F.H. Paschen from Chicago and Indianapolis-based Infrastructure and Energy Alternatives, Inc. subsidiary Ragnar Benson say they are working together on the $500 million Lake Corridor rail expansion awarded by the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District (NICTD).
The two contractors will design-build the transportation link connecting northwest Indiana to Chicago and Cook County.
“The project includes the construction of an eight-mile single-track branch extension of the existing South Shore rail line and four additional rail stations to reach high-growth areas in Lake County, Indiana,” IEA says in a statement. “In addition, the joint venture team will construct a maintenance and storage facility with a layover yard and three traction power substations to power the overhead contact system.”
The project, which started in October, is expected to be completed by 2024. The rail extension was designed with a focus on sustainability and wetland mitigation. The construction will incorporate best practices to protect the environment while at the same time expand NICTD’s service coverage, improve mobility and accessibility to the region and stimulate local job creation and economic development opportunities for Lake County.
“After an extensive design/build procurement, the F.H. Paschen Ragnar Benson Joint Venture was determined to be the best value proposer for the project. Through spending extensive time with their team, we have a high degree of confidence that they will be a true partner to complete this project on-time and within budget,” said NICTD president Mike Noland.
Chris Beck, NICTD’s project manager for the West Lake Corridor project, said “NICTD is excited to be working with the F.H. Paschen Ragnar Benson Joint Venture team to build this monumental project, which is so important to residents of Indiana. Designing and building a commuter railroad involves many complicated civil and electrical aspects, and we are confident that together the team will be very successful.
“We are excited to move forward on the West Lake Corridor project,” said F.H. Paschen president Jim Blair. “We look forward to partnering with NICTD, Ragnar Benson and local businesses throughout the project and for many years to come.”