METRA'S PRIMARY RAIL ALTERNATIVE...
The 33-mile SouthEast Service (SES) is proposed to run along existing freight and passenger railroad tracks, enhancing Metra's commuter rail service between the south suburbs and downtown Chicago. The SES line would link close to 20 communities in south Suburban Cook and Will counties, providing new opportunities for travel to downtown Chicago and economic growth and development for the south suburbs.
This new line would provide commuting opportunities for a fast growing, underserved corridor of the south suburbs. As the regional labor pool grows, we have to think and act strategically to provide transportation where it is needed and prevent any further congestion along our roadways as people travel into the city for work. We must also recognize and address the need to attract new employment opportunities in the south suburbs as population growth in this area is consistently outpacing job growth.
Connecting the south suburbs to the city of Chicago offers residents improved access to downtown jobs, schools, shopping, entertainment and other regional attractions. Business and real estate opportunities in the south suburbs also could expand, as developers look to take advantage of transit-oriented development and greater access to the region's labor pool. Development within the south suburbs could also lead to an enhanced tax base as property values increase and retail sales grow.
New service in this corridor would provide opportunities for area communities to promote economic growth and development by using commuter rail as a catalyst. Many communities along the proposed SES line are already planning redevelopments, and in Glenwood, Nugent Square, a four-story, mixed-use development was recently completed adjacent to the proposed SES line station in that community.
New service in this region would:
- Potentially serve more than 50 major businesses, including St. James Hospital & Health Centers, Ford Motor Co. Chicago Stamping Plant, ConAgra Foods, Inc., Roadway Express, Inc., Nicor Gas, and AT&T
- Better enable workers and commuters to travel into Chicago's Central Business District
- Spur economic growth by attracting new jobs and businesses that wish to take advantage of transit-oriented development
- Give thousands of employees in traffic congested communities an alternative to driving