Rail station planning begins on Peoria to Chicago line, with public meetings in Ottawa, Utica, Morris, Peru

Meetings will be conducted in open house format

Duane Calbow, economic development planner at North Central Illinois Council of Governments, talks about what consultants will be looking for in future train stations along the proposed Peoria-to-Chicago passenger rail line.

The public will have an opportunity to hear information on potential train station locations for a proposed new passenger rail service between Peoria and Chicago.

Four meetings will be conducted with the North Central Council of Governments in coordination with La Salle, Morris, Utica, Ottawa and Peru.

Events will be in an open house format, allowing the public to come and go during the event. The same materials will be available at all events for the public to attend whichever is the most convenient for them.

Exhibits will be on display, and consultant team members will be available to answer questions. All materials will be made available on the NCICG website after the events are complete.

The events are planned:

  • from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, at Ottawa City Hall, 301 W. Madison St.
  • from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday, March 7, at Morris City Hall, 700 Division St.
  • from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 12, at North Utica Village Hall, 248 W. Canal St.
  • from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 13, at Peru City Hall, 1901 Fourth St.

The study was funded through a grant received from the Illinois Department of Transportation through the State Planning and Research program.

Residents and businesses can learn more about this project by visiting the NCICG website at ncicg.org or by following NCICG on Facebook or LinkedIn. Additional information regarding the overall Peoria to Chicago passenger rail initiative can be found on the city of Peoria’s website at peoriagov.org.

The city of Peoria recently was selected for the Federal Railroad Administration’s Corridor Identification and Development Program.

The train route, although not officially approved, still is about a decade away from being in operation, officials have said. The proposed route begins in Peoria and runs through La Salle-Peru, Utica, Ottawa, Morris and Joliet before ending at Chicago’s Union Station.