Union Pacific Railroad will embark on a major tie replacement project beginning Monday, Aug. 14 along an approximately 10-mile stretch of the UP North Line between Highland Park and Wilmette.
Union Pacific, which owns and maintains the three UP lines in the Metra system, will replace approximately 3,000 ties between Highland Park and Wilmette. To lessen impacts on the current train schedule as well as the communities along the line, work will occur between 7 p.m. and 5 a.m. Sunday through Friday until mid-September. Union Pacific believes that this schedule will allow the work to progress more quickly, lessening the impact to communities along the line.
“Tie replacement is essential and must be done at regular intervals to maintain track speeds and service levels,” said Metra Executive Director/CEO Jim Derwinski. “We understand that track work during overnight hours will affect the communities in the work zone, but working when fewer trains are running will enable the UP to minimize the impact by allowing the work to be accomplished more quickly.”
Metra riders may experience minor delays during the evening as trains pass through the work zone. Communities along the tracks will experience increased noise levels, including train horns, during work periods. Federal law requires trains to sound their horns when entering a track work zone even if the work takes place in a community that is regulated as a quiet zone.
Track changes may occur as trains work around the track workers, and customers are advised to listen for platform announcements throughout the project to verify the boarding platform well in advance of a train’s arrival at their station.
The project is expected to last through mid-September. Any changes to the current train schedule will be posted at metra.com.