Chicago riders pleased with new Green Line train cars

July 12, 2012

Jewell Washington

(Bombardier)
Bombardier is supplying 706 new rail cars (known as the 5000-Series) to the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), the second largest public transportation system in the United States. The new vehicles will replace older rail cars, some more than 30 years old.

It’s been just over a week since six new "L" cars were added to the Chicago Transit Authority’s Green Line.

The CTA said the 5000-series cars allow for smoother acceleration and braking, have aisle-facing seating and additional wheelchair space. Riders said the train cars seem lighter, brighter and safer. They also said they don’t mind the standing room, especially in rush hour traffic.

“I like the handheld rails that they have at the top and the nice digital display and announcing every stop is really nice … so it’s really convenient to me,” said Richard Smith, who said he’s been riding the green line for five years.

The new cars contain fewer seats than the CTA's previous generation, but that also means more room to maneuver during the busy rush hour.

"I don't see nothing wrong with less seating [because] it's more standing room," Ronald Brown said, "so it's not a problem."

“The el’s kind of known for being dirty, smells pretty nasty,” commuter Kaman Tie said, “I really hope they do a good job of keeping it clean."

In fact, Michael Bentel, a CTA worker whose job it is to clean the trains, said the new cars will make it easier.

“I like them a lot. I think they’re pretty rad,” he said.

The CTA said it’s receiving 706 of the new rail cars which they plan to add to other "L" train lines over time.