Each day, many residents of Illinois depend on safe, reliable trains and buses to get where they need to go. In the RTA region alone, in Northeastern Illinois, CTA, Metra and Pace provide more than two million rides each weekday, saving riders time and money, reducing automobile traffic, and fueling our regional and state economy.
The RTA transit system has $30 billion of unmet high-priority projects, and Illinois’ Downstate transit agencies have more than $1.5 billion in reinvestment needs. The RTA’s Regional Transit Strategic Plan, Invest in Transit, sets clear priorities for public transportation across Chicago and northeastern Illinois, calling for $2 to $3 billion a year of investments over the next decade. Inadequate funding has resulted in aging transit infrastructure meaning service is slower, more crowded, and prone to breakdowns, all of which affect riders and the economy alike.
After nearly a decade without a State of Illinois capital program, transit in the RTA region will get a much-needed infusion from the Rebuild Illinois bill passed on June 1, 2019 by the General Assembly. The bill provides $2.7 billion in bonding authority for transit infrastructure and annual, sustainable state revenue for capital investments in public transportation. The RTA had long advocated for the funding to address capital needs of $30 billion for the transit system projected over the next ten years.