News & Reviews News Wire Double-track construction set to end South Shore street running

Double-track construction set to end South Shore street running

By Trains Staff | February 22, 2022

| Last updated on March 26, 2024

Commuter trains to be replaced by buses beginning Feb. 28

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Electric multiple-unit commuter train running down street at night
An eastbound South Shore Line commuter train passes the intersection of 11th and Franklin streets in Michigan City, Ind., on Monday, Feb. 21, 2022. Bus service will replace trains between Michigan City and Dune Park in Porter, Ind., on Monday, Feb. 28. Bruce Stahl

MICHIGAN CITY, Ind. — The end is apparently at hand for the majority of  street running for South Shore Line commuter trains in Michigan City.

Beginning Monday, Feb. 28, buses will replace commuter trains between the Carroll Avenue station in Michigan City and Dune Park in Porter, Ind., as part of the project to double-track the South Shore main line between Gary and Michigan City.

An advisory posted on Twitter by the Northwest Indiana Commuter Transportation District says the busing will continue through fall 2022, and details bus schedules to replace rail operations. By the time rail operations exist, the majority of street running as it exists today will no longer be in place; a small segment not included in this portion of the project construction will apparently remain, at least for now.

Orange diesel running light down street at night
Chicago South Shore & South Bend GP38-2 No. 2004 runs light down the street in Michigan City, Ind. on Monday, Feb. 21, 2022. Freight operations in Michigan City are set to continue at night during the double-track project. Bruce Stahl

The busing will involve all weekday and weekend passenger trains. Operations by the Chicago South Shore & South Bend, the contract freight operator on the route, will reportedly continue at night. That is also when passenger equipment will be ferried between Dune Park and the South Shore shops, adjacent to the Carroll station.

The Double Track project will involve construction of a second main for about 25 miles between Gary and Michigan city, and is expected to reduce travel times between Michigan City and Chicago from 1 hour, 40 minutes, to 1 hour, 7 minutes. The NICTD approved a $304.8 million construction contract for the second main in November, after a delay in which the initial bids came in well above the agency’s estimates [see “Construction contract for South Shore double track project approved,Trains News Wire, Nov. 24, 2021]. The full cost of the project has been estimated at $491 million, with completion expected in 2024.

More on the Double Track project is available at this web page.

2 thoughts on “Double-track construction set to end South Shore street running

  1. This means The End of the Interurban Era. The South Shore Line will now be just another commuter railroad. That street-running made it still an interurban–the Last One! OK we can argue about Biblical Exigesis from the Bible by Hilton & Due! I rode it in 1982 with the classic equipment while spending a weekend photographing it with a friend who had moved to Chicago. We got chased out of Michigan City by a CSS&SB train to Chicago! He also took me into Madison Street Station while it was still there. A wire break on a 2005 Memorial Day weekend Sunday prevented me from doing it while I was doing the entire Chicago commuter rail network (long story)—so this must be the Proverbial IT. At least I have it–with the right equipment too–but not into downtown South Bend! Can’t have everything–but we’d like to!

  2. I rode it last Friday knowing it would be coming to an end. Of course, on the ride back into Chicago, METRA had a power outage and when the power came back, the switches weren’t working. This led to a 90 minute stop at the junction where it merges back onto METRA track.

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