By AARON GETTINGER
The $43 million Garfield Gateway Project renovation has concluded, providing a number of improvements to the Green Line ‘L’ Station that, through the all-hours #55 bus service, provides public transit access to Hyde Park. The project has been considered a key part of South Side infrastructural improvements related to the planned Obama Presidential Center.
The station’s platform canopies have been extended, and platform accessibility has been upgraded through improved elevators and escalators. The station has also been beautified through public art, new architectural flourishes and landscaping.
“The newly remodeled Garfield Green Line station has created an iconic gateway to the Washington Park community and boosted the development that’s already occurring here,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “By adding modern amenities and convenient features to this key station, we help promote further transformation of this neighborhood.”
The project was funded in part by a U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) grant. The original Garfield station house was built in 1892 and named a Chicago landmark in 2001.
A University spokeswoman said the USDOT and Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) are funding the exterior and remediation work of the station house, which has been restored to its original look, with the U. of C. funding a portion of the interior renovation and landscaping. The U. of C. will lease the station house as a welcome center and part of its Garfield Avenue Arts Block.
According to the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), efforts to hire a diverse workforce exceeded goals, with a 63 percent minority hiring level and over a fifth of the workforce coming from the surrounding neighborhood.
It is one of the Green Line’s two park-and-ride stations, with $2 12-hour on-site parking. The station’s last renovation was completed in 2001.