CTA moves historic Lake View building for track improvement

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A historic building in the Lake View neighborhood stands in the way of faster train service, but not for long.

The Chicago Transit Authority is moving the 127-year-old Vautravers building on Newport Avenue west 30 feet and south 4 feet, according to Lauren LaSalle of Walsh Construction.

It’s all part of the Red and Purple Modernization Project (RPM).

CTA says the plan is to rebuild and completely straighten out the century-old track structures of the Red and Purple Lines north of Belmont Station.

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By moving the historic building, the CTA can remove a curve in the tracks to make the journey faster and smoother.

Stephanie Cavazos of RPM Communications said this is no ordinary project.

“So this is the first time that CTA is going to move a physical building so that we can build new track structures,” Cavazos said. “The building is a historic monument. And at CTA, one of our priorities is to preserve as much of Chicago’s history as possible by modernizing the tracks as well as our trains.”

On Monday, site workers were preparing for a test in which they planned to move the building just a few meters.

LaSalle said the move would be completed on Tuesday.

“When I joined… the RPM project, I said ‘the only thing I want to do is move this building,’” LaSalle said. “The front facade is very important, it is the historic nature of the building.”

CTA said rail service would not be affected by the move.

RPM plans to broadcast some of this movement on Facebook Liva.

It will be finished tomorrow. If you want to take a look, go to CTA / RPM Facebook page.

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