CHICAGO (CBS) — The CTA’s proposed 2015 budget is out and it’s good news for riders, particularly for those who use the ‘L.’
The $1.44 billion budget, released Monday, holds the line on base fares, projects a modest .7 percent increase in ridership, and adds service on five rapid transit lines — taking advantage of the hundreds of new ‘L’ cars that have been added to the fleet.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Breezy On Tuesday
Some of that service is already being added.
The first piece was additional rush-hour service that began Sept. 29 — two morning and two evening trips on the Red Line, one evening rush-period trip on the Purple Line, and one additional morning rush-period trip on the Brown Line.
Effective Sunday, Brown Line service offered between Kimball and points downtown on Sundays will begin at 5 a.m. and run till 1:35 a.m. Monday; effective Nov. 3, there will be five additional evening rush-period trips.READ MORE: Proposed Laws Would Improve Privacy Protections For Sex Crime Victims In Illinois
Effective Nov. 8, there will be 12 additional Orange Line trips each Saturday.
The budget plan calls for two additional rush period trips to be added during 2015 on the Blue and Orange Lines. Read the full budget plan here.
Previously-announced capital projects will go forward as anticipated, including a new 95th Street Red Line terminal, total reconstruction of the Wilson Red Line stop, and construction of new stations at Cermak on the Green Line and at Washington/Wabash on the Loop “L,” the latter replacing aging stations above Wabash at Randolph and Madison. Track work and station renovation continues on the Blue Line’s O’Hare branch and track work will continue on the Brown Line between Chicago Avenue and Armitage.MORE NEWS: Suburban Man Says Unlike Others, He's Had Plenty Of Contact With IDES -- But It's Been Of No Help
CTA’s long-range three-year operating plan does not make mention of any fare or service adjustments, but warns that most of CTA’s current labor contracts expire at the end of 2015. It estimates its 10-year capital needs at $21.4 billion, but said it expects to get only $489.9 million a year between 2015 and 2019 for capital projects.