The Chicago Transit Authority has announced it will spend $18 million renovating the historic Quincy L Station in the Loop. The project is just the latest in a series of CTA station additions and upgrades in recent years, including the ongoing $75 million consolidation of the Madison/Wabash and Randolph/Wabash Stations into the new Madison/Wabash Station on the opposite side of The Loop.
The Quincy Station is best known as the only L station in the system that deliberately had no advertising. The ads you see are imitations of the type of advertisements that might be seen when the station opened in 1897.
Much of the station’s current form mimics A.M. Hedley’s design of 119 years ago, including the chess pieces that adorn the structure. Those were placed there because the station’s namesake, President John Quincy Adams, was a big chess enthusiast and who collected chess sets. And in spite of an extensive renovations in the 1980’s, much of the tin you see is original.
As it often does with station renovations, the CTA has created a web page with the latest information on the project. You can find that here.
And if you want to dig deep into the history of this station, or any other, a visit to Chicago-L.org is a must.
Press release follows.
CTA to Renovate Historic Quincy Loop Station
CTA Board awards contract to make improvements to historic Loop ‘L’ station
The CTA’s Board of Directors today approved a contract for renovations of the historic Quincy station, one of CTA’s oldest stations built in 1897. The improvements will preserve the original appearance of the Loop ‘L’ station while upgrading the station with the addition of two elevators to make the station accessible to customers with disabilities.
The $18.2 million renovation will also include stair replacement, painting, lighting improvements and more.
“The Quincy ‘L’ station has served riders for more than 100 years, providing Chicagoans with convenient access to and from Chicago’s downtown Loop,” said CTA President Carter. “These improvements will retain the station’s historic appearance while making necessary upgrades including the addition of two elevators.”
Some features from the original historic station, which opened when U.S. President William McKinley was in office, remain today—including pressed metal wreaths and fluted pilasters, or columns, located on the stationhouse façade. Much of the station’s appearance has been restored over the years while retaining its historic character. This includes the ticket agent’s booth, which was faithfully replicated in the 1980s based on original 1897 plans and is still in use today.
The Quincy station was last renovated in 1988. The station provides more than 2.2 million rides annually on the Brown, Orange, Pink and Purple lines and is a major multi-modal transfer point for 10 CTA bus routes as well as providing convenient connections to Union Station and the LaSalle Street Metra Station.
The accessibility improvements are another step toward CTA’s push toward 100 percent accessibility across CTA, a goal set by the CTA Strategic Accessibility Program announced in January 2016.
The construction contract for the CTA Quincy Loop Station Upgrade Project was awarded to Ragnar Benson Construction, LLC. Construction is expected to begin later this year.