Damen Avenue at Lake Street transportation facility returns train access to neighborhood

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For the first time since 1948, part of the Near West Side of Chicago will have train access to it, and an easy way to travel far beyond. Plans for the Damen Green Line Station, a new glass-walled transportation center to be located at Damen Avenue and Lake Street, recently were unveiled.

With glass walls, open sightlines meant to give broad views of Chicago, and a landmark green truss mimicking both the city’s bridges and the Green Line itself, the planned transit center will serve as a connection point for train-to-bus riders, at nearly every hour of the day and night. Designed by Perkins+Will, the open-concept structure will be brightly illuminated to provide a safe atmosphere.

Having a public art installation, a grand staircase and elevated glass towers, the structure is meant to be eye-catching, but also intended as a spot from which the eye can wander. Capped by a bridge comprised of a glass-enclosed passageway supported by what might one day be considered iconic green steel trusses, the bridge will connect outbound and inbound passengers, and perhaps connect both Chicagoans and visitors to the city with the visual impact of the city itself, by way of the sweeping views if it.

“Today’s groundbreaking marks another major milestone for the CTA, which brings new jobs and opportunities for Chicago’s residents,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel says. “This new station will be a community anchor, serve those who live and work in the neighborhood, and will become a gateway to further usher in economic growth for the Near West Side.”

Perkins+Will has designed more than 120 transit stations around the world. The Damen Green Line Station is the latest of those public transit developments.

“We are excited to partner with the City of Chicago on this important project in our own backyard,” says Douglas Smith, Managing Principal at Perkins+Will. “We are a Chicago-based firm, so are proud to use our global expertise to enhance the public transit experience of Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) riders and help return access and investment to this community.”

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