There has been an increase in complaints from residents regarding rail operations by CSX Railroad, especially involving trains blocking the 108th St. and Central Ave intersection. The Village leadership has met with CSX Railroad to determine solutions for residents. There is a current proposal between the State of Illinois, Chicago, Metra, Amtrak, Association of American Railroads, and U.S. Department of Transportation called the Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency Program (CREATE) that seeks to improve the infrastructure of rail operations. Specifically CREATE would provide an underpass at the 108th and Central Ave location similar to the one recently completed for the same track where it crosses 111th Street. Since these grade separations are very expensive and other communities are fighting for similar projects, the completion of this project is not expected to be completed any time soon.
Trustee Bud Stalker has heard the concerns of residents which include multiple slow or stopped trains through the crossing, excessive train horn noise, or trash and overgrown weeds in the track area. He has said, “I encourage residents to make their complaints known by calling 1-877-TELL-CSX. By taking complaints directly to CSX, they can get the message to the proper department to take the necessary actions and produce the solutions that will reduce the impact of rail operations on the residents of Oak Lawn. Reporting issues directly to CSX every time they occur may progress the timeline for a solution such as the CREATE grade separation program.”
You can learn more about the CREATE Program here: www.createprogram.org