CTA To Spend Over $200 Million On Upgraded Bus Fleet, Other Improvements

CHICAGO (CBS) — The Chicago Transit Authority is setting aside $205 million to rehabilitate and modernize the agency’s bus and rail maintenance facilities.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Lisa Fielding reports, CTA President Forrest Claypool says the project is much-needed.

“Conditions of these facilities are so poor that we use extra staff to make up for the inadequate equipment that can neither support more modern vehicles, nor accommodate the space needed for the expanding fleet,” Claypool said at a news conference at the Kedzie Garage, at 358 S. Kedzie Ave. in the East Garfield Park neighborhood.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel says the CTA upgrade project will also include fleet, which has not been updated since 1982.

“And we’re finally going to order about 1,400 new buses,” Emanuel said. “Four hundred of them are totally new; 1,000 are totally going to be rebuilt, literally, from the brakes up.”

In all, the project will create 500 jobs. The repairs and improvements will begin next year, and will continue through 2015.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Lisa Fielding reports

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