CTA 2024 budget focuses on system modernization and upgrade projects

CTA 2024 budget focuses on system modernization and upgrade projects Image credit: CTA

The Chicago Transit Board (CTA) has approved the $1.99 billion operating budget for nation’s second largest transit agency. In 2024, the CTA will keep all fares at current levels, maintain the delivery of existing bus and rail services, and add service in the year ahead to meet growing ridership demand—all while continuing to make important investments to upgrade and modernize the system.

The proposed spending budget reflects a 9.2 percent increase (or $168.2 million) over the previous year’s budget and supports CTA’s ongoing workforce initiatives for hiring and retaining key operations personnel, while also introducing several new measures that will help improve the overall customer experience with enhanced security and improved Ventra fare system features. 

The CTA’s 2024-2028 Capital Improvement Program—which is separate from the agency’s operating budget—calls for $3.61 billion in projects over the next five years. This budget reflects CTA’s ongoing commitment towards the modernization and improvement of its physical infrastructure—tracks, rail stations, buses and trains, facilities and technologies. Among the many important investments is the Red Line Extension, which will extend the CTA’s busiest rail line to the southern City limits and will provide greatly improved transit access and connectivity to the Far South Side of Chicago.

Other capital projects to continue or begin in 2024 include:

  • All Stations Accessibility Program (ASAP): A total of 14 rail stations are fully funded for future accessibility modernization construction work. Of these stations, five are under construction, three are in design and five are in planning. In addition to station improvements, CTA has $37M in funding for elevator replacements and/or modernizations of existing elevators across the system-up to 16 elevators.
  • Bus System Electrification: Funds allocated for the full electrification of the 103rd Garage, plus an allocation of funding for the ongoing Chicago Garage implementation.
  • Rail Fleet Modernization: Increased production of the 7000-series–CTA’s newest generation of railcars. Plus, ongoing quarter-life overhauls of the agency’s 5000-series
  • Refresh & Renew: Expansion of annual facilities improvement program to include more CTA employee workplaces, while continuing to focus on rail station repairs and enhancements.

Source: CTA