has been the number one challenge we’ve faced in recent years. This study clears is a significant step to improving existing services, expanding transit – and one day introducing true high-speed rail.

At MHSRA, we look forward to doing everything we can to help this process along.

All the best,

Julius Parod
Manager of Communications

Last Week at MHSRA:

Executive Director attended the big announcement of funding for planning work of the Chicago Terminal District at Union Station on Friday.

We’ve been sending out press releases and have generated a lot of media attention in Illinois about proposed cuts to Amtrak. Check out a few of the articles here:

Illinois Business Journal
Progress Illinois
The Southern
Galesburg Register Mail
Annatopia News

MHSRA representatives joined transit advocates and Illinois political leaders, including Senator Durbin and Congressman Quigley, at the Stand Up For Transportation rally at Union Station. Read more about the event here.

We’re gathering support for CrossRail on Chicago’s South Side. Check out our new flyer.

Articles We Enjoyed:

Union Station overhaul inches forward with $7 million in planning grants
“[Mayor] Emanuel said [a revitalized Union Station] could ‘unlock $7 billion in economic growth.’”

State, feds reach deal to keep Amtrak route in Indiana
“It’s encouraging to see all parties involved come together to put the people of Indiana first”, said MHSRA’s Rick Harnish.

Rep. Lipinksi Helps Lead Push on Funding for Public Transportation
Lipinski is working with other Illinois Congressional leaders for a multi-year highway and transit bill.

Senate Bill Targeting Bullet Train Project Advances
Texas is facing similar issues as California. Tell your friends in Texas to tell their representatives to stand up for progress.

Neighborhood walkability is good for commercial real estate bottom line
Another reason why investments in public transportation benefit everyone.

Saudi Arabia to test first phase of high-speed railway
Trains will hit top speeds of 281 mph!

Upcoming Events:

April 29th - Illinois Rail and Tranist Summit in Springfield, IL. We’re inviting allies across Illinois to show how important trains are to their communities. Join us in Springfield to demonstrate your support.

A donation of $15 or more today will go directly towards educating elected officials. Can you help us move forward in 2015?

Julius Parod
Midwest High Speed Rail Association
4765 N. Lincoln Ave.
Chicago, IL 60625
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