(CBS) — Delays on Metra and Amtrak lines are growing, not to mention the freight hauled to and through the Chicago area by rail. A blue ribbon panel commissioned by Amtrak believes it has the answers — but they won’t come cheap.
The delays riders see and experience are just the tip of the iceberg, said former Macomb (Ill.) Mayor Tom Carper, a member of the Amtrak board and a member of the panel. He compared it to a $650-800 billion tax on Americans because of the delays encountered today — costs which shippers and manufacturers are all too happy to pass along to consumers.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Stray Sprinkles On Friday
The president of Chicago’s Environmental Law and Policy Center, Howard Learner, said the problems can best be described this way: If each airline at O’Hare had its own traffic controllers, the result would be chaos.
“Would anybody think that’s a good idea?” he asked, answering, “I don’t think so.”