What we know about the Amtrak problem at Union Station and what it means for Metra cyclists


Metra advised people leaving Union Station to consider alternative routes, as an Amtrak signal issue that disrupted morning commutes was still not resolved at the evening rush hour.

Union Station on Thursday night was crowded with commuters waiting for trains. Eighty-six Metra trains are currently affected, with delays of up to three hours. Amtrak trains are also delayed.

What happened?

Signaling issues related to the automated system governing trains leaving the Union Station forced officials to use manual controls. Workers are trying to restore the signaling system.

The message on Metra's website was clear: "Customers on all CUS lines should expect significant delays and congestion, and should consider alternative transportation, if possible."

Who is affected?

If you take a train out of Union Station, it concerns you. Metra's BNSF, Milwaukee District West and the District of North Milwaukee, the Heritage Corridor, North Central and Southwest all report significant delays. Amtrak was also touched. In all, more than 60,000 people could look for another way to get home Thursday night.

What is the alternative?

Metra said: "BNSF will operate the" charge-go "service, trains not departing on a fixed schedule, but as soon as they are full, making all stops between Union Station and Downers Grove Main Street or all stops between Downers Grove Main Street and Aurora. Customers should consider using another means of transportation, such as the UP West line. Incoming service will be extremely limited. "

Some riders who usually use the west line of Milwaukee District may be able to use the Union Pacific West line to the western suburbs, which starts at Ogilvie Station. The Rock Island Line may be an alternative for some passengers in the Heritage Corridor, as well as for some SouthWest passengers.

Pace express buses using Stevenson and Jane Addams expressways, as well as blue, green and orange CTAs, may also be an option for some travelers. However, Pace does not add additional buses.

The CTA has announced that it will honor the Metra passes.

What about Uber and Lyft?

If the way back is a carpool ride, be prepared to pay. The return trip from downtown Chicago to Glenview cost about $ 100 around 5 pm, compared to about $ 40 around 3 pm. A trip to Lyft in Naperville costs close to $ 100 at 3:45 pm, compared with about $ 70 at 3:00 pm. There are also traditional taxis.

When will the service be restored?

At 5 pm, Metra said that it was not clear. But even after the system is restored, delays are likely, Metra said.

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