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CTA To Attach Brown Line To New Belmont Bypass Beginning This Weekend — But It Will Cause Major Disruptions At Belmont

Free shuttle buses will be running between Belmont and Southport beginning at 4 a.m. Saturday, and between Belmont and Irving Park at 4 a.m. Sunday.

The Red-Purple bypass will allow Northbound Brown Line trains to completely avoid the Red and Purple line tracks by creating a bridge just north of the Belmont CTA station.
Jake Wittich/Block Club Chicago
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CHICAGO — The CTA is getting ready to attach the Brown Line to the new Belmont Bypass that flies over the Lakeview neighborhood beginning this weekend, a switchover that will force service disruptions on the Brown Line as of early Saturday.

The CTA will temporarily suspend Brown Line service between Belmont and Southport at 4 a.m. Saturday. Free shuttle buses will carry riders between those stops until 4 a.m. Monday. Customers are warned to plan for extra travel time in their weekend commutes.

The disruption will expand from Belmont to the Irving Park stop at 4 a.m. Sunday.

Full service is expected to be restored on that stretch of the Brown Line by 4 a.m. Monday. The CTA expects the bypass to be in service before the end of the year.

The actual connection to the new bypass — a central part of the CTA’s $2.1 billion Red and Purple Line Modernization project — will happen above North Kenmore Avenue, just north of Belmont.

The bypass, once finished, will add train service and reduce existing train traffic congestion at the Belmont Station, where Red, Purple and Brown line trains intersect and often must wait for each other to pass.

The work to connect the bypass will continue on Monday, impacting boarding of northbound Purple and Brown line trains at Belmont. Both those trains will board and exit passengers on the Red Line side of the platform, the CTA said.

Those changes will last from 10:45 a.m. Monday through Nov. 8.

The service changes will also impact CTA tracker time estimates.

The completion of the bypass is the first major milestone to be reached in the Red and Purple Modernization Project’s first phase. The overall project, which features three major components, is meant to upgrade the aging tracks, stations and other infrastructure along nearly 10 miles of north side tracks.

The components include reconstruction of the Lawrence, Argyle, Berwyn and Bryn Mawr Red Line stations into larger, fully accessible stations

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