Indiana’s South Shore Line receives FTA approval on second rail project

Written by Bill Wilson, Editor-in-Chief
South Shore Line
A double-track project in northwest Indiana will cut travel time between Chicago and Michigan City to just over an hour.
Indiana South Shore Line

Indiana’s South Shore Line is going to have a new addition. The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) now has the line’s double track project in final engineering phase, which essentially means it has the green light to proceed.

The project, which will cost $416 million, would set up a second line of tracks between Gary, Ind., and Michigan City, Ind., and also would include the elimination of 21 at-grade crossings in Michigan City.

The double track project is expected to receive full federal funding approval by Spring 2021, and the completion date could be as early as 2023.

“The double track project is critical to reducing commuting time to Chicago and activating the potential for transformational development of the region,” Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority President and CEO Bill Hanna said in a statement.

With the nod from the FTA properties can now be acquired along the double track project right-of-way.

This is the second South Shore project that has received FTA approval over the last six months. In October, South Shore got the go-ahead on an $816 million West Lake Corridor project. The West Lake project will consist of the construction of 8 miles of track between Hammond, Ind., and Dyer, Ind.

State and local funding will account for 62 percent of the total cost on both projects.

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