Discussion related to commuter rail and rapid transit operations in the Chicago area including the South Shore Line, Metra Rail, and Chicago Transit Authority.

Moderators: JamesT4, metraRI

  by daybeers
I like to keep track of my rail transit mileage, but I can only find lengths for entire lines on Wikipedia. Does anyone know of somewhere I can find mileposts for each station?
  by Allouette
While not a perfect system, you can use Chicago's street grid to calculate mileage. Numbers start at State and Madison and go up by 800 per mile. Diagonal lines just require a little math. Station listings at Chicago-L.org give street addresses.
  by justalurker66
One could also use the distance measurement features of Google Earth Pro. I have not seen a list of stations by mile markers.
  by spRocket
One thing to watch out for regarding the Chicago street grid and mileage: the first three miles south of Madison Street. The first mile (Roosevelt Rd.) is 1200 South, the second mile (Cermak Rd.) is 2200 south, and the third mile is 31st St., where the 800-to-the-mile rule extends southwards.
Everyone: The City of Chicago has a good layout that uses eight long blocks (or sixteen short blocks)
per mile. Each mile there is a primary throughfare; each half mile there is a secondary throughfare.

400 between normally denotes 1/2 mile; 800 between normally denotes 1 mile distance in numbers.

Many CTA stations are spaced using this rule for distance between stations - 1/2 or one mile apart.

The noteable exceptions to the number rule was brought up by spRocket south of Madison Street - which
is 0N/0S running east/west. State Street is 0W/0E running north/south. The corner of State and Madison
Streets in Downtown Chicago is literally considered the center of the City.

These are the major throughfares running north and south through Chicago - first west of State Street:
800 West: Halsted Street (signed in part as Illinois State Route 1)
1200 West: Racine Avenue (s)
1600 West: Ashland Avenue
2000 West: Damen Avenue (s)
2400 West: Western Avenue (The longest continuous street within the City of Chicago 11900 S to 7600 N.)
2800 West: California Avenue (s)
3200 West: Kedzie Avenue
4000 West: Pulaski Road
4800 West: Cicero Avenue (IL-50)
5200 West: Laramie Avenue (s)
5600 West: Central Avenue
6000 West: Austin Boulevard (primary throughfare on North Side only)
6400 West: Narragansett/Ridgeland Avenue (s)
6800 West: Oak Park Avenue (s)
7200 West: Harlem Avenue (IL-43)
(s) denotes secondary throughfares

East of State Street south of Downtown:
400 East: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive (2300 S to 11500 S)
800 East: Cottage Grove Avenue (S of 40th Street)
1600 East: Stony Island Avenue (S of 56th Street at the Museum of Science and Industry)
2000 East: Jeffery Boulevard (S of 67th Street at southern end of Jackson Park)
2400 East: South Shore Boulevard (1/2 mile 6700 to 7100 S.); Yates Boulevard (7100 to 10300 S.)
The City goes to 4100 East - south of 10300 at the Illinois/Indiana (Hammond) State Line (to 13800 S.)

South of Madison Street East and West:
1200 South: Roosevelt Road
2200 South: Cermak Road and than:
31st; 35th*; 39th (Pershing Road); 43rd; 47th*; 51st; 55th*(Garfield Road); 59th; 63rd*; 67th*; 71st; 79th*; 83rd;
87th*; 95th* (US-12/20); 103rd*; 107th; 111th*; 115th*; 119th; 123rd; 127th*; 130th; 138th Streets.
(*Primary Throughfares)

North of Madison Street East and West:
800 N: Chicago Avenue
1200 N: Division Street
1600 N: North Avenue (IL-64)
2000 N: Armitage Avenue (s)
2400 N: Fullerton Avenue
2800 N: Diversey Avenue
3200 N: Belmont Avenue
3600 N: Addison Street
4000 N: Irving Park Boulevard (IL-19)
4400 N: Montrose Avenue
4800 N: Lawrence Avenue
5200 N: Foster Avenue (US-41)
5600 N: Bryn Mawr Avenue (s)
6000 N: Peterson Avenue - Known as Elmdale (s) near the CTA Howard (Red) Line Thorndale Station
6400 N: Devon Avenue
6800 N: Pratt Boulevard (s)
7200 N: Touhy Avenue
7600 N: Howard Street (Chicago-Evanston City Line)
(s) notes secondary throughfare; all others listed on the North Side E/W are primary.

This should help identify City of Chicago mileages and accompany any Chicago Street Map...MACTRAXX
Everyone: Chicago has roads on the City's layout/street grid that run both northwest and southwest from
Downtown. There are two that contain or parallel CTA Rapid Transit routes:

Milwaukee Avenue northwest between Downtown Chicago and Logan Square is the route of the O'Hare
(Blue) Line first as a subway than L structure to the Logan Square (Kedzie/Logan) Subway Station.
This route turns north at Milwaukee/Kimball to the Belmont/Kimball Subway Station and then the
Kennedy Expressway for the rest of the line to O'Hare Airport.

Archer Avenue southwest from Downtown Chicago (to 6400 West/5500 South-55th/Narragansett)
is the route of the CTA #62 and #62X* routes - which were once two of the busiest CTA Bus routes.
The Midway (Orange) Line was constructed to offer rapid transit options to the Southwest Side
and Midway Airport along with neighborhoods directly served by the CTA #62 and #62X* buses.
(*CTA Bus Route #62X was discontinued July 3, 1994)

Milwaukee and Archer Avenues are two of the CTA's most important routings...MACTRAXX
  by justalurker66
MACTRAXX wrote: Sat Jun 26, 2021 7:31 amMilwaukee Avenue northwest between Downtown Chicago and Logan Square is the route of the O'Hare (Blue) Line first as a subway than L structure to the Logan Square (Kedzie/Logan) Subway Station.
The elevated part of that route is one of the oldest lines in Chicago, originally built as a branch of the Metropolitan West Side Elevated in the 1890s. The construction of the Milwaukee-Dearborn subway removed the connection that ran generally west of Paulina St. Logan Square was an above ground station south of the square until the subway was extended northwest (1970 Kennedy, 1984 O'Hare).

The Midway (Orange) Line is the newest (1993). It was proposed as a subway on the initial plans. The connection at the south end of the State St subway intended for an Archer St subway is now in use as part of the Dan Ryan (Red) line. Moving the Red Line connection over to the subway freed up capacity for the Orange Line on the elevated tracks.

The 2006 Pink Line restored the Paulina connector to revenue use and eliminated the longest piece of non-revenue track in the system.

Nearly 30 years later and we are waiting for the next expansion of CTA Rail - Red Line south to 130th St. 100 years of expanding the system followed by 30 years of waiting.