Kiewit wins $220 million job to rebuild south Red Line track

Kiewit Infrastructure Corp., leveraging its experience and expertise in rebuilding tracks and stations on the north end of the Red Line, has landed the job to rebuild the south end of the workhorse rail line next year.

Kiewit submitted the lowest bid for the track work component of project at $220.1 million, according to the CTA. Work will start next spring to replace all track, ties, ballast and drainage systems from Cermak/Chinatown to 95th Street. The bid for the total $425 million project was under project estimates. The project will close the south end of the Red Line for five months.

The CTA reports that Kiewit also slightly exceeded its target of 28 percent Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) participation—reaching 29.3 percent. Kiewit will hire 23 DBE subcontractors, with more than 50 percent based in Chicago.

The total DBE contact dollar amount is $66.5 million, with 60.6 percent going to African-American firms, 23.8 percent to Hispanic firms, 3.5 percent to Asian firms, and 12.1 percent to women-owned firms.

So far, Kiewit has finished north Red Line station and weekend track work on time, doing a nice along the way. We expect the same next year on the South Side.


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  • Exactly, what are they leveraging except clout?

    And as far as "expect[ing] the same," let's hope that the next mayor isn't announcing by 2020 that they have to rip out the line again, or, in fact, that slow zones don't reappear for at least that long. Anyone want to hold the kitty on that betting pool?

  • In reply to jack:

    1. We're going to have to watch whether they put in a drainage system to prevent water from pooling in the roadbed.

    2. If they continue with limestone ballast & don't put in a drainage system, then it's guaranteed to fail again.

    3. They also need to use plastic or concrete ties, instead of creosoted wood.
    It's bizarrely fascinating that CTA won't use concrete tie, while that's about all that's used in Europe & all the mainline railroads use them in this country.

    Otherwise, the fix is in & it's just priming the pump for yet another total rebuild!

  • In reply to ScooterLibbby:

    Probably so.

    On the concrete tie issue, they started with them in 1969 on both the Dan Ryan and Kennedy lines, but pulled them out soon after, supposedly because they cracked. On the other hand, the subways recently got poured concrete ties (or whatever one calls what goes perpendicularly slightly wider than the track).

  • In reply to jack:

    They put concrete ties in track 2 from Bryn Mawr to Berwyn before that as a test for a couple of years.
    For some reason, they were always using that track section for tie & rail testing.

  • I have just created a new Yahoo Group "Red Line Shutdown" to acquire and distribute Information, Ideas, and Comments about the Shutdown:

    Please consider joining the Group, and giving us access to your GREAT STOREHOUSE of knowledge - as you guys know A LOT about Chicago's Transit situation and Infrastructure.

    The Group is still in the process of being set-up, so it may be a while before it is working correctly; any suggestions on how to make it work better? (And N O - I am N O T going to Delete it).

    Thanks - and Welcome,

    Mike Payne

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