Untangling Chicago’s rail traffic mess

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The New York Times, on Monday, provided a thought-provoking progress report on the ongoing C.R.E.A.T.E. project to ease rail congestion in and around Chicago.

Did you know that 1/4 of all U.S. rail traffic — and fully 1/2 of all intermodal rail traffic — moves through the Chicago area?

That kind of volume, as has been well documented, has created a traffic bottleneck of sizeable proportions here.  As the story reports, a load of rail cargo can make its way from the Port of Los Angeles to Chicago in less than 48 hours, but then typically takes more than 30 hours just to get through the city.

The $3.2 billion C.R.E.A.T.E. project, which is funded by local, state and federal sources (and by the railroads themselves), includes some 70 congestion-reduction projects, 14 of which have been completed and another dozen of which are now underway.

Getting the rest of the work done now depends on the ability of Congress to pass a bipartisan transportation infrastructure bill which, as you might imagine, is leaving local transportation, supply chain, logistics and industrial real estate industry leaders uneasy.

To read the full New York Times story, click here.

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