The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) has wrapped up the final step in the Wilson Station Reconstruction Project, which revamped a building that was nearly a century old and transformed it into a modern rail station.
The project’s final milestone, which began in 2014, completed the restoration work for the historic Gerber building, which was built in 1923.
The building, designed by architect Arthur Gerber, served as the station’s main entrance for decades. The CTA said it has completely restored the station’s exterior and recreated its historic clock and barrier wall, which it said had been removed many years ago.
CTA said the renovated Gerber Building will serve as a viable commercial space for the local community, and the transit authority is seeking a tenant for the space.
“The new Wilson station will provide an improved commuting experience for the more than 1.7 million people who use the station each year, and is an example of what our upcoming Red and Purple Modernization Program will do for other stations along the Red Line,” said CTA President Dorval R. Carter, Jr. “We thank the Uptown community for their support of this project and for their patience during construction, and we look forward to serving local residents and visitors in and to this vibrant neighborhood.”
The $203-million Wilson station project is the latest in a series of initiatives for the “Red Ahead” program, which is intended to enhance service along the CTA’s Red Line, its busiest rail line.
The Wilson Station is now fully accessible to customers with disabilities and features a modern design, providing a more convenient commute for customers.
The new station’s features include:
- Replaced outdated station with a spacious, light-filled and attractive station with Red-Purple Line transfer point; three entrances; escalators and elevators; security cameras; and real-time Train and Bus Tracker
- Large platforms and architectural glass platform canopies that provide greater weather protection
- New artwork in the main stationhouse from artist, designer and engineer Cecil Balmond
- New, quieter track structure that replaces century-old structure that was more than 100 years old and removes unsightly structural columns from Broadway Avenue to improve traffic sightlines and street-level pedestrian environment
One of the largest projects in CTA history, the new Wilson station project created more than 550 construction jobs, the transit authority said.