Plans made to extend Indiana commuter rail to Chicago

July 5, 2011

The Associated Press

(AP photo)
Indiana rail extension plan in progress.

The operators of northern Indiana's commuter railroad are eying a plan to extend the main line from Hammond to the city of Dyer.

Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District spokesman John Parsons says the proposed eight-mile-long extension has strong support from the mayors and town managers along the northern U.S. 41 corridor.

The Times of Munster reports that seven trains per day would carry 4,510 passengers per week into Chicago along the proposed Dyer-to-Hammond route.

Officials say previous plans to extend the South Shore to Lowell and Valparaiso would have to wait for completion of the Dyer branch.

Once fares are deducted from the new line's operating costs, the district would need about $26.1 million a year to pay foroperations and debt service on construction bonds.