What Is the History of the Ogilvie Transportation Center in Chicago?


Quick Answer

The Ogilvie Transportation Center was built in 1911 and was originally known as the Chicago and North Western Terminal. The rail station was renovated in 1984 and again in 1991. The station received the name Ogilvie Transportation Center in 1997.

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Full Answer

At the time of its 1911 completion and opening, this rail station was operated by the Chicago and North Western Railway. The station was designed by the architectural team of Frost and Granger. In its upper level, the station's head house featured dressing rooms, bathing facilities, nurses' rooms and a doctor's office. The head house also featured a 40,000-square-foot waiting room.

In 1984, the station's original head house was razed to the ground and rebuilt as the Citicorp Center, a 42-story building made of steel and glass. In 1991, the facility underwent a major rehabilitation when it came under the oversight of Metra, one of Chicago's three public transportation authorities. The station needed extensive work to meet modern standards of safety and structural integrity.

The rehabilitation saw the removal of lead paint and the total replacement of all 16 rail tracks meeting at the station. Taking four years to complete, the project cost $138 million and required 800,000 hours of labor. In 1997, the station was renamed after Richard B. Ogilvie, a former Illinois governor and major rail travel proponent.

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