Chicago’s Loop is a transportation hub for the city, welcoming hundreds of thousands of commuters every day for work or travel. The “Loop Link” Bus Rapid Transit project facilitates more efficient bus and bicycle traffic in order to better connect major transit facilities spanning the downtown area. Benesch was selected by the Chicago Department of Transportation as the Consultant Construction Engineer on this $32 million endeavor, which called for the construction of eight new Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) bus platforms, pavement placement on two main Loop thoroughfares, and the installation of protected bicycle lanes and dedicated bus lanes; roadway use permitting coordination; and resurfacing of all impacted streets.
Key to the successful completion of this project was maintaining access for a diverse range of stakeholders, from buses and taxis to cars, bicycles, pedestrians, businesses, special event planners and construction teams at adjacent infrastructure project sites. Benesch employed an extensive outreach program for the life of the project, including creating and distributing a weekly project email blast consisting of up-to-date project information and any impacts throughout the project area due to construction activities.
Now complete, the Bus Rapid Transit line successfully connects the Loop from east to west, providing another crucial transit option for commuters making their way from Michigan Avenue to Union Station. The dedicated bus lanes have also greatly improved CTA bus routes in the Loop, allowing them to travel faster and better maintain their service schedules on what is otherwise a highly congested urban thoroughfare.