Patching the cracks and bumps on the platform at the Naperville Metra station has helped maintain it over the years, but it’s been 20 years since the platform was installed and a new one must take its place.
On Monday, Metra will begin renovations on the platform, which are expected to be completed in the middle of 2012, according to a Metra spokesman.
Over the years maintenance and repair work have been done on the platform. However, as the second busiest station in the Metra system (4,000 daily commuters) a replacement is required, said Tom Miller, a Metra spokesman.
“It’s beyond its useful life,” he said.
The $2.5 million project will be completed in four phases beginning Monday and continuing into 2012, he said. The replacement platform will be made of precast concrete.
The platform is 1,000 feet long on either side and work will be done on 500 feet at a time, Miller said. Work will begin Monday on the north platform. There will be signs alerting riders where to exit and enter.
Miller said that about 20 to 25 parking spots will be affected during the construction.
In order to help offset the parking reduction, additional permit (Burlington permit) parking spaces will be provided in the Water Tower West parking lot (the former Department of Public Works facility), located on the southeast corner of Loomis Street and 5th Avenue, said Rory Fancler, city of Naperville community planner.
“There will be no net loss in parking; about 20 spaces will be moved,” Miller said.
The platform on the bridge over Washington Street also will be under construction.
The stairs that lead up to the platform from Washington Street will be affected during a portion of the project. Passengers, however, will be able to access the stairs on the south side of the bridge, Miller said.
The underground tunnel from the north parking lots will not be affected, he said.
Phase 1 of the project will not impact the Pace bus pick-up and drop-off locations, Fancler said. Some adjustment to these areas may be necessary in later phases of the project.
Although the city of Naperville is not directly involved in the project it is encouraging residents and commuters to register on its website to receive updates on the Metra Platform Improvement Project.
Fancler said that there will be several access changes during Phase 1 of the project which will include:
- Pedestrian Access: Phase 1 of the construction project will include closure of the northern half of the railroad bridge over Washington Street including the closure of the western stairway on the outbound (north) side of the platform. Temporary closures of the stairway located on the east side of the bridge will occur as construction activities in the area require; however, this stairway will remain open for the majority of Phase 1 of the project.
- Washington Street Sidewalk: Work on the bridge over Washington Street will result in intermittent closures of the Washington Street sidewalks. The sidewalk on at least one side of Washington Street will remain open at all times during construction.
- ADA Accessibility: ADA accessibility will be maintained throughout this project. Information on modifications to ADA accessibility as a result of the construction project, including changes to the location of ADA parking spaces, will be posted to the city’s website as it becomes available from Metra.
- Bicycle Parking: During Phase 1 of the construction, the bicycle rack on the northwest side of the platform will not be available. Additionally, there will not be access from the bicycle racks located on Washington Street to the outbound platform due to the closure of the northwest stairwell during Phase 1. Bicyclists who regularly park in these areas are encouraged to find an alternate bicycle parking location.
- Washington Street Lane Closures: Intermittent day time lane closures will be required as part of the work on the railroad bridge over Washington Street.