The first step of transforming downtown Joliet into a huge transportation hub begins next month with the construction of a new Metra parking lot and Pace bus turnaround across from the Will County Adult Detention Center.
A $1.8 million contract to build a new surface lot at the corner of Chicago and Marion streets has been awarded to P.T. Ferro Construction, City Manager Thomas Thanas said. It will replace the existing 250-car lot with one that will be able to accommodate 400 vehicles.
The whistles and bells -- landscaping and aesthetic design work that will tie the lot in with the future phases of the sprawling transportation center -- will be done as the multiyear project progresses, he said.
As outlined by principal designer Knight Engineers & Architects, the "Joliet Gateway Center" calls for new, separated, canopied platforms for the Heritage Corridor and Rock Island Metra lines, a new train station, a multistory parking deck across from the Joliet Slammers' Silver Cross Field and a renovated Union Station.
The $42 million project being funded almost entirely by state funding as well as money from the BNSF and Union Pacific railroads and the city.
It's far easier to see an artist's renderings of the 6-block transportation hub, which will put a new face on downtown Joliet south of Jefferson Street, that it is to describe it. Click here to go view presentation that outlines the project in great detail.