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Old Posted Jun 7, 2019, 6:24 PM
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ardecila ardecila is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: the city o'wind
Posts: 13,884
Also attended the meeting. It was painful how non-committal everyone was trying to be.

I spoke to one of the planners from Perkins+Will, and he was unaware that Amtrak had plans to re-route all trains away from their site, nor that the Grand Crossing project which would build that new route was just funded in the very same bill that also promised funding for One Central.

I don't fault Dunn for going to the state first; as brian_b mentioned, building the platform with private funding just isn't viable given the expected rents from South Loop development. Given the rancor around Lincoln Yards, it's just too much of a risk these days to spend millions performing design work and due diligence if there is no guaranteed funding for the public infrastructure. Sterling Bay at least had Rahm in their corner, but Dunn cannot count on the unwavering support of Mayor Lightfoot to ram anything through.

The only thing I did take away is that the project team is open to ideas concerning the infrastructural piece of the development, so long as they can hit their target FAR. The problem is, this site really could be a great transit hub but that would require changes to our transit network on a regional level and its governance. The arrival of a private partner and up to $5B in funding doesn't change the fact that Metra hates the idea of running Metra Electric like rapid transit, CN owns the only line connecting Metra Electric to the rest of the rail network and doesn't want to share, and CTA is too narrowly focused on state-of-good-repair projects or social-justice based projects like Red Line extension. That's sad, because $5B is more than enough to establish a CrossRail service that would link One Central directly to O'Hare, Union Station and Hyde Park.
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Last edited by ardecila; Jun 7, 2019 at 6:34 PM.
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